In this blog, I have discussed how the decline in the African elephant population is intricately connected to the problems humans face – climate change, violence, corrupt governments, etc. I have therefore decided to dedicate a few posts to the refugee crisis in various African countries.
According to the UN Refugee Agency, there are two million refugees (half displaced in the country, half in the nearby region) from Somalia, one of the seven countries listed by the Trump administration as a potential danger to US security. Refugees are banned from entering for at least four months.
In 2016, there were about 9000 Somali refugees admitted to the US (which has a population of almost 325 million).
The UNHCR says in regards to Somalia, “There is a growing sense of hopelessness in the camps, because people are feeling forgotten.”
Refugees are some of the most resilient people. They have faced war, starvation, and disease. They have lost just about everything – not just their material goods, but also family and community members – in the most tragic circumstances.
In my opinion, the idea that the US should be “extreme vetting” refugees is absurd. They already have a lengthy (2 years), comprehensive vetting process in place (including in-person interviews, health screenings, and a cultural orientation program). It is important to point out that no terrorist attacks instigated by refugees have ever happened in the US. Adding more time to refugees’ long wait for relief is cruel.
Taking care of the most vulnerable populations of this world, whether they be human or animal, should be a moral priority for all.
(Photo I took at my city’s rally…500 people showed up in below freezing temperatures!)