Dear Facebook Friends: A Thought on Syrian Refugees

Dear Facebook Friends: A Thought on Syrian Refugees

In the beginning of September photos surfaced of a three-year-old Syrian boy laying on a beach off the coast of Turkey. The child wasn’t playing in the sand, feeling the beads in between his fingers, and he wasn’t soaking in the warm rays of the sun as he searched for sea shells with his family.

His name was Aylan, and he was dead. He was facedown on the cold earth, drowned after attempting to flee in a 15-foot boat and seek refuge in Europe. Aylan, his mother and his five-year-old brother did not survive when their small boat capsized in the ocean. Escaping one hell, only to be taken by another.

It’s an image that is burned into my mind, and is horrific for anyone to see. But it’s one that everyone should see.

Fastforwarding to mid-November, I logged onto my facebook to see a number of disturbing posts, ranging from “Refugees are not OUR problem,” to “Trump’s idea to build a wall doesn’t seem so bad now, does it?”

I’m sorry, but is that how low we have become? That we can sit in our comfortable dorm rooms and warm homes and turn on our smartphones to tell our fellow Americans to lock the gates? To say that we should not accept the millions of young children and families who are displaced from their homes because terror and violence has engulfed their country and threatened their lives, solely based on their religious beliefs?

Child refugees do not want to come to the United States to pocket your tax money. Syrian mothers don’t want to bomb your homes. A three-year-old boy is not a member of a terrorist organization. They just want to escape their war-torn country. They aren’t terrorists because they are muslim or because they are from Syria, they are human beings trying to escape the same terrorism we fear.

When I see a post on Facebook that upsets me, it is easy to just hit “unfriend” or “unfollow.” But I can’t unfollow the 24 governors in our country who say they do not want to accept refugees, and hope that their opinions aren’t directly affecting the outcome of nations, societies, and families.

If a mother and child knocked on your door seeking shelter from the immediate violence of the outside world, would you dead bolt the door? I’m sure for many Christians, this scenario may seem familiar; maybe reminiscent of a story you’ve heard.

For the sake of humanity, I hope you would open the door.