I really don't know that I have anything to say about the above. It's self-explanatory.
When the Wagner-Rogers Bill was proposed in Congress, providing for the resettlement of 20,000 Jews, it didn’t even make it to a vote, being rejected by President Roosevelt and a majority of lawmakers, including Senator Robert Taft (R-OH), who argued that even Jewish children would be a threat to the United States. And that year, desperate Jews fleeing Europe on a number of ships, including the St. Louis, were turned away from our shores.
It's worth remembering this mood when thinking about the current moment, where the United States is once more in the throes of a debate over letting in refugees. Ever since Friday's terror attacks in Paris, the Republicans, led by their presidential candidates, have sounded the alarm over the threat of jihadist infiltration from Syria — even though it now appears every single one of the identified assailants was a European national.
The thing is self-evident. Refugees fleeing ISIS are, by definition, refugees fleeing ISIS. These are families so terrorized by the brutalities of ISIS, or Assad, or the myriad other groups jockeying for Syrian power that they can see no alternative but to abandon their home country entirely. All the things ISIS has done against western citizens or western journalists are minuscule compared to the barbarism that continues to be inflicted against Syrian Muslims themselves.
Historically, however, turning away refugees fleeing possible death in their home countries has repeatedly been declared the "American" thing to do—if those refugees are deemed to be from an undesirable ethnic group. We indeed turned away Jews fleeing Hitler. We interned Japanese Americans under the purely racial presumption that terrorists or saboteurs could easily be hiding among their number, thus necessitating putting the entire population in fenced and guarded concentration camps. It was only months, not years ago that unaccompanied children fleeing Central American gang and drug violence were considered a potential occupying force so dangerous that critics insisted the National Guard—if not the standing Army—must be dispatched to make sure they could not cross our borders, and towns in several border states erupted in fury after rumors flew that those children might be housed somewhere nearby. Warning against the dangers of refugee children in particular has a long, long history in America.
When Chris Christie demands that not even orphaned toddlers be allowed to resettle here, he is reading from a very old script.