[Oklahoma City, OK, November 16, 2015] Responding to today’s news that Governor Fallin has called on President Obama to suspend accepting any additional Syrian refugees into the United States, the Oklahoma Democratic Party issued the following statement:
Terrorism is about fear – fear in our communities, of our neighbors, and of things we know little or nothing about. It is about fear that changes the very essence of who we are as individuals and as a nation. We cannot let fear overpower our compassion and love for these men, women, and children fleeing violence and leaving all that they know to come to a land unknown just for a sense of safety.
Oklahoma knows first-hand the effects of terrorism and we know that it doesn’t have to come across borders or oceans. The United States sees our own form of home-grown terrorism every time someone picks up a gun and uses it against innocents or burns down a church because their faith is different. There comes a point, however, when people are no longer able to live in fear of those around them and they run and the United States of America has always been that beacon of light and hope to the world.
The United States has one of the most rigorous refugee admittance processes in the world. There are extensive security clearances, interviews, medical screenings, “cultural orientation” classes, and more before a refugee even steps foot onto American soil. For Governor Fallin to insinuate that the Obama Administration would not go to the fullest extent to ensure the rigorous process is followed is nothing more than a partisan stunt and an intentional misleading action to further instill fear in Oklahomans.
Oklahoma Democrats trust the men and women of our Homeland Security, intelligence agencies, state department, and military who put their lives on the line every day to keep our families safe.
This is a time to join the millions around the world in prayer and extend a compassionate hand in honor of the memory of all those lost in terrorist attacks, not just in Paris, Beirut, and Kenya but all over the world. This is a time to rise above our fears and show love to our brothers and sisters facing horrific violence every day.