if only we had a seasonally appropriate story about middle eastern people seeking refuge being turned away by the heartless— Oliver Willis (@owillis) November 16, 2015
As of writing this profoundly inane comparison has been retweeted 20,000 times, thus proving that at least 20,000 people lack more than two functioning brain cells with which to think. I mean, we can play games with this all day. For example:
Actually, it's about a couple obliged by their meddling government to leave home and report to the tax authorities. https://t.co/MGciGuLLrr— Kevin D. Williamson (@KevinNR) November 18, 2015
Sarcasm aside, the comparison fails for the simple fact that it has nothing in common with the current situation. The Holy family wasn't fleeing war, they were reporting for a census. Their move didn't come on the heels of a massive terrorist attack, it was government ordered. They weren't seeking asylum in a foreign country, they were going to their home town. The inn keeper wasn't heartless, he was out of space. He didn't turn them away, he let them stay in the manger!
Other than that, good job Mr. Willis! Way to use that guy you don't believe in to shame those people who do!
Then there's this:
Way to show Christian charity there Governor. Glad to see that Texas is a place that welcomes the least of these. But seriously, this is profoundly silly and is clearly a ploy to his base. Texas, being a state, does not have any real say over federal immigration policies. Once an immigrant or refugee is inside the federal borders he or she is free to move about the country. No papers.BREAKING: Texas will not accept any Syrian refugees & I demand the U.S. act similarly. Security comes first. https://t.co/uE34eluXYd— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) November 16, 2015
That all being said, I have no idea what to actually do about the current refugee crisis. Kevin William at NRO has some good thoughts on the matter which essentially boil down to "proceed with caution." And happily enough that conversation is happening, with Democrats like Senator Schumer joining Republicans in saying a pause in immigration might be necessary.
Unhappily, its being overshadowed by the idiots throwing dung at each other. As our illustrious president demonstrated mere hours ago when he said he can't think of a "more potent recruitment tool for Isis" than Republican rhetoric on Syrian refugees. Yeah. I'm sure all those drone bombings of weddings were way less upsetting.
All this posturing is unhelpful, polarizing, and generally divides people into two equally asinine camps. The "how unchristian of you" camp ignores the very real security challenge posed by the present situation, while the "keep 'em out" camp ignores the very real human suffering that we ought to alleviate as much as is reasonably achievable.
As Kevin Williamson points out, the question isn't "do we help refugees?", of course we do. The question is do we help these refugees at this time in these numbers, under these circumstances. The answer to that depends greatly on your own values, the perceived threat level, and personal risk tolerance. On a national level we'll only find an answer through honest and open discussion.
So, basically, never.