Friday, February 3, 2017

So Much of the World is Inside America

             “America is committed to the world because so much of the world is inside America”
Ronald Reagan

Hello Everyone,

I hope this note finds you well, and finding ways to work in your community on projects that bring people together.

Never did I think I’d write down words spoken by late U.S. president Ronald Reagan!

Angelina Jolie uses them in her New York Times opinion piece,  Refugee Policy Should Be Based on Facts Not Fear (here) Jolie is a special envoy of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, a film maker and actor.    

This post is a riff on her comments ... and I’ll do my best to put quotations marks or credit to Jolie when I paraphrase her.

Jolie writes that “refugees are men, women and children caught in the fury of war ...often the victims of terrorism themselves.”  And that of the 65 million refugees and displaced people worldwide, less than 1 percent of those are settled anywhere around the world during any one year.  So, 650,000 worldwide. 

Jolie points out that refugees into the United States are screened over several months through interviews, and “security checks carried out by the F.B.I., the National Counter-terrorism Center, the Department of Homeland Security and the State Department.”

The United States and other countries worldwide – including Canada – have agreed to take in refugees as an aspect of their participation in United Nations Conventions, international laws against discrimination on the grounds of faith. 

If I understand the situation, nations see such conventions in a practical way:  doing the good of taking in refugees, and seeing people as equal, are good for nations’ security.  What a funny blend of ethics and politics, but if it works, that's good. 

Jolie speaks passionately in her article about how openness and compassion towards others will bring those things home to ourselves and our country.  Her comments are worth reading and heeding. (here)

Very best regards,

Why's Woman

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