At this moment that I write there are about 200,000,000 people on this planet who reside in a country that was not their native land. In other words, there are hundreds of millions who fall into the category of being An IMMIGRANT. My parents fled eastern Europe after the end of World War I seeking a place of safety and refuge from war or poverty as well as the vicious anti-Semitism that prevailed in their native lands. As I write, there are at least two million people whose native land is in Syria, but have fled because of war or religious hatred or not particularly enjoying life in Assad Syria. The majority who have fled are Muslims, but there begins the problem–which type of Muslim? Shiite or Sunni or whoever? The overwhelming majority are now in a Muslim nation. Alas, that is where the problem begins. Muslim nations in the Middle East never cease complaining about the evils of Israel, but when it comes to welcoming their fellow Muslims, the end result is anger, discrimination and refusal to offer assistance. No Middle Eastern nation has allowed refugees from Israel-Palestine– to become citizens. So, why should Turks behave any different?
There are over a million Syrians in Turkey whose government has responded to the crisis with care and concern. But, to the average citizen, an immigrant is “not one of us.” Over a thousand people in the province of Kaharmanmares rioted against local Syrian refugees and chanted words of hate and violence. I live in America, the land which is 100% made up of immigrants. Which nation of the world surpasses us in expressions of hate toward immigrants? Turkish demonstrators said immigrants were –criminals– words that flow from Tea Party followers. To be an immigrant is not to be a person who will get a welcome wagon greeting.