Since the outbreak of the Civil War in Syria, an estimated 11 million Syrians have left their homes (syrianrefugees.eu).These syring have fled to other countries such as Turkey, Lebanon, Iraq,Germany and Jordan allowing them to escape the danger that is prevalent in Syria.
So far, Turkey has accepted about 2.7 million refugees, Lebanon has accepted approximately 1 million, Iraq has taken 3.1 million, Germany has about 1.8 million and Jordan has approximately 650,000 refugees (amnesty.org). All of these countries have taken a stand against for the Syrian refugees by allowing to stay in their countries.
However, there are still many countries in the world who are refusing to allow Syrian refugees into their country in fear of terrorists groups potentially entering. One of these terrorists groups that the countries fear is ISIS.
The United States of America is one country that is not allowing Syrian Refugees because of this fear. Recently, Trump issued an executive order which banned nations of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States for at least the next 90 days. The countries that were affected were, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen. These countries were named “in a 2016 law concerning immigration visas as ‘countries of concern’”(CNN). This executive order bans people from fleeing from Syria indefinitely, and stopped all admission of all refugees to the United States for four months.
Many people in the United Stated have took a stand against the action of our President by voicing their opinion. For example, a federal judge in Brooklyn took a stand against the order by blocking part of the president’s actions, preventing government from
deporting some arrivals who were affected by the Executive Order. Also, former acting Attorney General Sally Yates’ did not uphold Trump’s Executive Order and instructed the justice department to follow suit. Sally Yates took a stand by sticking up for what she believes is morally correct. Yates believed that banning muslims from entering the country can not be justified. Yates completed this action as she believes that she is “responsible for ensuring that the positions we take in court remain consistent with this institution’s solemn obligation to always seek justice and stand for what is right”. By Yates taking a stand against the president in the high position she was in, she made a lasting impact on our country because she publicly took stand.
I believe that the global community should continue to take a stand and try to help these refugees that are suffering in Syria. We have to focus on the Humanitarian aspect of this crisis rather than the politics. It is estimated that there were over 470,000 Syrian casualties in 2016, and most of these casualties were innocent civilians. This situation needs to be addressed and as the United States being a world leader, it is time that we take the lead on this crisis and accept more Syrian refugees and provide them healthy living areas.
The Syrian refugees crisis, indirectly relates to my National History Day Topic. For national history day this year, Myr group and I are doing a performance on Constance Baker Motley. Constance Baker Motley, was a lawyer for the NAACP during the 1950’s and 60’s.
She was involved in many pivotal civil rights case, especially for educational equality. One of Motley’s most well known cases was Meredith V. Fair, where she fought for James Meredith, an African American student, to go to the University of Mississippi, in 1961, where racism was at its worst.As a lawyer at the NAACP, Motley argued 10 cases in front of the Supreme Court, winning nine of them. The tenth case, Swain v. Alabama, was overturned in her favor 20 years later. After her career in law, she was elected to the New York State Senate, became the Borough President of Manhattan, and was appointed to the Federal Bench by Lyndon B. Johnson where she continued to fight for equality. Motley took a stand for equality when no one else would. This is very apparent as she was a woman of many firsts: she was the first black woman to argue a case in front of the supreme court, the first black women to be a senator, and the first black women to be a federal judge. Furthermore, she received over 40 awards throughout her career.
Like Judge Motley, Former Attorney General, Yates, took a stand against something they believed. Our global community needs to change their attitude to one that is similar to Constance Baker Motley and Sally Yates. These women did not act in fear, like American is doing right now. They took stand for what they believed and did not let fear control their actions.
To find out more on Constance Baker Motley, watch the trailer of the documentary about her, produced by Joel Motley and R.E. Rodgers, which will be coming out soon :