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Hullabaloo


Monday, July 04, 2016

 
The other border

by digby

Susan Stewart, an artist, is a sponsor of Eman Mohammad and her family.
DAMON WINTER / THE NEW YORK TIMES

























Read this amazing story about Canadians adopting Syrian refugee families.  And then ask yourself what's wrong with the country that has that big statue that says "give me your tired your poor..." inscribed on it. 
Across Canada, ordinary citizens, distressed by news reports of drowning children and the shunning of desperate migrants, are intervening in one of the world’s most pressing problems. Their country allows them a rare power and responsibility: They can band together in small groups and personally resettle — essentially adopt — a refugee family. In Toronto alone, hockey moms, dog-walking friends, book club members, poker buddies and lawyers have formed circles to take in Syrian families. The Canadian government says sponsors officially number in the thousands, but the groups have many more extended members.

When Ms. McLorg walked into the hotel lobby to meet Mr. Mohammad and his wife, Eman, she had a letter to explain how sponsorship worked: For one year, Ms. McLorg and her group would provide financial and practical support, from subsidizing food and rent to supplying clothes to helping them learn English and find work. She and her partners had already raised more than 40,000 Canadian dollars (about $30,700), selected an apartment, talked to the local school and found a nearby mosque.

Ms. McLorg, the mother of two teenagers, made her way through the crowded lobby, a kind of purgatory for newly arrived Syrians. Another member of the group clutched a welcome sign she had written in Arabic but then realized she could not tell if the words faced up or down. When the Mohammads appeared, Ms. McLorg asked their permission to shake hands and took in the people standing before her, no longer just names on a form. Mr. Mohammad looked older than his 35 years. His wife was unreadable, wearing a flowing niqab that obscured her face except for a narrow slot for her eyes. Their four children, all under 10, wore donated parkas with the tags still on.
GOP politicians are trying to shut down sanctuary cities and ban all Muslims from immigrating. Trump wants to deport all the Syrian refugees we already have here.

Trump has said he doesn't anticipate building a wall along the Canadian border, mostly because it would be a logistical challenge:
''With Canada, you're talking about a massively long piece. You're talking about a border that would be about four times longer. 
''It would be very, very hard to do — and it is not our biggest problem. I don't care what anyone says. It is not our big problem.'' 
Our biggest problem, as we know, is with the vast numbers of Mxican rapists who are flooding the southern border. But Trump has also said that we have to be strong and we have to vigilant and we have to be smart about Syrian refugees. Canada is generously welcoming them into their country. Is Trump not worried about that?  Why not?

Just to be clear, I'm not worried about it. These refugees are obviously fleeing a horrifying, chaotic situation and they are looking for some kind of shelter. But Trump's concerns about borders and Mexicans and refugees and Muslims is all mixed because h doesn't know what he's talking about. But even though he hasn't been elected to anything, his idiotic ideas are driving policy just by the way he's articulating them. It's daft.

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