Out From Under the Umbrella

playing in the rain


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We Have No Use for Them

I says to myself, “Self, don’t do it.  Just don’t do it.”

But then myself did it anyway.  How does that work?  How does it work that when your brain tells you one thing you up and do another?  My brain is a real asshole sometimes.

I don’t even post to facebook very much and I rarely get into discussions.  It leads to nowhere.  As my blog buddy Swarn Gill said in his fine post, Social Media, Fear, Change, and Love, “either I’m utterly awful and changing people’s mind, or social media just isn’t the place to do it.  Or maybe it’s both.  Either way the result is the same.  My sanity and well-being is more important, because being bombarded with the kind of people there are out there just drains me of my strength.”

Anyway, I’m sorry Michael Mock for littering up your facebook post with my brain assholery.

Michael posted this:

So, apparently the Bible was right: perfect fear casts out love. That *is* how that verse goes, isn’t it?
::is depressed::

To which I posted a comment:

Right, my knee-jerk reaction had been, “Not accept refugees?!? Are you kidding me? How unAmerican? What’s next internment camps for the refugees we have already accepted? Tracking devices for a particlar religous sect? What happened to freedom of religion? Shut down mosques? Are Christian churches next?” Having had time to absorb all the fear-based rhetoric has made me re-think accepting refugees here. The backlash they might face would only increase their anymosity and create a whole ‘nother set of problems. Oh, don’t get me wrong. I think we should accept them, but I don’t think a lot of Americans are prepared or even capable of doing that. ::is depressed, too::

And what followed was even more depressing.  I didn’t expect what I said to get a pass.  But I didn’t expect a response like this, either:

Why not just feed them there, where they live?

Which is where I should have left it.  But did I? Nooooooo.  Because….well…my brain. Did I mention my brain?

So I responded(bad move):

They aren’t running because they don’t have food. They’re running from attacks on every side. Let’s see; I can either eat a bomb or a sword. Seems like a good selection to choose from. Where they live? They have no home anymore. They are displaced. They don’t have an address.

It only devolved from there.  I should have seen when the respondent said this…

…Ultimately- these people need to handle their shit- the 75% of them that are young men need to return and fight for their homeland, as men are expected to do. The women and children may remain in refugee camps locally.

But we as a population have no use for them, no reason to bring them over here, and no imaginable benefit– hell, their fellow syrians who immigrated her years ago don’t want them (and i don’t blame them- most of the Syrians over here are Syrian Christians, with some VERY interesting stories about their peaceful neighbors.(emphasis mine)

…that he had no interest in being compassionate, nor accurate facts.

This went back and forth for way longer than it should have.  I should have just stopped, dead in my tracks, right there.  We have no use for them.  There is no imaginable benefit.

I did provide some facts, to which he provided some of his own skewed facts.  We were using the same website to get them.  But even when I showed him the nature in which they were skewed he replied with:

Did you not see the stats I just posted were also from the UN? *shrug* To be honest? It doesn’t matter one way or the other- this still doesn’t address the question of why we’re paying to fly people here instead of leaving them In Situ.

Meh….facts, schmacts.  Doesn’t matter.  Facts are stupid.  No facts will change my mind.

It did take him quite a while to invoke Jesus’ name:

These people need food, and shelter, and safety and comfort- frankly, even Jesus Christ doesn’t require us to do more than that. The Good Samaritan didn’t find the man on the side of a road a job in Samaria- he helped him, paid for his treatment, and they both went on in their lives.

What is this twisted interpretation of those scriptures?  Suddenly the Parable of the Good Samaritan is a maxim on foreign policy and an analogy for doing only what’s required.  Somehow I thought that parable meant exactly the opposite.

I left it here because that part of my brain that isn’t an asshole kicked in and told me to get out:

The whole point of resettlement, not only in America(we would be taking relatively few in comparison to the total number) but around the world, was to help these people become self suffient and get back on their feet. Teaching them to fish, so to speak. But since they are of no use to us, perhaps it is better just to throw them their daily fish. My concern is that we will be doing that forever which will be far more expensive than plane tickets. In a few years we’ll be bitching about paying their way, too. I guess we can agree to disagree.

His parting shot:

*shrug* to be honest? Jesus commands us to help our neighbors. I have no idea, as an intelligent person or as a Christian, why the hell this is our issue- any of it. From helping the Afghanis fight communism to invading Iraq to this. The middle east is like this, it always has been like this, it always will be like this. All we can do is kick the can down the road- but as the Euros have seen- bring them in, and they keep fighting their ancient wars in your cities.

Sigh…we have no use for them. I wish I could say that this has been taken out of context, but I really don’t think it has.  Ugly is out there and I know it full well.  Yet each time I encounter it I’m just as surprised and dismayed.

::is depressed::

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Black Friday

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The Statue of Liberty was a gift to the U.S. by France as a symbol of freedom and democracy

Did you know, young man with the rest of your life ahead of you, when you left for the concert that yesterday would be your last day?  Did you hug your parents?  Did you tell them you love them?  Did you have plans for today?  For tomorrow? For the rest of your life?

Did you know, young couple madly in love, while you sat in the crisp air on the sidewalk of the café sipping your wine, having easy conversation with your lover, anticipating your meal that it would be your last? Were you talking about the weather?  The children?  Work?  Your future together?  That trip you were going to take?

How could you have known?

Who were you going to call today?  Your mother?  Your sister?  Was today the first day of that long-overdue vacation? Were your children playing soccer today?  Was your phone filled with contacts and a full calendar?  Is today your birthday?

I’ve thought of you full of life on the morning of November 13, 2015, what your life might have been like, full of promise. I’ve thought of you on the street, going about your daily life, not expecting what would come next.  I’ve thought of the horror you experienced as you realized what was about to happen to you.  I’ve thought of your lifeless body, shrouded with sheets, lying there in the coldness of the night.

I’ve also thought about the streets filled with people, defiantly marching in remembrance of you, chanting and holding their signs.  Their signs say they are not afraid.

notafraid

I suspect that they are afraid, though.  I’m afraid.  No one is safe.  No one is immune.  But we are something more, something stronger than fear.  We are courageous.  Take heart, France.  We are with you.  We are afraid, but we will stand with you through the fear today, the day after a very Black Friday.  And every day after that.

When we are afraid we ought not to occupy ourselves with endeavoring to prove that there is no danger, but in strengthening ourselves to go on in spite of the danger.  ~Mark Rutherford