North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple got some heat from the left when he announced, late last year, that he wanted President Barack Obama to pause the flow of refugees from Syria into the United States.
You see, the left’s position is that any criticism of refugee resettlement, or concern about the impact of refugees on public assistance programs and/or crime, is racism. So Dalrymple, in taking his position, was being racist in their eyes.
Except, get a load of this interesting tid-bit Forum reporter Archie Ingersoll who writes about the long history of Muslim settlement in North Dakota. The descendants of early Muslim settlers in North Dakota (fun fact: North America’s first mosque, seen above, was built near Ross, North Dakota) agree with Dalrymple on refugee resettlement:
In September, President Barack Obama announced plans to allow some 10,000 Syrian refugees into the U.S. But in the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks in November, more than half the country’s governors, including North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple, demanded that the flow of Syrian refugees be halted, citing concerns that the federal government’s screening process is inadequate to weed out terrorists.
On this issue, Omar and Juma side with Dalrymple and the other governors. “It’s not that I don’t want to let refugees in. But at this time, no,” Omar said.
From Juma’s perspective, the current situation is too uncertain to admit the refugees. “My opinion is leave them where they’re at,” he said.
Please read Ingersoll’s whole article. It’s worth your time. And check out this one too from the Dickinson Press profiling what life is like for a Muslim in North Dakota’s oil patch. Here’s a spoiler: Things are pretty good.
We can have a debate about whether or not Juma and Dalrymple are right about the Syrian refugees, but doesn’t this put lie to the idea that the position is inherently racist? Or, at the very least, pandering to racists?
The left is so quick to play the race card against their political enemies that they seem to have forgotten that it is possible to express concerns about the impacts of immigration and refugee resettlement on our communities without being some reincarnation of the Know Nothings.
I should point out, though, that the folks Ingersoll interviewed weren’t exactly fond of Donald Trump. And who can blame them? While the left overplays the race card, Trump seems content to pander to actual paranoid racists.