Giving others a chance to be thankful

Should America accept Syrian refugees?

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With only days left before Thanksgiving, a time to give thanks and be grateful for the thousands of refugees in search of freedom who arrived in America many years ago, the country is torn between whether or not we should resettle 10,000 refugees in search of freedom in America today.

After the attacks in Paris that have been making the headlines just about every day since the horrific event, many are persuaded that America must stop taking in Syrian refugees.

The idea that we need to stop taking in refugees is one born and raised by fear. The people have been overwhelmed by fear as they watched the coverage of the attacks, driven by fear to change their beliefs, and overcome by fear as they proclaim the terror that can come with accepting refugees.

The more fear that the people feel, the more the people let fear change how they live their lives, and the more the people let fear change what we as a country stand for, the more the terrorists have won.

With every individual that lets the fear control them, the terrorists have met a goal. They want us to be afraid, they want us to change how we live driven by the fear they bring, and they want us to stop accepting the refugees so that they can slaughter them in a land that they wish to control.

This is their goal, their desire, their endgame. They want nothing more than for us to live in fear. That is what it means to be a terrorist.

Currently the governors of 31 states, including Gov. Bruce Rauner here in Illinois, have subjected themselves to the fear and do not believe that we should accept refugees. Their refusal to accept them has made headlines as well, despite them not even being able to make that call since it is in the hands of the federal government.

We can not change how they feel, we can only maintain how we feel. We can not let them influence us into giving them what they want. We can not give them our fear or our hate.

Even in Paris, the birthplace of this debate and the victim of the attacks, people made widows on that infamous day refuse to give terrorists their hate and French President François Hollande will still accept thousands of refugees in the future.

Why is our country letting this be such a heated debate?

Do we refuse to accept out of fear that terrorists pretending to be refugees could enter our country?

Not only have terrorists hiding as refugees already been caught in the screening process, but there are already also much easier ways to get in.

According to CNN, none of the terrorists involved in the Paris attacks were refugees in the first place, which can be linked to the fact that it is supposedly the hardest way to get into a country. America has an 18 to 24 month screening process before allowing entry whereas a tourist visa, which may not even be required, may only take up to a few days.

Do we refuse to accept because, as some have argued, we already have veterans in our own country who are homeless?

While this is an issue, it is a matter of sponsorships. Veterans are homeless because people are not sponsoring them, but refugees are being sponsored. Since the government cannot force citizens to sponsor, that is the fault of the people, not the government. If there are some who are willing to help refugees, they should not be stopped from choosing to help someone in need.

Do we refuse to accept because it could hurt the economy?

Sponsorships house refugees until they are able to get jobs and help themselves and the economy on their own.

The truth is there is no logical reason to not accept these people.

So on this upcoming holiday, be thankful for being able to live freely thanks to ancestral refugees, and support the giving of others the possibility to be thankful for the same thing.