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The Reproductive Justice Case for Taking in Refugees

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November 17, 2015

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“Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me: I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

These words come from a statue given to the United States as a gift from our oldest ally, who just experienced a horrific tragedy.

People should stand with France, but people need to be also aware of the tragedies that happened in Beirut and Baghdad and the on-going violent turmoil in Syria. Unfortunately, these attacks that have been claimed by ISIL have further reinforced islamaphobic and xenophobic rhetoric that further threatens the lives of refugees, two-thirds of which are women and children.

Saying that refugees have no place in the United States misses a few things: immigrants and refugees bring a labor force and new ideas, they are not terrorists, and they are human beings. Now, more than ever, is the time to accept refugees. ISIL wants countries to turn away refugees, because without a population to terrorize and recruit from, they are powerless. When countries send away refugees, they are stuck to be either slaughtered by ISIL or join the organization.

Historically, look at how we felt about not taking Jewish refugees for some time before WWII. If countries don’t open up their boarders in a welcoming sense soon, we could witness the next major genocide of innocent families in a few months (not to mention we basically already are).

For people who care about reproductive justice, knowing that there are families with small children in danger should be enough. Parents shouldn’t have to bring children into the world and then fear for their safety every day. Families deserve to be free from violence and fear. Let’s recognize the humanity of these refugees and help our fellow humans in need.

 

Image by Sathish J via flickr

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