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This is going to be a very controversial topic as I am sure many people have a very strong opinion on it based upon where they live and situations that they have been in but I would like to get opinions from people around the world and not just in the United States about refugees coming into their countries.

My opinion:

Unfortunately in the United States we have politicians using their power to spread propaganda based on nothing but fear that the United States should not accept any muslim refugees even if they were screened before hand. In my view all this is doing is saying to these people fleeing for their lives to go back where they came from where they will face the choice of being forced to join ISIS or watch their families get beheaded. These politicians are using events like the Paris and Brussels attacks to spread their ideas and people seem to be eating it up. From the research I have conducted NONE of the people involved in either of those attacks where in the respected country posing as a refugee but in fact they were all citizens of the countries that they attacked meaning, statistically, that if those countries didn't let in refugees they would have not been any safer. Doing more research of my own I haven't been able to find any cases where a terrorist came into the country posing as a refuge (and if there is something out there I missed I'd love to read it). Also I don't want to be on the side of history that led to the murders of potentially thousands (if not millions) of innocent people.

With my opinion stated I would like to hear what other peoples opinions are on this topic. Also like I said before this is controversial and an intelligent discussion would be nice to have. So please, be respectful of peoples opinions and don't attack them personally.

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It helps with discussions like this to define the words used since their actual meaning differs considerably from how people tend to interpret them.

Muslim: Follower of a specific religious doctrine - see also catholic, buddhist, pastafarian.
Extremist: Someone whose views on a subject are quite distant from the common view on that subject - see social justice warrior, fundamentalist, jehovah's witness, veganist.
Terrorist: Someone who uses fear and typically violence to further their own goals - see ISIS, Ku Kux Klan, Timothy McVeigh, IRA, ETA, Rote Armee Fraction.
Immigrant: Someone who left their homeland to further their own goals - see migrant worker, colonist, invader.
Refugee: Someone who was forced by the situation in their homeland (war, famine, ethnic cleansing, dissenting against a repressive regime) to become an immigrant.

To understand the correct definition of a word and thus the differences between the meaning of the words helps understand the fallacies in the current rhetoric.

For example, how are you going to stop muslims entering America? If you want to separate church and state (you know, that whole first amendment stuff people hide behind when they utter these stupid ideas? That also contains this) there's no legal way to enforce this. Also, as of 2011 there were over 2.5 muslims living in the US, and many, I'm sure, were born there so they have US citizenship. On what grounds can any government revoke their own citizen's citizenship? The only way I know of is when a person has dual-citizenship, but that's not as common as you might think.

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Using coopers definitions, I have zero issue with anyone of any faith usually, as long as that faith isn't used to discriminate against, deny rights to, or deny medical assistance to anyone else. Pretty much as long as by action or inaction you harm noone, believe as you wish, just keep it in your heart, your home, your place of worship, and out of laws, schools, hospitals etc.

Refugees are fleeing from horrible situations, I say welcome them in. Yes screen them as they enter, that's already done. Make sure to get them any and all of the local vaccines etc (seriously this is a big issue that can cause worse problems down the line), and if at all possible have decent places for them to live. I'm not talking palatial houses here, but a roof over their head, living space, bedrooms, bathrooms. Have people there to help them integrate into the society they now live in (integration is a big deal, without it you have ghetto-isation which just creates the extremists they were likely fleeing in the first place).

Regarding separation of church and state, that's a great ideal, and I wish it existed in more places. Could certainly do with it here in Ireland.....

I never understood hatred against those who are different, be it by skin colour, gender, sexuality, or belief. We all bleed red. We are all human. We should try and help others when possible. Not for some potential reward in an afterlife, not because it makes us look good in front of others, but because it's the RIGHT thing to do. When we uplift those most in need, we uplift us all.

Edited by Rkiver
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What would I do?

You live in Syria and ISIS is coming. You're either with them or against them. If you're with them you can pick up a weapon and fight. If you're against them you' ll die a horrible death and your wife and daughter will be held as slaves. What would you do? I would do everthing I can to protect my family, I would flee.

They (refugees) are here now and they have good reasons. All we can do is welcome them, anything else would be illogical. There are children for godsake.

But I do worry for the long term consequences. What does it still mean to be Dutch? I think maybe the time is over where we can think I'm Dutch, I'm Irish, I'm American. We're all World citizens and I currently live in the Netherlands.

Some subject for a techieforum :D

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But I do worry for the long term consequences. What does it still mean to be Dutch? I think maybe the time is over where we can think I'm Dutch, I'm Irish, I'm American. We're all World citizens and I currently live in the Netherlands.

Well said.

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It's an interesting point. If you see a threat emerging you have not 2 but 3 options: Fight, flee, weather the storm and try to make the most of it. It's not all black & white and in spite of the growing trend of claiming "if Trump becomes president I'm moving to ${COUNTRY}" not a lot of people would actually do that because you would lose so much. The more you possess (or rather, the more you have to lose) the higher the inertia.

The resistance people show against refugees can thus far be mostly distilled into one of "they'll take our jobs!", "they've come to free-load", "they're criminals/terrorists", "we'll lose our identity", "I hate forrenners".

- They'll take our jobs.

First of all an asylum seeker, at least in .NL, isn't allowed to work full-time. It's something like 60% of the year because when it's more than that they're entitled to benefits (pension and stuff) and we don't want to give this to someone who isn't a citizen yet and might very well not become one. This also means that as an employer you can't rely on them in that regard, plus their application might get turned down meaning one less worker. Consequence is that these people end up with shit jobs where the person doing the work is easily replaceable. Seasonal work, boring factory work, cleaning work, the type of job the people who complain the most would snub their nose at. But for the time they are allowed to work, they'll contribute to the society since they do get taxed like a normal worker and with a bit of luck they'll integrate by being exposed to the native populace.

- They've come to free-load.

Um, no. They didn't just wake up one morning and decided to occupy a couch in Germany or whatever. They determined that their prospects of advancing themselves are better served elsewhere, to the point where they're willing to give up what they build up in their native country. In the case of a refugee, that "prospects of advancing themselves" means "prospects of staying alive". Did you ever talk to a poor person? I don't mean a homeless person, but someone who relies on food stamps (US) and/or food banks (EU) to survive. They're trying to live off of nothing more than benefits. That's *tough* to do. Make no mistake about it, free-loading is a lot harder than you think and the vast majority of people who are currently living off benefits would do close to any job to get out of that situation. An immigrant is no exception. Another thing to note is that in order to be eligible for benefits, you're typically required to reside in that country legally for an extended period of time. You could argue that having some form of housing is a benefit, but I'd argue that's more a necessity.

- They're criminals/terrorists.

As stated already, there's ZERO proof any terrorist thus far went the refugee route. The typical approach up until now is that a radicalized citizen goes to a desert for 'vacation' then comes back home again. The "criminal" angle is mostly a combination of discrimination and desperation resulting from the inability to legally find a source of income.

- We'll lose our identity.

Compared to middle-eastern cultures, our culture tends to be a lot more open. Women rights and what have you to name but one. When someone moves to a different culture, they adapt. It's what people do and, frankly, are rather good at. Try going on a holiday to a country where they don't understand any language you're familiar with and vice versa, their script is wildly different from yours (rural China, say) and getting anything done. If that will be your regular situation for the next few months, you'll try to learn at least a few words to get around. You adapt. You integrate. But when you get bunched up into camps or large facilities where you only encounter people from your own culture, there's zero incentive to adapt. So by normal people pushing the foreigners away they actually prevent them from integrating. You end up with enclaves/ghettos where people go about their lives the same way they would in their native culture. That part of your country just wound up more a part of their country in terms of culture. And the main group to blame for that is the existing populace who resisted their integration.

- I hate forrenners.

Discrimination is a fact of life I'm sad to say. There's no sense in arguing with someone that claims a person is less than another simply because they appear different.

Except gingers. They're an abomination and should be burned on sight.

Edited by cooper
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