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Banning Syrian Refugees Won't Make America Safer, Only More Ashamed of Itself

If ISIS victims are banned from America, only ISIS will get in

When defending gun rights, conservatives point out that when guns are outlawed only outlaws have guns. The same logic applies to fleeing Syrian refugees: If ISIS victims are banned from America, only ISIS will enter.

But logic doesn’t seem to be driving the conservative response to the refugee crisis in the wake of the Paris attacks.Syrian Refugee WomenFoter Fear and naked politics is.

The Obama administration hasn’t exactly covered itself in glory since Syrian refugees started fleeing the bloodbath in their home country, as I wrote two months ago. Between 2013 and this March, it had admitted less than 500 Syrian refugees. (Since then, the pace has picked up somewhat after the dead body of a fleeing toddler lying facedown on a Turkish beach shocked the world.)

But the Republican response has gone from ridiculous to spiteful after reports surfaced that a fake Syrian passport was found near the body of a Paris attacker. But as the Niskanen Center’s David Bier has pointed out, it is far from clear that the passport actually belonged to the attacker. And if it did and it turns out he had exploited the flow of people into Europe, that does NOT him a refugee make. “He did not receive refugee designation from the United Nations or vetting from intelligence agencies,” notes Bier. “He was never approved for refugee status in any country.” Hence there is no reason for America to go all weak-kneed on refugees given that all its refugees are vetted prior to admission. “What happened in Paris is not applicable to the U.S. refugee process,” insists Bier.

That, however, hasn’t stopped 25 Republican governors — and one Democratic one — from drawing exactly the wrong lessons and issuing defiant statements warning the administration against settling any of the 10,000 Syrian refugees it had previously agreed to admit within their borders.

Ironically, among the governors joining this anti-refugee hysteria is Michigan’s Rick Snyder. He’s been practically begging the Obama administration for immigrants, including Syrian refugees, to revitalize his own security disaster zone called Detroit, long the murder capital of the country. Yet over the weekend he announced that he was going to suspend the refugee resettlement program — never mind that metro-Detroit’s Dearborn is home to the largest Arab population outside of Middle East whose residents, despite occasional scare mongering by official reports, have never committed  an act of terrorism.

But if Detroit’s Arabs are a non-threat, Syrian refugees are likely to be even more so. Indeed, ISIS would have to be even dumber than it is to try and sneak into the United States using refugees as a conduit. They are subjected to the most intensive vetting process compared to virtually any other immigrant group for two reasons:

One, they are refugees and hence looking for permanent residency which is an inherently a difficult and cumbersome process with intense background checks. (It would be far easier for ISIS to follow the example of 9/11 hijackers and try and obtain temporary student or business visas for their foot soldiers, although even that is not so easy to pull off either. Better yet it could avoid all scrutiny by paying human coyotes to smuggle them in.)

And two, they are Syrians.

Contrary to asylum seekers who show up at America’s doorstep like the Latin American minors fleeing violence, refugees need a referring agency — generally the UN High Commissioner for Refugees but sometimes the U.S. embassy or an NGO — to refer them to America. This agency has to perform its own screening before recommending someone. Just this stage takes four to 10 months and the UNHCR usually refers less than 1 percent of the applications it receives.

After that, even refugees from non-terrorist countries are lucky if they can get a clearance from American officials in a year.

But because Syrians are coming from ISIS land they are subjected to a special third-degree that can take another two to three years. As Vox’s Dara Lind points out, they have to prove a negative and show that they are not affiliated with any terrorist group. Until recently, if they had any contact whatsoever with a jihadi no matter how unknowing or innocuous — which is virtually unavoidable if your hometown has been overrun by terrorists — they were denied admissions. There have been cases when folks have been rejected because they might have served a jihadi who showed up at their sandwich shop.

Setting that aside, after a UN referral, a refugee still has a dozen or so other hurdles to cross. These include, as per USCIS website

  • A Security Clearance Process that involves the State Department running the names of all the refugees referred through a standard CLASS (Consular Lookout and Support System) name check. In addition, enhanced interagency security checks were phased in beginning in 2008 and applied to all refugee applicants by 2010.
  • Certain refugees undergo an additional security review called a Security Advisory Opinion (SAO). These cases require a positive SAO clearance from a number of U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies in order to continue the resettlement process.
  • Refugees who meet the minimum age requirement have their fingerprints and photograph taken by a trained U.S. government employee. The fingerprints are then checked against various U.S. government databases and information on any matches is reviewed by DHS.
  • All refugee applicants are interviewed by an officer from DHS’s U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) who may travel to the country of asylum to conduct a detailed, face-to- face interview with each refugee applicant. Based on the information in the refugee’s case file and on the interview, the DHS officer will determine if the individual qualifies as a refugee and is admissible under U.S. law.
  • If the USCIS officer finds that the individual qualifies as a refugee and meets other U.S. admission criteria, the officer will conditionally approve the refugee’s application for resettlement and submit it to the U.S. Department of State for final processing.
  • If approved, the refugee will be required to undergo medical screening conducted by the International Organization for Migration or a physician designated by the U.S. Embassy.
  • Prior to departure to the U.S., a second interagency check is conducted for most refugees to check for any new information.
  • Upon arrival at one of five U.S. airports designated as ports of entry for refugee admissions, a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer will review the refugee documentation and conduct additional security check.

As all of this shows, the process ain’t no stroll in the park and at the end of it lies rejection for the vast majority of applicants. To think that ISIS agents will subject themselves to it only to face either rejection or detection or both is patently absurd.

Simply shutting down the program won't stop jihadis from finding their way to the United States. It’s their innocent victims who'll suffer. This won’t make America, the land of the brave and free, any safer — just a whole lot more ashamed of itself when the fear abates and sanity returns.

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  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    But across the southern border. And they'll speak Spanish.

  • Microaggressor||

    Just what we need: another article on this important subject.

  • Drake||

    I knew this was coming.

  • ULOST||

    Hey Shikha,

    One small but significant mistake in headline.

    Should have read, Banning CHRISTIAN Syrian Refugees Won't Make America Safer, Only More Ashamed of Itself

    FTFY Your welcome. Now you can be right at least once. How does it feel?

  • Real American||

    Send them all to China. America doesn't need, nor want, a bunch of potential terrorists/welfare recipients/Democrats.

  • mashed potatoes||

    you know, I wouldn't think muslims would be natural democrats. republicans seem to be making a selffulfilling prophecy..

  • Buzz Kill||

    That's because you're apparently unaware of the fact that they're leaving their country looking for handouts.

    A blogger was recently in Hungary and took pictures: http://www.dangerandplay.com/2.....-shooting/

    These "refugees" are instructed to avoid Denmark because they'll be fingerprinted and registered and there welfare program isn't nearly as sweet as Germany (another flier instructs them on the country's with the best welfare programs).

    Democrats are only benevolent when it benefits them shipping in a ton of people that will become dependent on the government is music to a liberals ears. Even if there is a legitimate risk that terrorists will be imported in with the rest of the "refugees."

  • DesigNate||

    If those pictures aren't faked (the sign ones), Holy Shit.

  • sofubar||

  • pronomian||

    Very interesting that in most of those pictures all these old women and infants el presidente spoke of look just like healthy males between the ages of 16 and 30. Man, they sure have some ugly old women and infants.

  • Free Society||

    you know, I wouldn't think muslims would be natural democrats. republicans seem to be making a selffulfilling prophecy..

    They tend to be Democrats.

    http://www.centerforsecuritypo.....l-Data.pdf

    (bottom of page 8)

  • ||

    Although interestingly, prior to 2001 Muslims trended strongly Republican.

  • Hugo S. Cunningham||

    They liked social conservative politics, eg anti-abortion, anti-gay, anti teenage birth control, etc. I am not sure how much of a plus that is on a libertarian website.

    A handful of US social conservatives expressed sympathy for Islamist anti-liberalism after 9-11, but an overwhelmingly hostile response shut them up.

  • pronomian||

    And the countries around them don't want them either. Kinda telling isn't it.

  • lap83||

    How about this for vetting refugees...we only let you in if you pass the heartwarming photojournalism test. So if you're in the preferred demographic for the featured image in an article on refugees, you're in. Who can say no to adorable children and sad grandmothers?

  • Riven||

    Me.

    At least to these so-called adorable children. I'm not convinced such a thing can exist.

  • ||

    My child IS adorable. I caught him rubbing one out to your picture.

  • Riven||

    Ok, that's one potentially adorable child. Bonus points to him for having good taste.

  • Je suis Woodchipper||

    the acceptable demo is 18-25 and strict NO DUDES. Sugarfree settled this a thread or two ago.

  • dpbisme||

    How about not the single age military men who are have no families.... They should be set home to fight for their country... Married men with children are probably not a threat.

    NOTE:

    No country in the Middle East is excepting refugees,,, they are all coming to the West.

  • pronomian||

    Or let them in if they'll eat a ham sandwich.

  • R C Dean||

    A couple of questions, both of which assume that the vetting process actually works:

    (1) What public benefits will be made available to the refugees we admit?

    (2) Leaving aside the warm glow of having acted morally, how does having these refugees in the US, benefit the US?

  • Ron||

    another question is since when do we bring in refugees from countries that we are actually fighting in?
    Once WWII broke out I don't know if we took in German and Japanese refugees doe anyone here know?

  • ||

    We had a whole lot of japanese refugees during WWII. We kept them in camps.

    Just because they were from the US is of no consequence.

  • pronomian||

    Because the Japanese attacked US interests without notice, Radical Islam attacks without notice. See the similarity there? I'm not saying internment is the right thing to do but there are similarities when someone attacks us without notice. Plus I believe it had a lot to do with our backgrounds, we are, or were, mostly of western European descent, with the same type values. The others are just different than us and we don't like different.

  • DesigNate||

    We took German refugees if they were scientist. Might have taken others.

  • This Machine||

    I think these are good questions. It seems they will be eligible for a number of taxpayer-funded benefits. So depending on the numbers of immigrants accepted, the cost of admittance could be substantial. But I suppose if the care and feeding of those fleeing the Middle East is more important than the health of the American government's checkbook, then the both questions are irrelevant.

    Looking at all the arguments going on in the threads today, maybe that's what it boils down to. Is it worth spending public funds to support new immigrants to the United States, even if the costs are significantly higher, because that's just the right thing to do, welfare state or not? Or do we draw the line at public benefits and limit the financial damage to those already within our borders, even if that position doesn't represent the moral high ground?

  • rudehost||

    Taking money from someone who doesn't want to give it to you in order to pat yourself on the back for your own moral superiority is never the moral high ground.

    If you want to donate your own money to Syrian refugees be my guest.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    “He did not receive refugee designation from the United Nations or vetting from intelligence agencies,” notes Beir. “He was never approved for refugee status in any country.” "

    Look, I'm getting confused by arguments on both sides. If refugees are allowed, or are going to be allowed, what is this "vetting" process that the UN seems so confident is A1 squared away and bullet proof?

  • ||

    OT: I have heard a rumor that, following the loss of his wife, John will be "transitioning." His new name is slated to be Joanne.

    The hormone treatments have caused severe emotional swings, so I would ask the commenters to be understanding, supportive, and gentle.

  • sarcasmic||

    That explains a lot.

  • Certified Public Asshat||

    John loves fat women because he is one?

  • Riven||

    understanding, supportive, and gentle.
    So... everything you weren't last night?

  • ||

    That was the best 14 seconds of your life, admit it!

  • Riven||

    Like two ships passing in the night...quickly.

  • ||

    full speed ahead, captain!

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Is STEVE SMITH an iceberg in this analogy?

  • ||

    Somebodys hull is gonna get broke open.

  • Riven||

    Something something ramming speed...

  • Tak Kak||

    America doesn't feel shame!

  • DesigNate||

    No Shikah, the same logic does not apply.

    I'm ambivalent on the refugee thing, but Jesus Mary and Joseph on an animal cracker.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    "refugees need a referring agency —"

    Ok, now I'm pleading total ignorance here. Canada (to pick an example at random) claims it will admit 25,000 refugees into the country in six weeks. I'm a refugee who was bombed out of my home. I left with nothing but the clothes on my back. How do I and 25,000 of my best friends acquire this referral... within six weeks?

    There are very confusing moral imperatives at work here that seem... seem more complex than a Charlie Hebdo cartoon.

  • ||

    How do I and 25,000 of my best friends acquire this referral... within six weeks?

    You don't. Refugees spend months or years living in camps for a reason.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Exactly. So as I said in a thread a week ago, Canada is going to stuck them in an apartheid style camp on the docks for months or years?

  • ||

    That may well be. But there are also already plenty of camps set up elsewhere. Canada could be taking people who have been living that way for a while and resettling them more quickly.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    "Canada" has no fucking clue what it's going to do, because a vapid idiot made a promise that everyone understands is almost-impossible to fulfill, but he's doubling down on it.
    The latest is that, hey, we have all these army bases, let's just dump there then and sort them out later. Somehow.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    If your goal is morally utilitarian, then throwing people into tent cities on Canadian military bases is better than letting them get beheaded by marginalized peoples suffering from climate change.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    If that ends up happening, then it'll be hilarious. "We moved you from a tent camp in Turkey...to a tent camp in Manitoba. In the middle of winter. This here is snow, and you'll be seeing it for a while. Have fun!"

  • MetalBard||

    Sending the "refugees" to a camp?

    I could make an inappropriate joke here, but I'll refrain.

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    HOW MANY JEWS CAN FIT IN A VOLKSWAGON???

    There, I got you started - FINISH IT, YOU PANSY!

  • Tundra, well-chilled.||

    That depends. Are we talking about a Vanagon, Beetle, Passat, GTI, or what? "Cause if it's one of those EOS, I don't think you could fit more than 4, maybe 5.

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    TWO HUNDRED IN THE ASHTRAY!!!!

    NEXT JOKE IN POOR TASTE!

  • jamesrk||

    Why do German showerheads have 11 holes?

  • Gray Ghost||

    Weren't the Germans debating about settling some of their refugees in Buchenwald? Well, looks like they did house 21 of them, for a little while anyway.

    My favorite tongue-in-cheek take was from a poster who wrote something to the effect of:

    The Chinese have all of these 'ghost cities' needing people, the Russians are great at moving people vast distances on trains, and Germans have historically been great at getting people onto trains. Why can't all three flavors of Socialism work together like the three flavors of Neapolitan ice cream, to make this great social experiment happen?
  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    "When defending gun rights, conservatives point out that when guns are outlawed only outlaws have guns. The same logic applies to fleeing Syrian refugees: If ISIS victims are banned from America, only ISIS will enter."

    someone please to explain, no speak jibber jabber......or whatever it is.

  • Drake||

    The Government is going to buy us guns and refugees houses I think. If they get out of line, we have the guns.

  • ||

    If you won't let law-abiding people in, the only people who do get in will be terrorists.

  • MetalBard||

    Yes but will less terrorists come in? As usual Shikha makes a really retarded argument.

  • ||

    As I said below, what does that have to do with anything Dalmia wrote? Is it normally a corollary of the anti-gun-control position that allowing legal gun sales will prevent criminals from buying guns?

  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    So what she is saying is it's okay for criminals with legally purchased firearms to gun down legal refugees if they are from Syria........or something ?

  • MetalBard||

    You do realize that a gun is an inanimate object right? The comparison makes no sense here.

  • Restoras||

    The proper comparison is GUNZ R BAD! = SYRIAN/NORTH AFRICAN/ME refugeez good!

  • ||

    Nobody needs a Syrian that can carry more than seven rounds.

  • DesigNate||

    Wouldn't it be more accurate to say that only non-law-abiding people will get in?

    Of course, that doesn't necessarily mean they will be terrorists...

  • Not okay||

    Yeah that's retarded. I feel ashamed for her stupidity.

  • Dan Bongard||

    I assume she thought it was a witty turn of phrase. Best not to think about it too much.

  • Stone Cold Snark||

    It means you you have God given right a right to keep and bearhug a Syrian.

  • Ivan Pike||

    When defending gun rights, conservatives point out that when guns are outlawed only outlaws have guns. The same logic applies to fleeing Syrian refugees: If ISIS victims are banned from America, only ISIS will enter.

    What am I missing here; this doesn't seem to track.

  • sarcasmic||

    If you don't let the good guys cross the border legally, then the bad guys will cross it illegally. Or something.

  • MetalBard||

    So by her logic are all the illegals from Mexico bad guys?

  • sarcasmic||

    She's a Trump voter? Who knew?

  • R C Dean||

    The corollary, I suppose, is that if you let the good guys cross the border legally, the bad guys won't cross it illegally?

  • sarcasmic||

    That appears to be the implication.

  • ||

    Why? Is that part of the anti-gun-control position? That if you allow legal gun sales, no criminals will buy guns?

  • sarcasmic||

    Good point. Bad guys will get guns regardless, and bad guys will sneak over the border regardless.

    Of course bad guys have much easier access to guns when they can buy them legally. So wouldn't it follow that more bad guys will get into the country if refugees are let in?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Well, no, even with legal guns, there's a "vetting process". The UN says it's got a refugee vetting process.

  • ||

    So wouldn't it follow that more bad guys will get into the country if refugees are let in?

    It might. And maybe Dalmia is trying to get people to notice that that doesn't mean we should stop people who aren't bad guys.

  • Not okay||

    I don't think the analogy follows at all. If you ban guns only bad guys have guns.

    This works because bad guys with guns must be stopped by good guys with guns.

    If you ban Syrian refugees only terrorists may still get through but that number would be equal or less than freely letting them. But where it fails is that you don't need good Syrian refugees to stop bad Syrian refugees in the US.

    It's also stupid for many other reasons.

  • ||

    This works because bad guys with guns must be stopped by good guys with guns.

    Which is 100% irrelevant to whether you have a right to keep and bear arms.

  • Not okay||

    What is your point?

  • ||

    That nothing you said has any bearing on the aptness of Dalmia's analogy.

  • MetalBard||

    Damn why didn't I think of that one.

    The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. So using Dalmia logic The only thing that stops a boatload of bad Syrians is a boatload of good Syrians.

    Yeah her thinking still sounds retarded to me.

  • ||

    Yeah her thinking still sounds retarded to me.

    If by "her thinking" you mean "some shit you made up unrelated to anything Dalmia wrote," then yeah.

  • walker||

    That is actually correct, if you let un-vetted refugees from sryia in then bad guys wont have to enter illegally, they will come right in with legal status. ISIL has already stated it will do this and did in France. So, the author would rather we make it easier for terrorists to come in so we don't feel ashamed of being mean people?!

  • Drake||

    So this dumb article implies that these mean Governors are just preventing those wonderful immigrants from moving to their respective States.

    In reality, they are refusing to spend state tax revenue to feed, house, provide all kinds of services, and add them to their welfare rolls. But for some reason libertarians (and Dalmia) are mad at them.

  • ||

    In reality, they are talking a bunch of bullshit about stuff they have no control over. They are making public statements that they will "ban" refugees or "refuse" them access to their states.

  • Drake||

    Their state agencies do have control. Whether or not the Feds can arm-twist them into compliance will be interesting.

  • ||

    They don't have control over whether anyone lives in their state.

  • Drake||

    Exactly my point! They only control their dole - which is where these people land if accepted.

  • ||

    So then why aren't they just making statements about that, as opposed to statements about things they can't actually do?

  • Drake||

    Because those are boring details. Why doesn't Reason write it that way, instead of making it into an open borders cause? Doesn't fit their narrative.

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    In reality, they are refusing to spend state tax revenue to feed, house, provide all kinds of services, and add them to their welfare rolls.

    Weird that they gained this libertarian impulse over the weekend.

  • Riven||

    Everyone knows that when politicians are pressed, they go back to core principles, MJ.

  • Drake||

    Same with Reason writers.

  • Drake||

    Weird that all the Reason writers lost it at the same time.

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    The thrust of these articles is that the anti-refugee argument is wrongheaded. Are these governors also refusing to house any other refugees? Are they going to start kicking their current refugees off the dole? Will they go on record as opposing Christian refugees?

  • Drake||

    Sounds like they have some level of control over the volume of incoming refugees from other places and manage those according to their budget constraints.

  • DarrenM||

    How many 'refugees' is India taking?

  • SusanM||

    Read all this and more in Shikha's new book Displaced, Stateless Urchins: A Buyer's Guide

  • lap83||

    so she really is a libertarian after all...

  • SusanM||

    You ought to read the first chapter: Why urchins are better than waifs

  • lap83||

    My guess is they're more "entrepreneurial"

  • Tundra, well-chilled.||

    Who gives a shit? How much do they eat? The orphans are killing my food budget!

  • Restoras||

    Mine sustain themselves are their own tears of sorrow and woe. Try it sometime!

  • ||

    Two words: Soylent Green.

  • DarrenM||

    They taste better?

  • MiloMinderbinder||

    The process that Shikha describes sure sounds like it costs a lot of money.

    Who's paying for this?

    Yes, that was a rhetorical question.

  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    *starts to raise hand to answer......then realizes it's rhetorical and my answer was probably wrong, slowly lowers hand hoping no one saw*

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    Hitler?

  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    I knew it, I was right !!!!!!!

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    doh!

    *facepalm*

  • Gray Ghost||

    Pfft. Those taxes were spent anyway. What do you care what they're spent on, Milo?

  • Dan Bongard||

    A refugee is a person seeking safety.

    Feel free to explain why there is no safe location closer than 6000 miles to Syria.

  • SusanM||

    You're right, I mean France these days is very sa... oh.

  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    Well, you see what the islamites did in Paris recently ? Doesn't sound safe to me.

  • Dan Bongard||

    So that only leaves "the rest of France" and "the sixty or seventy nations that are closer to Syria than America is".

  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    Pretty much......

  • The Late P Brooks||

    How do I and 25,000 of my best friends acquire this referral... within six weeks?

    If your cash reserves survived, call the Clinton Foundation. I'm sure they can put you in touch with the right people.

  • Knutsack||

    "If ISIS victims are banned from America, only ISIS will enter."

    That would be a smaller pool of suspects, right?

  • lap83||

    Doesn't seem to be a great strategy for ISIS, if everyone knows they're the only ones entering

  • Suicidy||

    The premise of this article is progressive bullshit. Keep the fucking Syrians out.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    To think that ISIS agents will subject themselves to it is patently absurd.

    Everything aside, where does this certainty come from? I'm ambivalent about the whole refugee thing as of right now , but handwaving away possible problems because they are "too troublesome" is not a recipe for being taken seriously. It would not be as if ISIS invented the concept of a sleeper agent out of whole cloth if they do decide to make the effort.

  • Drake||

    You haven't seen the special passes ISIS Agents get that allows them to walk around airport security?

  • Suicidy||

    Well, maybe Archer and Lana Kane. But not Cyril.

  • Dan Bongard||

    Her claim is particularly dumb when you consider that most of the Al Qaeda agents involved in the 9/11 attacks went through US government screening procedures.

    So long as you're just a person with radical associations and no actual criminal record, all that happens when you get caught is expulsion from the country. There's essentially no risk, so why NOT try it? If you fail you can always sneak in later.

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    Why NOT try every other means before a cumbersome, lengthy process that requires you to hang out in a refugee camp for months?

  • John||

    Because they give you a flight there and admission. Do you really think it is easy to just walk up to an airport and fly into the US from Europe? You have to have a VISA or they never let you on the plane. It is pretty fucking cumbersome to get a VISA.

    Reason is wildly dishonest on this subject. They publish the worst sorts of half truths and lies about how immigration law works. Dalmia is the worst offender of a group of very bad offenders. Do yourself a favor, don't get your knowledge of immigration law from Reason.

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    Do you really think it is easy to just walk up to an airport and fly into the US from Europe? You have to have a VISA or they never let you on the plane. It is pretty fucking cumbersome to get a VISA.

    Classic John!

  • grrizzly||

    Yes, it is difficult to get a US visa if the citizens of your country are not allowed visa-free travel to the US.

  • ||

    "it is difficult to get a US visa if the citizens of your country are not allowed visa-free travel to the US."

    Hmmm.

    They may have to resort to dishonesty, then.

  • John||

    It is called the VISA waiver program and if you are not from one of those countries, and no country in the ME is, getting a VISA is not very easy.

    The open borders people on here seem to have no interest in knowing anything or understanding any facts that don't support their ideology. Whenever someone tries to explain a fact to you, you just respond with snark.

    And for the record it is classic John. It was me actually knowing something about a subject. Try it sometime.

  • Dan Bongard||

    Why NOT try every other means before a cumbersome, lengthy process that requires you to hang out in a refugee camp for months?

    Do feel free to describe these supposedly easier means. We'll wait.

  • ||

    "Do feel free to describe these supposedly easier means. We'll wait."

    Fly to Cuba, take a boat.

    Get into India, go from there to Canada or Australia and then to the US.

    Get some fake papers and pose as someone else entirely.

    I'm sure there are more, but I personally know people who have gotten here from Asia illegally exactly these ways.

  • Dan Bongard||

    Fly to Cuba, take a boat.

    Risks imprisonment by the Cubans or death on the crossing.

    Get into India, go from there to Canada or Australia and then to the US.

    Requires fooling three nations' governments instead of one.

    Get some fake papers and pose as someone else entirely.

    Yeah, it'll never occur to the government to check if your papers are real.

    I'm sure there are more, but I personally know people who have gotten here from Asia illegally exactly these ways.

    And?

  • ||

    Her claim is particularly dumb when you consider that most of the Al Qaeda agents involved in the 9/11 attacks went through completely different, much less rigorous US government screening procedures.

    FIFY

  • Marshal||

    How did you determine that process was "much less rigorous" than the supposed vetting we'll be doing?

  • Dan Bongard||

    Nikki used the highly reliable "say whatever's necessary to support her case" technique for determining that.

  • ||

    No, it's the "having a clue" method. Do you seriously think getting refugee status is as easy as getting a student visa?

  • Dan Bongard||

    I think getting a student visa is a long and involved process which you carry out in your country of origin. The open-borders crowd is proposing that we bring these people here first and then figure out if we should have afterwards, using a procedure that is still being defined.

    So yes, Nikki, if your goal is "get inside the United States", posing as a Syrian refugee is a hell of a lot easier than coming here on a student visa. Once you're in, the only trick is getting out of the refugee camp. That is not a hard trick, given that the people in the camp are presumed to be unarmed civilians and the folks guarding them aren't authorized to use lethal force to keep them in.

  • Marshal||

    At a minimum something that has an alternative accurately described as "less rigorous" would have to be "rigorous". The process as described includes interviewing the refugee and separately an undefined security check. Given the volume of refugees and the fact that their homeland is in a civil war it's clear no reliable detailed information is forthcoming from Syria [We might get names of suspects from before the war]. This means the "security check" will be limited to things like checking names against western nations' watch lists and facial recognition to known suspects.

    Does this sound "rigorous"?

  • Rhywun||

    You raise a good point. Terrorist after terrorist comes here on a "student" or "tourist" visa. Forget the refugee smokescreen... are we still handing out visas to ME "students" and "tourists" like candy? What kind of "vetting" are they getting?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Unfortunately, I'm having trouble seeing through all the snark. But this is actually a very good question. It's possible that if we discover the refugees are getting a more vigorous vetting process than the 9/11 hijackers did through work or student visas, then the answer will be to tighten all the immigration controls across the board.

  • Rhywun||

    Sorry for the snark but I suspect they is little to no vetting whatsoever. I would like to be proven wrong.

  • Rhywun||

    Also, FWIW, it took me all of a week to get a visa to visit China. I have no idea if any vetting was done, but it doesn't seem like you could accomplish much in a week. I would be surprised if the US was more paranoid that China when it comes to visas.

  • ||

    This works the other direction, too - if you can get *into* China from somewhere else, like Afghanistan, getting here illegally in a shipping container is not hard.

  • walker||

    The only vetting is a interview where the ask inane questions, its pretty easy to see Jihadi's doing that. Make em hug a Rabbi, that would be real vetting!

  • SugarFree||

    Load all the refugees into Tinder and Grindr. Let the wisdom of crowds decide.

  • DesigNate||

    So what you're saying is that we need an app for that?

    I'll set up a kickstarter.

  • SugarFree||

    Syrian Hot or Not, but something new, something fresh.

    Terrizr

  • lap83||

    Sunni or die?

  • SugarFree||

    Halal or Not?

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    Burqa or Pork Her™
    (non-Halal site)

  • Jordan||

    Has Reason been linked by Breitbart the past few days or something? The bigots and bloodthirsty neocons have really come out of the woodwork.

  • sarcasmic||

    They were always here. They're just stirred up right now.

  • Riven||

    Preach, Jordan.

    It's like someone sounded a full-throated call for yokels or something.

  • Citizen X||

    Jeez, what does that sound like?

    SUUUUUU-U-U-U-U-EYYYY

  • Riven||

    I have no idea. I think that's just as likely as anything else. I'd ask one of them, but I'm sure they'd just go into a rage, all elbows and knees and demanding cake.

  • Citizen X||

    WHY YU HATE OR FREEDUM

  • ||

    It sounds exactly like a dog whistle.

  • DesigNate||

    I don't think it's bigoted to point out the potential pitfalls of just mass accepting tens or hundreds of thousands of people from halfway around the world. Especially when you have terrorist groups on record as saying they plan on infiltrating said refugees.

  • MetalBard||

    Thats true, but it's easier to yell "Bigot!" and "Yokel!" then it is to make a compelling argument, especially for such a ridiculous position. I mean there is a reason virtually no one supports open borders outside of this website.

    Any other libertarian position you can find plenty of support, not necessarily a majority, but sizable minorities support ending the drug war, the 2nd amendment, free speech, limited government, capitalism, police reform, etc...

    But almost nobody supports open borders that should tell you something.

  • ||

    But almost nobody supports open borders that should tell you something.

    That most people suck?

    You know "almost nobody" supports the NAP, right? "Almost nobody" agrees that taxation is theft. What does any of that tell you?

  • Suicidy||

    Open borders only works when a lot of other things happen first. Until then, control the borders and be very selective about which foreigners get to come here.

  • Dan Bongard||

    I've found that quite a lot of people agree with the NAP and with the idea that taxation is theft. You just need to get out more.

    Open borders, on the other hand, only work in an alternate reality where people are angels and governments are minimalist.

  • Riven||

    But almost nobody supports open borders that should tell you something.


    Gosh, I guess if someone, somewhere doesn't agree with me... I better just rethink my opinion.

    From now on, I'm only holding majority opinions. Finally, I'll be with the "in" crowd.

  • MetalBard||

    Hey dumbass if you're with a large crowd of people and see a horse and point it out to everyone, and nobody else sees it, do you just assume that everyone else is crazy, or is it you?

  • Riven||

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say that situation is not really similar to the one we're discussing, but if you really want an answer...

  • Dan Bongard||

    Gosh, I guess if someone, somewhere doesn't agree with me... I better just rethink my opinion

    No, but if virtually everybody disagrees with you, you might want to offer a better argument for your position that "you're all RACISTS".

  • Riven||

    Thanks for contributing, Dan. Really.

  • Dan Bongard||

    So you don't actually have an argument for admitting the refugees, then?

    All we're getting from Reason is "people who oppose admitting the refugees should be ashamed of themselves". But the explanation for why we should feel shame for opposing a plan that brings us no benefit is mysteriously absent.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Cosmos have a religious devotion to open boarders. Except that they are also atheists and so cannot claim that they're following the will of sky daddy. Which leaves them with nothing more than sputter claims of racism to those with the temerity to point out the irrationality of their religious belief.

  • Citizen X||

    That nationalism is awfully seductive, for such a blatantly illogical fiction?

  • DesigNate||

    It strikes me as not very libertarian to support the fedgov using tax dollars to ship people over here, or anywhere really.

    Having said that, if someone (or organization) wants to sponsor refugees through private money, I can't really see a problem with that. And they're vetting process is probably going to be better than State's to boot.

  • Not okay||

    If you can make a compelling argument why paying to import refugees is libertarian, or part of the NAP you would be the first.

  • grrizzly||

    Says the guy who argued that the Russians should have surrendered to Hitler. I don't know whom to root for: neocons or peacenazis.

  • Marshal||

    all its refugees are vetted prior to admission.

    Did the feds build an exchange that includes checks to every conceivable database with live updating? Was it designed by government contractors who worked for years building a completely nonfunctional website which was largely replaced in a few months once competent outsiders were engaged?

    More seriously, who writes something like this without realizing they're engaging in propaganda? Regardless of whether this is a good idea or not what possible vetting process could work on a million people from a country engaged in a civil war?

  • SusanM||

    It's unlikely that any of these people have their form FYTY-39910-2.2 or their form WTF-42922.1 for the last 3 years (unless you have form LMFAO-391/310322-243.2.B indicating that you filled out form GTFO-32324.M after filing your IIRC-23920238/23/B/23993820033.2 for the last 5 years...).

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    Your ideas for naming forms intrigue me, and I would be interested in subscribing to any newsletters you may publish....

  • SusanM||

    I stopped publishing Video Games and Eldritch Horrors Beyond the Veil of Time and Space some tiem ago, sorry.

  • R C Dean||

    Perhaps another deal:

    For every Syrian refugee accepted by Saudi or one of the Gulf states, we will also take one.

    Seems fair to me.

  • Napoleon Bonaparte||

    A great new piece of Reason swag: for your next webathon, offer donors a Reason cookoo clock. Bonus points if it has Shikha and Gillespie pop out and announce the hour with cries of "Racists! Xenophobes! Nativists! Racists! Xenophobes! Nativists!"

  • MetalBard||

    Don't forget "Pants shitting" that seems to be of the more commonly used insults lately.

  • This Machine||

    Hey, don't forget the motion-activated talking yokel plush doll. Makes a great holiday gift for all your backwards ignorant hick relatives in flyover country, ha ha!

  • Not okay||

    If the US felt a compelling moral interest to protect Syrian refugees they could establish control over an area in Syria, nothing requires shipping immigrants in.

  • The Grinch||

    It seems Reason has picked their hill to die on. Letting Syrian refugees into the US and Europe after a terrorist attack in a western capital where at least one terrorist was posing as a refugee.

    They've lost their damn minds and will run Libertarianism, already a tattered brand, into the side of a mountain. Way to go guys and gals.

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    Yep, THIS is what will do it. And we were so close to convincing the Weekly Standard crowd to come to our side!

  • ||

    where at least one terrorist was posing as a refugee.

    Yes, he was posing as a refugee, and was apparently not admitted as a refugee. What was your point again?

  • The Grinch||

    The point is he infiltrated using refugees as cover. How does him not being a refugee change the situation in any meaningful way?

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    Because the people who ARE admitted as refugees won't... be... him?

  • Riven||

    Get out of here with your logic and (apparently) above average reasoning skills.

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    "Some call me....Tim...."

  • The Grinch||

    But some of those admitted with very well may be. ISIS has bragged about doing just this and have made good on that boast.

  • ||

    I didn't say he wasn't a refugee. I said there is no evidence he was admitted as a refugee. I.e., he did not infiltrate using refugees as cover.

  • Dan Bongard||

    He came along with hundreds of thousands of other "refugees", most of whom also do not have official refugee status yet either, but who were admitted because the People Who Know Best insisted it was a matter of utmost moral urgency to let them in.

    So yes, he infiltrated using the refugees as cover.

  • Dan Bongard||

    apparently not admitted as a refugee

    The vast majority of Syrian "refugees" were not admitted as refugees. Getting refugee status takes a long time, even in Europe.

  • ||

    "Yes, he was posing as a refugee, and was apparently not admitted as a refugee."

    Define "admitted as a refugee". They sure didn't stop him from travelling through numerous countries, obviously without any kind of regular permission. Him (superficially) appearing as a refugee is what allowed him to pass.

  • Riven||

    Why don't you go back to your fudge?

  • Drake||

    Letting Paying vast sums of money to import Syrian refugees into the US and Europe ...

    Fixed it for you.

  • Jerryskids||

    Letting Syrian refugees into the US and Europe after a terrorist attack in a western capital where at least one terrorist was posing as a refugee.

    So you're saying all it takes is one terrorist - one dead fucking terrorist in France, no less - to get you to abandon your principles? There were like 8 fucking scumbags that killed 129 or so unarmed sheep and you're acting like it's the fucking Wehrmacht coming down the street. You know once upon a time we stood up to and defeated the fucking Wehrmacht, right?

  • John||

    No. I am saying I don't owe people in Syria shit. And I certainly don't owe you and your principles any moore. Fuck you.and the people in Syria. If you want to risk your life for your principles, go for it. But you have no right to expect me to do the same. I don't care if it is a one in a million chance, you have no right to force me to take that chance much less steal my money to pay for it.

  • Riven||

    God damn. Take a midol or something.

  • Artimus||

    Except that he's right and you're pretty much a mush-brain who wants the rest of us to act on Teh Feeeelzz.

  • MetalBard||

    So If one the refugees commits a terrorist attack after we let them can all the writers on Reason the advocated for this issue a public apology? Nothing big just write an article titled "We were wrong."

    More importantly, if that happens, could you guys at least try to learn from this mistake, and maybe rethink your position.

    I mean when I have a plan, and it ends horribly, I assume I had a bad plan, and come up with a new one, I don't double down on stupid.

  • sarcasmic||

    I mean when I have a plan, and it ends horribly, I assume I had a bad plan, and come up with a new one, I don't double down on stupid.

    You'll never make it as a politician.

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    Has anyone said, "Nothing will happen. There is zero risk"?

  • Suicidy||

    Obama.

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    When did he start writing for Reason?

  • Riven||

    Yeah, Reason. Why don't you rethink your position? Instead of starting with a solid, rational basis, why not try forming an emotional opinion first, and then working backwards to your "principles"?

  • John||

    Yeah, nothing says solid reasoning like never adjusting your position in response to events. You jsut reason the right position and God damn it is the world's duty to follow it.

    And once again we get brave Libertarians telling other people they must die for Libertarian principles. Fuck you and your principles. You want to risk your life for them, have fun. But how fucking dare you tell the rest of the world they must do so.

  • Riven||

    Oh, Joanne... Are you having a heavy flow today?

  • MetalBard||

    Come on Riven you want the refugees so bad? Let one of them move in with you. Stand up for your principles. Don't sit here and demand that the government spend money housing and feeding these people, that doesn't seem very Libertarian to me.

  • Riven||

    Did I say I wanted them?

    Mostly I'm just enjoying the pantswetting about the possibility of letting them in. "But if we let them in, ONE OF THEM might DO SOMETHING BAD!!1!@!@!!2"

    The world is a dangerous place, full of plenty of folks ranging from very bad to very good. I just think it's ridiculous to write off a whole group of people based on something that one of them might do. Sounds like the kind of argument a gun grabber might make.

  • Dan Bongard||

    A person who says "let's take guns away from Americans" is a gun-grabber.

    A person who says "let's not hand out guns to a random assortment of people from the terrorist capital of Earth" is not a gun-grabber. He's a person with common sense.

    We're not talking about denying these people anything they have a right to. We're discussing whether we should give them special benefits NOT enjoyed by the other 6.7 billion non-Americans on Earth. We don't need a reason not to give them benefits -- we need a reason TO give them benefits.

    What reason is that, exactly?

  • John||

    Thanks for admitting you have nothing to say in response and have lost the argument. It is always nice when people do that.

  • Riven||

    Mostly I just don't think it's worthwhile to argue with you since your return after the homocaust. I was glad you were gone and I wish you'd go again.

  • John||

    Tough shit. I am here and if that makes your being stupid harder, well you can thank me later.

  • This Machine||

    But damn it, John, we have champagne! Champagne!

    Okay, maybe not champagne. Gonna have to settle for the Champagne of Beers(tm).

  • Acosmist||

    Projection is fun.

  • Jordan||

    Should the Reason writers apologize when someone commits a mass shooting as well, since they don't support gun bans?

  • Riven||

    New and Improved Reason! All Apologies--All the Time!

  • John||

    No because gun bans wouldn't have prevented those. But if one of these refugees does something, then your God damned right they owe an apology. Whatever harm is done only happens because we let them in.

  • MetalBard||

    Not to mention there was a reason earlier claiming falsely that no refugee has ever committed a terrorist attack against the U.S.

    Another claiming that our concerns are overblown.

    I've never seen a 2nd amendment support suggest that shootings won't happen, or claim that people's concerns about getting shot are overblown.

  • John||

    That too. Anyone who is honest in their support of gun rights will tell you the occasional nut shooting some place up is a price that goes with having gun ownership.

  • ||

    I've never seen a 2nd amendment support suggest that shootings won't happen, or claim that people's concerns about getting shot are overblown.

    Really? You've never seen any of the many H&R posts about how violent crime is not the worst it's ever been and there's no evidence mass shootings are increasing in frequency?

  • mfckr||

    I'm waiting for someone to explain how the state-facilitated importation of refugees is somehow a coherent Libertarian policy.

  • MetalBard||

    Because open border Uber Alles!!!

    It's an article of faith among people here, and it trumps all else. Government housing, government healthcare, welfare, etc are all bad, unless they go to refugees.

  • Drake||

    Me too. They sure seem eager to spend my money on something I don't want.

  • ||

    I say make every refugee eat 1/2 pound of bacon before they leave for the US.

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    LESS BACON FOR ME??!!! FUCK YOU!

  • ||

    MMMM....Bacon!!!!!

  • Tundra, well-chilled.||

    He meant back-bacon, that we normally ship to the filthy Canucks.

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    Oh, well - yeah - NOT bacon they can have as much as they want

  • Suicidy||

    And have any hot young women turned over to me for some premarital sex.

  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    Have you seen the actual refugee photos ?

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    If ISIS victims are banned from America, only ISIS will get in

    Regardless of where you come down on this (and I, personally, could not care less if we get a bunch of Syrian immigrants in the US or not - including my own back yard - srsly).....that is one fucking stupid statement.

    Jesus, Shikha - please stop giving people the loaded gun, AND pointing it at your skull, AND showing them how to operate the weapon.

    Please. For your own good. PLEASE.

  • Private Chipperbot||

    No shit. Half will end up in Michigan anyway, and I could give a shit. It'll be great for the city as all of the prior generation middle eastern merchants are packing up and getting the hell out because of the conditions.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    More like immi-ingrate-tion, amirite?

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    *forges Crusty's signature on "Almanian for President - 2016" petition*

  • Private Chipperbot||

    I find the Hit n Run 'Pictures of Refugees' the most hilarious thing about this entire brouhaha. Wherever you may stand on the issue, they could at least paint a more Reasonable picture of who is claiming status. Every photo on the blog is of grandma, mama, and a couple of doe eyed children.

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    I'm gonna call "DRINK!" on this one....

  • SugarFree||

    He just wants to see more pictures of dudes. There's nothing wrong with how he feels.

  • Private Chipperbot||

    Hey, it's almost lumberjack clothing season in the mitten...

  • lap83||

    Which is why I mentioned above that I think they should be the only refugees allowed in. Journalists apparently believe all of them will be like that and the skeptics would be more inclined if they were. Win-win

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    heh

  • ||

    It is called 'appeal to emotion'. As soon as you detect it note that they are trying to shore up a weak argument with feelings.

  • Private Chipperbot||

    Checks website name. Huh. Checks pants. Not shitting. What. The. Hell...

  • The Grinch||

    Let them in for the children. You don't want to let them in? Why do you hate kids?

  • MetalBard||

    It almost seems a tad dishonest when you think about it, but would they have to resort to that when they have the correct position on this?

  • Private Chipperbot||

    Always remember. That kid that drown is your fault.

  • The Grinch||

    I'd think advocates of a policy that encourages people to get on leaky rustbuckets deserve some of the blame.

  • ||

    "Banning Syrian Refugees Won't Make America Safer Only More Ashamed of Itself"

    Ashamed of itself? Fuck you.

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    I mean, how COULD America™ be more ashamed of itself after Mizzou and Yale, amirite?

  • ||

    We have our fair share of fuckwits, that is certain, but this country has done more to improve the world than the entire rest of the world combined for over a hundred years. We have made more social progress, created more wealth, improved more lives and defeated more evil than anyone else. We have rule of law more so than anyone else and more freedom than anyone else. We have more social and economic mobility than anyone else. To say that we are or should be ashamed of ourselves is moronic and insulting.

    Think about the logic behind that statement: We are a wonderful place that offers a good life so we are ashamed of ourselves. If we don't offer that wonderful life to a bunch of people who had nothing to do with creating it then we should be more ashamed.

    My days of giving Shikha the benefit of doubt are over. She should pick up a sign and head on over to Mizzou.

  • MetalBard||

    This is going to sound a little paranoid but does anyone else ever wonder if a bunch of leftists infiltrated Reason in order to steal the Libertarian brand just like that did with the word "Liberal" decades ago?

    A liberal used to mean a libertarian, but over time the movement became filled with leftists and the meaning changed, I wonder if the same thing is happening again.

  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    Now I trust no one......*looks around furtively*

  • VG Zaytsev||

    The Editor in Chief here was a student in Czechoslovakia when the commies were running the joint.

  • Riven||

    My days of giving Shikha the benefit of doubt are over.


    I'm sure she'll be weeping into her pillow this very night over losing your support.

  • Gray Ghost||

    +1 Marshall Plan, Suthen.

  • ||

    Not really. I don't think we can sink much lower. Exhibit A: American Idol. Exhibit B: Dancing With the Stars, Exhibit C: Nancy Grace.

  • Restoras||

    Exhibit D: Cleveland Browns

  • Tundra, well-chilled.||

    All true. The good news, though? We have no responsibility for Justin Beiber. With one small spurt, Canada absolves us of all our sins.

  • Gray Ghost||

    Exhibit K: All things Kardashia.

  • John||

    Double fuck her. How many refugees is India taking? is Dalmia ashamed?

  • Private Chipperbot||

    C'mon. Where would they fit in the caste system?

  • Restoras||

    They would create a new caste below the Undesirables, the Really Undesirables!

  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    Thought Muslims already occupied that rung on the ladder ?

  • MetalBard||

    Plus on all the issues people like Dalmia claim to believe in the United States is best on. So she can take her shame and fuck herself with it.

  • ||

    Dalmia regularly writes columns about being ashamed of India.

  • John||

    But never as ashamed as she is of the US. Yet somehow she stays. I guess she just cares that much.

  • Tundra, well-chilled.||

    So much shame.

    Wait a minute - is Dalmia Italian-Catholic?

  • JeremyR||

    Does she? Usually I remember the ones saying how much better India is than the US

  • MetalBard||

    If Dalmia doesn't let me in her house she won't make herself safer, only more ashamed of herself.

  • Suicidy||

    I'm very PROUD to block the, from coming here.

  • Rhywun||

    The more I read about this process, the more expensive it sounds. What exactly are we getting out of it?

  • grrizzly||

    Moral preening.

  • Ivan Pike||

    What exactly are we getting out of it?

    10,000 Syrian refugees.

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    I would like to see some numbers, and where the money comes from.

  • Rhywun||

    Me too. I am still on the fence with this issue, but if we're not getting anything positive out of other than international feelz, why the hell are we doing it.

  • AlmightyJB||

    For every 10000 illiterate, destitute people you bring here, GDP goes up by a point

  • Microaggressor||

    1000 cocktail parties

  • ||

    How about, for starters, childless females aged 18-20? I'll take 10,000 of them in my backyard.

  • DesigNate||

    I was going to make a joke about only getting 72 but thought that might be too crass, even for a place that allows Sugarfree to post his vile (and humorously erotic) "novels".

  • ||

    You think you can be too crass here? I see that as an insult to the commentariat.

  • MaceTech||

    This is one time I can't agree with Reason... First, we're supposed to bend over and take it while our money is stolen from us to bomb people in other countries until they hate us as mortal enemies, and then we're supposed to bend over and take it while our money is stolen from us to move those same people that hate us next door as our neighbors, where they can fundamentally undermine our values, culture and beliefs. You've gotta be fucking kidding me.

  • The Grinch||

    Careful, they'll call you mean names. They're almost as creative with them as the good folks at Huffpo.

  • lap83||

    I agree, I don't know how you can reconcile the views of "It's not our responsibility to fight for people who hate us on the other side of the world" with "It's our responsibility to pay for the same people to come and live here".

  • Social Justice is neither||

    It's not our responsibility to fight people that hate us on the other side of the world and that's exactly why we have to pay for them to live next door. So we can get the cops to shoot them here.

  • The artist known Dunphy||

    Hey!!!

    This is a bargaining issue

    You want us to shoot, we want more perks

    Free coffee and Monster energy drinks in the report writing room, as well
    As chair massages during roll call!

  • Artimus||

    You forgot to mention steroids.

  • MetalBard||

    I think all you wonderful principled libertarians who want to help these refugees should open your doors for them. Let them stay in your house, let them live with you. After all it doesn't seem very libertarian to sit there demanding that my tax dollars go to feed and house a bunch of refugees that I don't even want over here.

    You guys like them, then stick to your principles and take them in yourselves.

  • Riven||

    MetalBard was so proud of his own comment, he's posted it twice in this one thread. Good for you, MetalBard. I'm so pleased you're slowly rebuilding your confidence after our last round of vigorous pegging.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    So how many are going to bunk at your house, Riven?

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    Damn straight!

  • JPyrate||

    "The sinicization of Tibet is a term used by some critics of Chinese rule in Tibet to refer to the cultural assimilation that have occurred in Tibetan areas of China (including Tibet Autonomous Region and surrounding Tibetan-designated autonomous areas) which have made these areas more closely resemble mainstream Chinese society. They say that these changes have been most evident since the incorporation of Tibet into the People's Republic of China in 1950/51 and have been facilitated by a broad range of active economic, social, cultural and political reforms introduced to Tibetan areas by the Chinese Government over the last six decades. Critics also point to the government-sponsored migration of large numbers of Han Chinese into the Tibet Autonomous Region as a major component of sinicization."

    TIBETEN'S SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF THEMSELVES !!!!!!!

  • MetalBard||

    I pointed out once that Soviet Russia did the same thing by moving ethnic Russians into the Ukrainian Crimea, and was called a lunatic for suggesting it by the usual commentators here.

  • The Grinch||

    The Baltic states too. The Soviets used that strategy as a matter pf policy and it was effective.

  • JPyrate||

    It's crazy. It's like some people do not understand the difference between government forced immigration, and voluntary immigration.

  • JPyrate||

    I'm an "Open Borders" type of guy, and even I think the idea of forced immigration, economic ghetto's, and this author's appeals to emotion are insane.

  • MetalBard||

    You can have fairly open borders, be extremely generous with work visas, make citizenship easy to get, but this idea that a nation has no right to control immigration no matter what is fucking insane.

  • bassjoe||

    I'm pretty sure Reason is trolling its commentariat. It's funny seeing the supposedly libertarian people make the same jingoistic comments time after time on the basis of their own fears and prejudices. The Reason editors must be getting a kick out of it.

  • ||

    I have been embroiled in this fight all day and yesterday. I have nothing else to do so y'all are stuck with me unless the power goes out. I can't do a thing because a front is coming through. Raining like hell and 40+ mph winds.

    What I find amusing about this crowd is that we are fighting like hell over this, but tomorrow when a different issue fires people up the two sides will contain a completely different mix of names and argue just as passionately. Then a third issue and we can all pile on some other entity. I see this as evidence of intellectual honesty. There are some here who are dead wrong but I don't doubt for a moment that they believe what they are saying. They are just wrong, thats all. Honest but wrong.

    I have seen plenty of sites where the commenters are like lemmings, following the party line no matter where it leads. Very little to no dissent. Packs of shreeks. They turn my fuckin' stomach. I will be a lone dissenter here all day long before spending five minutes at Salon or ThinkProgress.

  • The Grinch||

    In a way it's laudable but it also serves as evidence to visitors that Libertarians shouldn't be in charge of so much as a taco stand.

  • kbolino||

    If yours is the standard that should be applied to determine who runs things, then I humbly suggest that no one is fit to run anything.

  • Illocust||

    It is something I appreciate about this site. You can see general trends of people that get along on some issues, but it's not every issues and its not always for the same reasons. It's the sign of a healthy intellectual environment.

  • JPyrate||

    ^^ Agreed, and Agreed with Suthen.

  • The artist known Dunphy||

    The intellectual honesty is good - it's the methodology that mirrors other ideologues

    Attacking motives, character etc

    Opponents of accepting refugees are PANTS SHITTERS iow cowards, or Xenophobic (high falutin equivalent of 'racist' the go to leftist insult)

    THAt IMO is how allegedly 'reasonable' mirror left and right wing ideologues, ad homs, character attacks, etc instead of discussing IDEAS

    that is itself a character flaw ironically - inability to accept that an opposing viewpoint can be sincerely held, well informed , and not held because of alternative motives, prejudice, character flaws, etc

  • PetraRawls||

    Im making over $9k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do,

    ---------- http://www.onlinejobs100.com

  • AlmightyJB||

    I gave up on shame years ago. Counterproductive.

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    That's just your latest mistake, Shikha. Guilt about everything under the sun is the universal currency of the first world. Some of us though have decided to stop feeling guilty and start trying to live as we think best. The more henpecked people are, the sooner they join the backlash.

  • gphx||

    I differ with many libertarians on the issue of immigration. If a country cannot control their borders they are not a country. Whether or not the US should be letting anyone in or not is a debatable question. What isn't debatable is the fact any author who presumes to tell readers what they will or will not be ashamed of is a presumptuous prig.

  • The artist known Dunphy||

    And of course anybody who opposes is a 'pants shitter', the libertarian equivalent of the left and 'racist'

    Don't debate ideas - attack motive, character etc

    Yet another way alleged libertarians mirror ideologues of every stripe

  • Artimus||

    Don't you have any citizens who need shooting, Dunphy?

  • XM||

    The question isn't whether he was a genuine refugee. As Allaphundit from Hotair argues, what matters is whether he entered Europe along with the waves of other refugees or carried the passport to leave an impression that there are ISIS members among their rank. Those are the only two reasons why he would carry a passport that supposedly matched the identity of a person detected as a refugee.

    The vetting process on our side is pointless if records and database on the other side is sketchy. Criminals in this country rely on straw purchases to get guns, meaning they essentially passed background checks to get guns. It's no secret that economic migrants have purchased fake IDs of real or dead individuals and blended among refugees.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new.....ugees.html

    American citizens have a constitutional right to own guns. A foreign national does not have a right to come here. You cannot unilaterally oppose some sort of action against the very people killing these refugees but claim absolute moral mandate on accepting the few who were able to pay off smugglers. If we accepted an unlimited amount of refugees without restrictions, it WILL lead to certain consequences.

    You cannot think and operate within a vacuum when discussing this kind of policies. LET other nations who want to take them handle them, and see how it goes.

  • Careless||

    How was it so easy to guess who wrote this moronic piece? Oh yeah, that's all she does, embarrass herself on the subject of immigration

  • ||

    Dalmia: "When defending gun rights, conservatives point out that when guns are outlawed only outlaws have guns. The same logic applies to fleeing Syrian refugees: If ISIS victims are banned from America, only ISIS will enter.

    But logic doesn’t seem to be driving the conservative response (...)."

    Well, that's hilarious. Outlawing guns means only outlaws have guns. That creates a power imbalance detrimental to the law-abiding. "Banning" ISIS victims does not create such a power imbalance. You don't shoot ISIS victims at ISIS. Hence there's no analogy. (And the accusation of flawed logic becomes ironic.) If anything, it (completely banning) will reduce the risk of members of ISIS entering. That's because resources that would otherwise have been used in the fallible immigration screening process are freed to strengthen other security measures. There's a potential counter argument, which lies in greater animosity towards an isolationist compared to a helping/humanitarian US. By banning victims, the US may "create" more terrorists (who will then try to enter). I guess the blackmail touch may render this inopportune to mention.

  • The artist known Dunphy||

    well put

    I'm agnostic on admitting refugees thus far, but j know bogus analogies benefit no one, and that was an absurd analogy. Heck, it would make an anti-cop bigorati blush and they do some awesome bogus analogies

    I may decide to support refugees being admitted but it will be despite u persuasive silly screeds like above, not due to them

    I really hate the idea of political litmus tests, but after what has happened in Europe, is it really good policy to admit people IF they tend to oppose nearly every freedom we hold dear and they tend to have far more children than average,,- a force multiplier

    Look at the pew polls - in terms of %age support and opposition to various ideas

    Maybe the refugees would be far more likely to oppose honor killings, hate speech laws, etc but I'd want to know

  • buybuydandavis||

    Shikha wants open borders.

    Surprise, surprise, surprise.

    No thanks. And I don't really feel guilty either.

    I wonder if Shikha will feel guilty as the US citizens descend into greater and greater government control as all these wonderful immigrants tilt the political balance toward the global norm of less freedom than the US.

    Nah. I doubt it. She'll just self righteously complain about the increasing lack of freedom she helped bring about.

  • HenryC||

    It would not make me safer, but I would not be ashamed either.

  • Undercover Libertarian||

    Between 1937 and 1940 many countries refused to take in Jews (Including members of my family) under the claim that they were afraid that Germany would infiltrate agents pretending to be Jews (which they did get about a dozen agents in England that way before the Brits cut off Jewish Refugees). This is too similar, and we can't let fear get in the way of real human lives.

    Yes I am afraid of ISIS but something needs to be done, especially for the Christians, Yazidis and other minority groups, but even for regular Syrians fleeing. What we need is a temporary transit place to take in thousands of refugees where they can be processed and vetted (given help and aid) before being let in to the US, even if it's only under a temporary refugee status until another suitable country can be found where they will be more receptive to them, or until Syria stabilizes and then and only then return them home. But we need to do something now. These are people and it's partially our fault in the first place. So find a temporary transit camp to vet and process them and then give them refugee status, or at least keep them in a safe transit camp until better accommodations can be made

  • XM||

    But the Jews at that time were facing certain extinctions, and most of them probably did not support the rise of the likes of Hitler.

    Most of these refugees are economic migrants from regions not besieged by war and conflict. If we could filter them out and accept only those from Syria, most of us would be OK with that. But there's no way to do this.

  • Undercover Libertarian||

    Fine, but what about the Christians, Yazidis, and other non Sunni minority groups targeted by ISIS and are being either killed or sold as slaves with their women raped? At least for those people we should let them in

  • TimothyLane||

    Are you trying to claim that ISIS won't infiltrate any of its operatives into the "refugees", as they definitely have done in Europe? If we admit no one from the Levant, then we won't get any ISIS agents. And that means fewer terrorists -- and a lot fewer rapists. (Scandinavia is seeing its rape rates explode in areas of heavy Muslim immigration.)

  • lawnerd||

    Allowing the free influx of refugees invites radical extremists to entire the country. Once here they can more easily carry out their terrorist plans. TRUMP 2016!

  • lawnerd||

    Allowing the free influx of refugees invites radical extremists to entire the country. Once here they can more easily carry out their terrorist plans. TRUMP 2016!

  • DListon1||

    Ashamed of itself? Nonsense. A country can't feel shame. You sound like a chuckle-headed Leftist. Emotional appeals are a logical fallacy. These people are from a very different culture, backwards, a radically different and backwards religion and no nothing of our culture and dont speak English. How will they be housed? How will they work or what do they do for food or jobs? Taxpayer handouts. Federal government. Doesn't sound Libertarian to me. We are not obligated to take them. Explain why they are not going to neighboring Islamic countries where they share the same culture. Turkey, Iran, gulf states. Why not Russian or Asia. I have yet to hear why they have to come here. They are NOT refugees. Refugees are temporarily displaced persons seeking temporary refuge. If your house burns down you get put up in temp housing. You dont get to demand to be flown to 5 star hotel in St Thomas.

  • SmokinDave||

    They're all about "shame" when it suits their purposes. Where was all this outrage when Christians were being massacred, raped, and beheaded for months previous? Why, it just wasn't there. But now, suddenly we're all supposed to bend over backward to accommodate Muslim refugees? I am not anti-Muslim, nor do I suffer from any Islamphobia. I do however, like to think I have a bit of common sense. There is only one group responsible for this time and again, and the responsible thing to do is to err on the side of caution. If it inconveniences some Muslims, I apologize. But the responsibility of my government-like any responsible government-is to its own citizens first.

  • buybuydandavis||

    "Where was all this outrage when Christians were being massacred, raped, and beheaded for months previous?"

    When Muslims massacre, rape, and behead Christians, they're "punching up" so it's ok.

  • SmokinDave||

    I beg to disagree. As I'm sure many French would as well. We feel for the Syrians, but it's really quite simple. Over 140 people were massacred in Paris. That's 140 innocents whose lives were traded, and for what? Is it not the first responsibility of ANY government to protect their own citizens first? If there is any reasonable chance that the refugees include ISIS recruits-and those odds are, by recent events, more than reasonable, then it behooves any responsible government to do it due diligence to protect its own citizens. Oddly enough, it is possible to provide aid without allowing refugees free access to any place they want to go. Furthermore, it would benefit those very refugees to provide aid and assistance to actually stabilize their own homeland, rather than encourage them to flee and surrender it to bullies. It is not our-nor anyone else's-responsibility to do anything. We have watched thousands-mostly Christian-be massacred in the region, and the world has done....nothing. Now suddenly we have a "responsibility" to take in every one of them? No, we do not.

  • buybuydandavis||

    " Is it not the first responsibility of ANY government to protect their own citizens first?"

    Since the Reason writers tend to be anarchists, they're simply against nation states, and particularly the borders of them.

    For them, the first responsibility of ANY government is to cease to exist.

  • MSimon||

    Honduras arrests 5 Syrians with stolen Greek passports headed to the US.

    Tegucigalpa (AFP) - Honduran authorities have arrested five Syrians intending to make it to the United States with stolen Greek passports, triggering alarm Wednesday in the wake of the Paris attacks launched by Syria-linked jihadists.

    The Syrians were arrested on Tuesday as they flew into Toncontin airport serving the Honduran capital and failed to make it past airport security checks, a police spokesman, Anibal Baca, told reporters.

  • Win Bear||

    Could "we" please observe the first rule of libertarianism and stop collectivizing? "America" is an abstraction, not an entity that can feel "ashamed of itself". So, for that matter, are "Syrian refugees", which run the gamut from cantankerous old men to young women, from Islamic radicals itching to kill someone to Gandhi like pacifists.

    From a libertarian point of view, decisions about whether to admit refugees should be made voluntarily by individuals and groups, and the cost and risks for taking on those refugees should also be born voluntarily by individuals and groups.

    For Obama to get up on a podium and announce that "we" will take on X number of refugees, or for the DHS to do this quietly, is not a voluntary act on my part or on the part of anybody else in the US. It doesn't reflect on my or anybody else's morality or values, it is simply something that is imposed on me. I don't feel good about having them done in my name since I have no choice in the matter, and I don't feel ashamed that I oppose them out of principle either.

  • dpbisme||

    When pushing banning firearm ownership , Liberals say that if banning guns saves one life it is worth the cost.. The same logic applies to fleeing Syrian refugees: If even on Syrian refuge is a member of ISIS and kills an American it is to many.

    I say let the families in biut not the Military Age Single Men who seem to make up 75% of the so called refuges. nYou are just asking for trouble.

  • Mark P||

    I am not ashamed of my desire for security. It is impossible to live well without security, so it should be a high priority for everyone. The fear for our security is not irrational--as the author suggests--it is real. In fact, it is a given that ISIS will have a successful terrorist attack in America--the only question is when, and how many will be killed. So it is perfectly legitimate to take measures to increase security and minimize the upcoming destruction. In regard to the Syrian refugees, three points, One, there is no need for them to come--Assad has already offered these refugees safe haven in a sanctuary city in Syria, with good accommodations, hospitals, and UN inspection; two, only the Christians are suffering religious persecution and beheading (not by Assad, but by Isis); however, Sunnis are being favored over the Christians for visas (not only in Syria, but throughout the Middle East); three, high ranking officials in the FBI, the state department and homeland security have stated that it is likely that Isis will be able to infiltrate the refugee population in Syria; four, Isis operatives--whether or not they are already in the US or the ones trying to sneak in with the refugees--will be planning terrorist attacks in the US. I find it morally offensive that this author considers those concerned about US security to be the problem, and not the actual perpetrators of evil.

  • Long Woodchippers||

    How many of the Michigan Arabs are Christians? I'm not worried about Arabs, I'm worried about Muslims from Syria.

  • Long Woodchippers||

    I looked it up myself. Despite the Arab population of the US increasing by 60% in the last 25 years, and with a higher percentage of those being Muslim, according to Arab America still only 24% of Arab-Americans are Muslim. A majority of Arab-Americans are Lebanese or Chaldean. I went to school with a dozen or so, who's families were from Lebanon and Syria, and none were Muslim. We have an Antiochan Orthodox church down the street.

    So please, Ms. Dalmia, when you make a statement like "never mind that metro-Detroit’s Dearborn is home to the largest Arab population outside of Middle East whose residents, despite occasional scare mongering by official reports, have never committed an act of terrorism.", remember that Arab and Muslim, at least in the US, are not the same thing.

    And why is this true? Many were no longer welcome in the lands of their birth, driven out by the Muslims. So yes, President Obama, I would pefer Christian Syrians over Muslim Syrians.

  • Arthur45||

    Dalmia seems to have uttered perhaps the most idiotic claim of all - keeping out Syrians allows ISIS to come in.
    Somehow she thinks the situation is analogous to banning weapons. Yeah, right, banning Syrians is just like banning guns (my very thought!!!). Dalmia needs to take some time off and recover her sense of logic. This article was obviously composed and accepted in order to fill space.

  • ||

    I do not want to engage in personal attacks normally but Shikha Dalmia is pretty shallow in all her articles. Her views resonate more with the left liberals than that of Libertarians. I am not sure how she gets space on Reason. She had written similar articles about India in past towing the line of Communist historians in India.

    Innocent victims in other country is not USA's responsibility. Whether Americans benefit by helping the refugees is a valid question and a libertarian might answer that as YES but arguing on the moral grounds and in slut shaming fashion is the left liberal way of argument.

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