As of last night, the governors of 26 American states announced that they would refuse to allow any Syrian refugees into their states. Twenty-five of the twenty-six are Republican, as I imagine anyone reading this already could have at least roughly guessed.
Eleven million people have been driven from their homes. A quarter million are dead. America has so far generously offered to take in 10,000. Starting next year.
Texas governor Greg Abbott said in a letter to President Obama about the attacks in Paris: “American humanitarian compassion could be exploited to expose Americans to similar deadly danger… Security comes first.”
It’s funny, but I can’t find the line in the Gospels in which Jesus warns us of the dangers of humanitarian compassion. I don’t remember the Good Samaritan citing his own security coming first and refusing to help the dying man in case the bandits were still nearby.
But then these are also the same men who have loudly proclaimed that society would be safer if everyone just carried handguns at all times. Who have insisted that gun massacres would be impossible if they and their swinging dicks happened to be in a room when violence erupted. They drink the Kool-Aid of their own heroism, even while they hide behind fortress walls as the world burns down, with no understanding that heroes have always been the ones to run towards danger on behalf of the innocent, not away.
You can’t have it both ways. You can’t on the one hand claim that your guns solve the problem of violence while on the other run frightened at the prospect of herds of refugees containing a hidden wolf. Of course that’s a danger. But if you only are kind when it costs you nothing, then you’re not a very good person.
So really, what would Jesus do, since that’s the question asked on all those bumper stickers and in all those books that fill up the Christian bookstores? Because I don’t think he’d listen to the dying and refuse to help out of fear of getting hurt. For all the vigorous exhortations of tough talk on the right, it’s those weak sauce liberals who aren’t afraid to help, who are willing to stop to aid the broken man despite not being the ones stockpiling arsenals.
Those 26 governors? They’re not Christian. They’re cowards.