Lowering the refugee count is the responsible thing to do for Americans.
Excerpt: With just six days left, it’s highly unlikely that the U.S. will reach its refugee resettlement cap of 45,000 for fiscal year 2018. As of Aug. 31, only 19,899 refugees had been admitted to the U.S.
That’s a dramatic reduction from years past, and next year’s cap has been set even lower.
For more than three decades, the U.S. has taken in more refugees than the rest of the world combined. By the State Department’s estimate, more than 3 million have settled in the country since 1975, as part of a state-sponsored program.
But the Trump administration’s announcement last Monday that it plans to limit the number of refugees admitted to the U.S. next year to just 30,000, down from an already a dramatic reduction, raises questions about America’s role in global refugee resettlement and what the change means for those fleeing violence and poverty around the world.
Bottom Line: The idea that the only compassionate thing to do for refugees is to bring them into the US has long been a bunch of nonsense. As I’ve pointed out for years, when is it that we’re going to be compassionate for Americans? Here’s an excerpt from my entry from June 7th of 2017: When is it that we're going to be compassionate to Americans?! How about we start taking care of Americans before trying to permanently care for the rest of the world?
- We (taxpayers) pay to bring refugees into the United States
- According to the Center for Immigration Studies, the typical immigrant relies on government assistance for five years.
- The average five-year cost per refugee is $64,370.
- The cost to relocate a refugee into a "safe-zone" in the middle-east: $1,057.
- 91% of refugees brought into the US end up on food stamps
- 68% of refugees brought into the US also end up receiving ongoing welfare also know as cash considerations. Based on that information alone there is a pretty meaningful argument for "safe-zone" relocation but that isn't all.
At best they immediately end up with government assistance, placing further strain on welfare and related assistance programs and at best are successfully employed within a short period of time. Part of the issue with regard to costs and government reliance. Aside from cultural, and often language barriers, education is a huge issue. The average adult refugee is educated, in their own culture, at the equivalent of about a 10th-grade level. How's the employment market for a 10th-grade education these days? What types of jobs are refugees most commonly occupying? Entry level work right?
Where is the unemployment rate highest? It's with the youngest workers attempting to access the job market. So now we have refugees competing for employment with young Americans trying to break into the job market and that's the best-case outcome.
So yes, this gets back to a country that's $20 trillion in debt, paying more than $64,000 per person to bring in people that then compete for resources with those that are struggling most in our society. Moreover, that doesn't even account for any of the potential risk factors that might result from not being able to properly vet many of these refugees. It shouldn't be controversial to suggest that we should halt refugee programs until we're able to pay our own debt obligations and rehabilitate the inner cities in places like Detroit and Chicago. We can be compassionate and help refugees to safe locations near their points of origin. It doesn't and shouldn't mandate permanent relocation to the US.
Thankfully we’ve made progress with record low minority unemployment and the best economy in a generation. Does anyone think that part of the reason for progress has been the lessening of competition for jobs and resources from outside sources? That’s never discussed but it stands to reason that there are more opportunities for Americans when there’s less outside competition from outside sources that we’re paying to relocate into the US to compete with Americans for opportunities.
Photo By: Amer Ghazzal / Barcroft Media / Barcroft Media via Getty Images