The United States should continue accepting Syrian refugees
Debate Rounds (3)
Now, I'm going to cut this short to hear my opponents basic views on this issue and I will get to most of my points in the next round.
I would also like to ask that my opponent knows a lot about the issue, as I would like this to be a fair and lively debate.
To deny that there isn't a security threat posed by the Syrian refugee influx is ludicrous. There is no real way to vet every single one of the refugees. This leaves a clear loophole for terrorists to take and land in our back yards, ready to kill our friends and families. There are other solutions for the refugee issue that do not put our necks in the guillotine.
I look forward to a lively debate.
Then there is the concern of the Paris attack. Yes, there are a lot of concerns about the safety of the American citizens after there was a problem with security in Paris, but the security in Paris is much different than that of the U.S. In Europe, those entering are fingerprinted and then are allowed to go to the mainland even if they don't have their identification documents, and they are then transferred through European countries to get to countries that will accept them. While doing so, these refugees do not even need a passport to go through these countries. Not only is there a difference in security, but compared to other groups, the Syrians are the most vetted group going to the U.S.
Let me give you an idea of how hard it would be for a member of ISIS to get into the U.S. by going with the rest of the Syrian refugees.
1. A member of ISIS would have to go to a refugee camp with four million other Syrian refugees in countries such as Jordan, Lebanon, or Turkey
2. Out of those 4 million people, this ISIS member would have to be one of only 23,000 other refugees to be even considered to be flown to the U.S.
3. This member would then have to be part of only 10,000 people that will be admitted into the U.S. within next year of those 23,000
4. Of those 10,000 people, the U.S. State Department has concluded that only 2% of them are considered "military aged males", with the rest being women, children, elderly, and the sick.
Therefore, the chances of any of the Syrian refugees being a member of ISIS is extremely low.
I'd also like to remind everyone that these people are not chosen randomly, as they are put through an extensive amount of background checks (which I can go into more depth in the next round.)
Currently there is no way to ensure that we would be safe if there were terrorists in the lot of refugees. It would be impossible to predict who is and who isn't a terrorist. This has been reiterated by plenty, including FBI director James Comey, who has said that "we can only query against that which we have collected and so if someone has never made a ripple in the pond in Syria in a way that would get their identity or their interest reflected in our database, we can query our database until the cows come home, but there will be nothing show up because we have no record of them." Being that Syria is a literal intelligence hell hole, it would be impossible to vet these people.
So what would the vetting process come down to if we have no real information on the people we are trying to bring into our country? It would come down to a series of weak testing. As Time magazine describes in the article I'll link at the end, the refugees would be interviewed and their information will be run through criminal databases. But if they never made a "ripple in the pond in Syria," there will be no information to verify that they are genuine asylum seekers and not terrorists.
For these reasons, a satisfactory vetting process is not possible. The process is inherently flawed from the beginning. Because of this, terrorists would be able to come into our country through the refugee process.
I must admit that the chances of a terrorist coming into our nation through this method is slim for the reason that there are many methods that would be simply easier for them. However, that doesn't mean that we shouldn't take measures to close this hole. When our friends and families are at risk, there are few methods that are inappropriate that ensure their safety.
Also, denying the refugees entry into our nation does not have to be a cruel act as you are making it out to be. There are measure that we can take that can guarantee both their humanity and our security. For example, the United States can set up a safe zone in Syria. Doing this, we would be able to more efficiently care for a greater number of refugees. We could ensure that they are being taken care of in a safe environment, free from the government bombings and ISIS genocide. At the same time, our government can do their duty and ensure the safety and security of each and every one of its citizens, its paramount duty.
Here are my sources:
Http://www.youtube.com....... "Jim Comey Testifies on Syrian Refugees." YouTube. YouTube, 21 Oct. 2015. Web. 03 Apr. 2016
Link to make it easier: https://www.youtube.com......
Altman, Alex. "This Is How the Syrian Refugee Screening Process Works." Time. Time, 17 Nov. 2015. Web. 03 Apr. 2016
Link to make it easier: http://time.com......
Finally, I'd like to bring up my final point today, which I believe is the most important point I have.
We can sit here debating whether we think we should let in Syrian refugees in the U.S. or not all day, but in the end, it's not up to anybody except for the federal government. Why is that so?
According to America's most well known and important document, the Constitution, in matters such as this, it is the federal government's decision. Let me be more specific. According to the supremacy clause in the Constitution, "federal laws trump state laws, except for matters constitutionally left to the states." However there are no matters in the constitution left to the states concerning immigration. So what's the federal law that states must comply with? According to the Refugee Act of 1980, the President has the power to admit refugees into the U.S. especially if an "unforeseen emergency refugee situation" exists, which one currently does. Furthermore, President Obama has made it very clear to accept all Syrian refugees into the United States.
Would the safe zones 100% guarantee the safety of the Syrian refugees? Absolutely not however the risk would be greatly mitigated by the NATO or UN military force that would secure the area. But in the end, here is my point: the chief concern of the United States government should be the safety of the American people. This means eliminating risks as they present themselves. Could be still be attacked from other avenues? Once again, of course we can. However, this is a debate solely concerning the refugee threat, not all of the other threats that Islamic Terrorism presents us. There are many roads we could take to help guarantee our safety however today we are only discussing a single one. This is also not a debate of whether or not the President "could" bring the refugees into the nation. That has been long established. The debate is over whether we "should" bring the refugees in.
Overall, there is a lot of emotion involved in this issue. We should not blind ourselves to the facts just so we can have a good feeling at the end of the day. The admittance of refugees presents an unarguable threat to the citizens of the United States that stems from a flawed and inherently ineffectual vetting process. It would be dangerous to everyone that we love to let them in. We have many steps to take to ensure our safety from threats abroad. Keeping these people out is a good place to start.
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