Magic Valley, Whatever Happened To ‘Love Thy Neighbor’? (OPINION)
We shared a story regarding 10,000 Syrian refugees being relocated to the United States, many in the Boise area. For the record, this was a report from the Associated Press. We were just the messengers. Unfortunately, many of the responses were predictable. They made my heart hurt a little bit and it made me wonder if the concept of loving your neighbor is no longer valid in our area.
But, my faith demands that I love people. It doesn't matter if they're different from me or not. For their sake, I hope they are different from me. I'm pretty messed up sometimes.
First, I want to state that I do not agree with many of the policies of our current government. So, please, do not take this as a ringing endorsement for the refugee resettlement campaign or anything else. I'm not a member of any political party, just a guy with an opinion and a couple of thoughts I would ask you to consider.
Let me play the part of Captain Obvious when I say that there are many in our area with very real and valid concerns about the refugees that have been relocated here. It's a complicated issue and I'm not trying to degrade anyone on either side.
What I would ask is that anger (and hopefully valid concerns) would be directed at those making these policies instead of the refugees themselves. The refugee families that I have come in contact in Twin Falls and the Magic Valley have not been threatening to my family. They're just people who, in some cases, don't seem to like the way this refugee issue is being handled either.
The thought of a refugee family that has come to our area that is legitimately attempting to start a new life reading some of the public comments on Facebook were nearly enough to make me sick.
Are there criminals among the refugees being brought here? I have no doubt. Do we have criminals among the native Idahoans that have lived here their entire lives? You bet.
Here's my point in a nutshell. I despise some of the policies of our government. But, my faith demands that I love people. It doesn't matter if they're different from me or not. For their sake, I hope they are different from me. I'm pretty messed up sometimes.
Go ahead and paint me as a sandal-wearing cream puff if you want. Would it be too much to ask for us to love our neighbors and show that the Magic Valley can take the high road when confronted by divisive issues like this?
But, what do I know? I'm just a guy, who isn't a member of any political party, with an opinion and a couple of thoughts for you to consider.