Members of the Congressional Black Caucus said they hold the safety of the United States as its number one priority, and take seriously the country’s humanitarian responsibility to vulnerable populations that are under attack and desperately fleeing severe violence and persecution. The fabric of America is built on the premise that those who seek refuge should be able to find it here.
“The Congressional Black Caucus is committed to upholding longstanding American principles of providing refuge to individuals whose lives have been ravaged by war and violence,” said CBC Chairman G. K. Butterfield (NC-01). “The Paris attacks were heinous and reprehensible and our hearts go out to the individuals who have been impacted by these events. Therefore, America cannot disregard the significance of our historic commitment to providing refuge for those who desperately need it. To turn a blind eye to the struggles of others, regardless of where they are from, is sad and has no place in American society.”
“We can and must seek greater security without losing our moral compass,” said Rep. Gregory W. Meeks (NY-05), Senior Member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. “As an African-American I know what it feels like to be a member of a community where people lived in fear for their safety and were oppressed by those in power. I want better for America and all nations that uphold the virtues of liberty. Turning our backs on Syrian refugees is not an option.”
“With the recent attacks in Paris, the United States is understandably concerned about potential threats at home,” said Rep. Bennie Thompson (MS-02), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security. “However, we cannot let the same hatred displayed by the Paris attackers influence our policies or deter us from doing what is right. We have an opportunity to demonstrate global citizenship by helping Syrian refugees, many of whom are innocent woman and children. Being compassionate does not require that our national security be sacrificed or compromised. We must always remember that we are all in this world together and should do all we can to help each other; not doing so is not only cruel, but it is also un-American.”