In another attempt to alienate Syrian refugees entering the country, Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump implored his supporters in Warwick, Rhode Island, on Monday to lock their doors to keep safe from the new residents of their state.
“Here’s one I don’t like… Syrian refugees are now being resettled in Rhode Island,” the billionaire began. “We don't know who these people are. We don't know where they're from. They have no documentation. We all have hearts and we can build safe zones in Syria and we'll get the Gulf states to put up the money. We're not putting up the money, but I'll get that done. But you know what? We can't let this happen.”
Reciting factoids from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the White House hopeful suggested the “incompetent” United States government is letting terrorists enter the country. He also cited the mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, to drive his point across and further demonize the refugees who have fled their war-torn countries and risked their lives in search of a safe haven.
“Lock your doors folks, OK, lock your doors,” Trump continued. “There's no documentation, we have our incompetent government people letting them in by the thousands, and who knows, maybe it's ISIS. You see what happens with two people that became radicalized in California, where they shot and killed all their coworkers. Not with me, folks, it's not happening with me.”
Considering the former reality TV star’s blatant hatred toward Muslims and anti-refugees bigotry, the latest statements don’t come as much of a surprise. And perhaps it shouldn't be a surprise that Trump’s fearmongering rant was completely deceptive.
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While the government is indeed resettling refugees in Rhode Island, the part about them being “undocumented” is not true. Refugees applying for immigration have to endure a lengthy process involving a series of interviews before being allowed in the country — not to mention the application process also requires documents like birth certificates, report cards from school, identification cards, driver’s licenses, passports and old utility bills.
Moreover, according to a 2015 report by Washington, D.C.-based Migration Policy Institute, the U.S. resettled 784,000 refugees since Sept. 11, 2001, and since then only three resettled refugees were arrested for planning alleged terrorist activities. The authorities later confirmed two of the suspects were not planning an attack while the plans of the third were “barely credible.”
As far as the San Bernardino shooters Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik are concerned, they might have been “radicalized” but they weren’t refugees. Farook was born in Chicago, Illinois, while his wife entered the country legally on K-1 visa. In addition to that, the FBI’s latest probe into the shooter’s iPhone revealed no ties with ISIS.
It is about time Trump starts caring about facts when he spews his bigotry to ignite hatred among people.
Watch the complete speech in the video below:
Thumbnail/Banner Credits: Andrew Kelly / Reuters