Should the United States allow child refugees into the country or increase restrictions?

Greg Lew, adjunct professor of philosophy: “Of course. You want to let children, orphans and widows enter the United States because they’re Syrian refugees and they’re seeking for asylum because they’re experiencing persecution during the civil war and ISIS persecution. It does make sense that we ought to allow them in because that’s based upon not only that we are a compassionate nation, but because it’s a part, or it’s a consonant with the political and moral values of our country. However, we can’t be naïve and we have to be very vigilant. In the moment of high emotional exuberance, we can’t forget the reality of ISIS’ intent and they’re very clear that they’re going to profit at the weakness and that weakness is our strength, which is that we pride ourselves on our value of our free, open society. And that they will use that in order to infiltrate and to perpetrate such an act of terrorism as clearly we see that in France with Abdel-Hamid Abu Oud, the mastermind of the terrorist attack. So it’s perfectly legitimate to discuss because that’s also part of our open society’s value –– to discuss and even to hold our government officials accountable for establishing a clear and strict vetting process so that we remind our government officials that it is their constitutional duty to protect and serve the public and to our citizens.”

Tom McDonough ‘19: “Well, the problem with the refugee crisis is that ISIS is a religiously-affiliated terrorist group. They’re not necessarily what we know as just being an organization, which would sponsor acts of terror. It’s more directed toward the Quran and it’s a misinterpretation of what is a belief in the Quran. So these people, they’re very devout, and they’re pledging their allegiance to the state and not necessarily to the group, so they’re not going to be inclined to leave, which means the refugees will most likely not be ISIS, so the threat will be very low.”

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