By Stan Welch
The Anderson County Council approved a resolution Tuesday night asserting the Council’s non-participation in the Refugee Resettlement Project, which has the goal of the relocation of some two hundred thousand Syrian refugees across the United States.
Council members Cindy Wilson, Tom Allen, and Francis Crowder sponsored the resolution, which both expresses the county council’s opposition to the acceptance of any refugees; and also calls for all public officials, elected or otherwise, to “neither approve nor proceed with any such resettlement” until the General Assembly can reconvene and conduct a vote that will accurately reflect the will of the people in regards to this issue. Governor Haley has publicly expressed her willingness to accept refugees into the state.
Councilman Allen recalled the national atmosphere during what he called his formative years during the late Fifties and Sixties.”America was booming and the attitude was reflective of our Constitution and also the words on the Statue of Liberty. Everyone was welcome and religion was a matter of the individual conscience. As a retired Army colonel, I have been to a lot of countries around the world, and I assure you that the majority of the people are good, peaceful people just trying to survive and better themselves.
“But let’s fast forward till today. An awful lot has changed. We now see a group of people who are openly calling for the death of Christians across the world, and who consider he U.S. As some great Satan to be attacked and destroyed.”
Allen explained that even a small percentage of Muslims, who number almost two billion worldwide, amounts to millions of Muslims who seek to harm Christians and Americans. “We have no way to vet these people,most of whom appear to be healthy, relatively young males, to be sure that they are actually fleeing conditions in Syria, and not simply infiltrating our country; where, by the way, we will be forced to feed them, employ them, provide housing and medical care for them. This is simply a bad idea on many different levels.”
Councilwoman Cindy Wilson pointed out that livestock coming into the country would undergo a more rigorous screening and quarantine process than these potential refugees. “The double standards in this situation are insane. An American citizen can’t have their driver’s license picture taken while wearing a ball cap, but a Muslim woman can wear a burka that completely masks her face.”
Wilson also reiterated Allen’s complaint that the five wealthy Arab nations that adjoin Syria have refused to take a single refugee, citing security concerns. “If their neighbors won’t even help them, why does it fall to the United States to do it?”
Councilman Crowder focused on the challenge to Constitutional law that is posed by the Muslim allegiance to Shariah law, which in some well established Muslin enclaves in America is the prevailing authority. “I know we aren’t supposed to discuss our religion up here, but the threats posed to Christians, both here and in Europe, are real, and serious. I realize that as Christians we are called on to sometimes turn the other cheek, but how far do we go?”
Councilwoman Gracie Floyd expressed her awareness of the problems posed by the refugee project, saying that she had struggled and prayed about the issue. “We all want to do the right thing and help those that we can, but I also recognize the problems involved.”
Council chairman Tommy Dunn told the members as well as the sparse audience that the vote essentially was symbolic. “We aren’t going to solve world peace by doing this, and if the state listens to us, it will be the first time. But we can at least make our voice heard.”
Asked by Councilman Ken Waters if the resolution would allow the county to refuse to accept refugees if the state participates, Dunn said, “I don’t believe so. We may find out.”
Following the discussion, the Council voted unanimously to approve the resolution.