Editorial – Refugees

Editorial from the Dec. 3 edition, discussing the Syrian refugees and what Canada is doing to help.

Since mid-August, I don’t think I have gone a day without reading a headline regarding the millions of refugees fleeing Syria. Just today, I read an article from The Guardian entitled “The plight of the refugees is the crisis of our times.” It was the first headline I read in the morning.

It’s depressing news, probably best depicted by photos. More people felt empathy after the photo of a Syrian toddler’s lifeless body went viral than they would through the mountain of articles examining the different facets of the issue.

The problem was compounded and worsened by the Paris attacks. Authorities found a Syrian passport on one of the suicide bombers outside of the Stade de France, stimulating theories that the attacker entered Europe amongst the other refugees. Authorities have not verified the passport, and are not sure if it is legitimate or was strategically placed there to cause confusion.

This has caused many to rethink supporting the refugees, who are fleeing the same terrorists that we are trying to fight against. Many are citing concerns about national security as a reason to impose more stringent screening methods or to refuse refugees all together. Currently, there are 31 states in the USA saying that they will not accept refugees, which is unconstitutional, and would be hard to monitor. There are no border crossings between states, allowing for anyone – refugees included – to move freely between states. And republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush wants to impose a test that would only allow Christian refugees into the United States.

Canada and the US both already have heavy screening processes for refugees. The Fernie Friends for Refugees started the sponsorship process for their first family over three years ago, and they haven’t even stepped foot in Canada, let alone Fernie yet. And many experts have debunked the theory that terrorists will find passage to North America by masking as refugees.

Amongst all of the negative news, Canada has been applauded for its continuing effort to support refugees. Esquire political writer Charles Pierce penned an article praising Trudeau for following through on his campaign promise to bring over 25,000 refugees by the end of 2015. Calgary made international news last week when refugees landed at their airport and were greeted by cheering locals, offering hugs, toys and words of support to the refugees. However, the government of Canada isn’t accepting any single men at this time, opting to resettle women and children instead.

This is an issue of huge proportions and ramifications. Any action taken is going to have a huge impact on the issue, even if that is no action at all. I definitely don’t understand all of the nuances, and am not claiming to, but I think in this situation, let’s give them the benefit of the doubt. I’d like to think they would do the same for us.


Just Posted

Fernie misses mark for Hockeyville final four

Residents of Fernie were surprised Saturday night, when the final four communities… Continue reading

Fernie local apprehended after break and enter

An eagle-eyed resident has helped Elk Valley police nab an alleged burgler.… Continue reading

Former Riders coach reflects

Mohr looking for new opportunities after contract ends

Athletes ready for world stage

Three Fernie athletes to compete in the world’s biggest junior freeride competition.

Hydro prices to surge

Elk Valley businesses brace for 3 per cent Hydro rate increase.

Vancouver Aquarium’s resident octopus released into ocean

Staff let the Giant Pacific octopus go into the waters near Bowen Island so she can reproduce

Ontario father grief stricken over murder of ex-wife and children

‘No words to explain,’ grieving father of slain teens says in statement

Russian Embassy calls Trudeau’s criticism of Putin unproductive

The Russian Embassy is firing back at Trudeau for criticizing President Vladimir Putin

Murder charge upgraded for man accused in Toronto gay village death

Man accused the death of a woman in the Toronto gay village had charge upgraded after new evidence

Former NHL player Theo Fleury visits B.C. First Nations community

Abuse survivor Theo Fleury has been working with communities focusing on healing since 2009 and visited Esketemc First Nation in the Cariboo this week.

A B.C. council takes action in wake of former municipal politician’s sentencing

Dave Murray was sentenced to nine months for a sexual assault that occurred 26 years ago.

Harsher fines, new off-road vehicle rules in effect to combat B.C. wildfires

Anyone who starts a wildfire could be ordered to pay up to $1,000,000

Muddy water found in taps at B.C. hospital prompts investigation

Northern Health to hire consultant to examine three facilities for potential contamination

RCMP officer charged after pedestrian struck at crosswalk

A man suffered a broken leg and head lacerations after being struck by the police vehicle in 2017

Most Read