This is Real Patriotism: Kids Choir Welcomes Syrian Refugees With Song in Arabic


While right-wing America is busy collectively panicking at the thought of Muslim immigrants from Syria, Canada is busy welcoming multiculturalism with open arms and a message so powerful it’s gone viral.

Fear is the mind-killer

Americans are not all cowards, just the vast majority of the ones sitting on the right wing. In the name of “patriotism,” they espouse toxic, fascist ideologies that range from total bans on all Muslims in the country to deportation to forcing Muslims to wear badges identifying who they are.

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Of course, this is the same crowd that believes the office of the White House is utterly sacrosanct and can do no wrong when someone they agree with is in there while committing treason on a grand scale when someone they disagree with is in there. “Patriotism” as a concept is as slimy and two-faced as they are.

American patriotism is respecting multiculturalism. If our country has a teleological narrative at all, it’s the destiny to be a nation of immigrants. To deny this is to deny what our country is — and that’s fundamentally unpatriotic.

For an example of this in action, we look to our neighbors in the cold north, where instead of running around like the world is ending, they’re embracing their similar heritage in an act that’s so powerful it’s gone viral:

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wd1IU_6rXNk&w=560&h=315]

The video above shows an Ottawa children’s choir singing a welcome song in Arabic; called “Tala’ al-Badru ‘Alayna,” the song is a traditional Islamic song that was sung to the Prophet Muhammad while he sought refugee in Medina after the natives of Mecca ran him out.

The YouTube video is called, “Welcome To Canada Syrian Refugees,” and arranged by the Canadian composer Laura Hawley. According to the choir’s director, Robert Filion, the song was renamed “Alhamdoulilah” and performed at a festival called “Les Choralies à De La Salle.” The school board initially said that song was performed to welcome refugees, but Filion said it wasn’t.

According to Filion, the song was originally an attempt to bring in diversity and cultural inclusion. When asked by Buzzfeed, Filion said, “It had nothing to do, for us, with the Syrian refugee crisis or anything else going on in the world right now.” He did say, however, “I wish I had thought of that,” and added ,“Now it has even more meaning.”

The video has touched individuals from all over the world, and has been viewed over 50,000 times.

This is what weakens Daesh. This is what threatens their existence. They prey on bitterness and resentment, and they depend on the American right-wing to continue feeding disenfranchised Muslims into their war machine. And if it’s not Daesh, it’ll be some other organization. Opening your arms and saying, “welcome home, neighbor” undermines various terror groups in ways that no amount of bombing can manage.


Feature image via screen capture

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