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NOV 19 - NOV 26, 2015

Lorigo Deserves Credit for Urging Push Back on Syrian Refugees

Tony Farina

NOV 19, 2015

Joe Lorigo started the ball rolling locally

Far from being ignorant of the resettling process, as alleged by Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz, county lawmaker Joseph Lorigo (C-West Seneca) should be applauded for urging Poloncarz to reverse his stance on accepting Syrian refugees into the county.

Lorigo didn’t back down from his original tweet last Saturday night on the subject of not accepting Syrian refugees despite the strong backlash from Poloncarz.  “In a news release on Sunday, Lorigo said “I believe the risk to our community is far too great,” saying “we must do everything can to protect the citizens of Erie County and Western New York.”

His words are clearly aimed at local leaders, like Poloncarz and by extension Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster who is also on record in favor of accepting the Syrian refugees and not pushing back against state and federal officials who are backing the resettlement process. 

Maybe Poloncarz, Dyster, and others should pay more heed to what happened in Paris last Friday night as French authorities now believe that a 27-year-old Belgian man (now dead) who fought in Syria for the Islamic State was the mastermind behind the terrorist attacks that killed 129 and injured about 350 others.

They should also listen to the words of French President Francois Hollande who said, as reported in the New York Times on Monday, the attacks had been “planned in Syria, organized in Belgium, perpetrated on our own soil with French complicity,” and he described Syria as “the biggest factory of terrorists the world has ever known.”

Now the refugee problem is a human crisis, to be sure, but welcoming Syrian refugees into Western New York is extremely risky, as Lorigo is warning, given the ability of some of those refugees to come with the purpose of killing innocent people as part of their religious crusade.  It only takes one or two terrorists to inflict enormous human casualties, as we have seen time and time again, and Lorigo is right to urge local officials to push back against the resettlement policy in the interests of protecting American citizens who could be placed in life-threatening danger if one or more of the refugees that come here are jihadists bent on killing Americans.

Now there is little evidence that any of the Syrian refugees who have been resettled in the United States have become a threat, but it only takes one, and many leaders across the country are urging the government to suspend or stop the resettlement program for now and legislation to that end is being readied by the new House Speaker, Republican Paul Ryan.  Some Democrats are also looking at a pause in the resettlement program in the wake of the horrible tragedy in Paris.






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