Last month the House passed a bill to redefine the process under which Syrian refugees could be admitted to the United States. As most of you will recall, it passed by a wide margin and is now being considered in the Senate, despite the President’s vow to veto it. One of the many congressmen who voted in favor of the measure was upstate New York representative Chris Gibson, joining with nearly fifty Democrats in the effort. Word seems to have trickled back to his home district this week where, despite a flood of news involving terror threats here in the U.S. and bad guys sneaking over various borders in the guise of refugees, a few of his constituents decided to adopt the Christmas spirit into a protest on this subject. (Time Warner Cable News)
Residents and religious leaders gathered outside of Congressman Chris Gibson’s office in Columbia County, protesting his stance on the settlement of Syrian refugees.
Dozens re-created a live nativity scene to represent hope and hospitality rather than fear and exclusion this holiday season.
Gibson voted last month to pass additional requirements for refugees to gain asylum. That bill is now in the Senate and President Obama has vowed to veto it.
Protesters wearing costumes, accompanied by actual livestock, sang Christmas hymns and urged the Congressman to change his mind.
“Refugees, people fleeing from violence like Jesus, Mary and Joseph that very first Christmas, they were refugees fleeing from the state and those people are welcome here, people from Syria,” said Joe Paparone, a protester.
This story really couldn’t be done justice without a picture.
First, just to be clear, I’d like to acknowledge that there is no direct relationship (that we know of) between Syed Rizwan Farook and the flood of Syrian refugees currently heading to all corners of the world. As far as we can tell thus far, Farook is a citizen and his wife came from Saudi Arabia, not Syria. But that doesn’t change the rather odd, if not obtuse timing of this protest. On the heels of what now appears to be an ISIS inspired terror attack which is one of the worst on American soil in the past decade, Gibson’s constituents are donning the likeness of the figures from the Nativity to encourage the vehicle which the terrorists used to infiltrate France and launch the Paris attacks.
There are none so blind as those who will not see.
For his part, Congressman Gibson released a statement to the protesters reminding them that he was part of a coalition of New York congressmen, including four Empire State Democrats, who voted for the measure. He was tactful enough not to mention that these holiday themed activists lived in the same state where the towers came down in 2001, though a few of them appeared to not be old enough to remember that awful day. But this is still a good reminder to the rest of us that there is apparently nothing that can shake liberal convictions even in the face of blatant and bloody reality.