President Obama took a direct shot at Republican fear mongering and Islamophobic pandering today in a press conference from the G20. In his comments, he reminded everyone in the world why it is wrong for not only America, but any country that wants to call itself a free nation, to deny refugees fleeing ISIS a safe haven.
In two minutes, President Obama completely destroyed the Republicans that are looking for ways to discriminate against which refugees we take by forcing them through a filter of bigotry.
After listening to his statement, they should really feel embarrassed:
When I hear folks say that, ‘Well maybe we should just admit the Christians but not the Muslims’, when I hear political leaders suggesting that there would be a religious test for which a person who’s fleeing from a war-torn country is admitted, when some of those folks themselves come from families who benefited from protection when they were fleeing political persecution, that’s shameful. That’s not American. That’s not who we are.
Obama went on to say that it is important for those of us in leadership now, who have a forum and can be heard, not to fall into that trap and do what is right by helping these people. He also cited George W. Bush, who after 9/11 said “we are not at war with Islam,” while expressing his frustration that Bush’s own party has fallen from this ideal and chosen to ignore all of that. “On this, they should follow his example.”
Whether you are European or American, the values we are defending, the values we are fighting against ISIL for, are precisely that we don’t discriminate against people because of their faith. We don’t kill people because they’re different from us. That’s what separates us from them.
President Obama really is an example of what is the best about America in many ways. He has reminded a lot of nations around the world exactly why they should not emulate ISIS by answering blind hate with more of the same.
Watch Obama’s powerful comments in full, below:
Featured image via Vox screen capture