Global Refugees

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Global Refugees

Postby KeithE » Tue Dec 18, 2018 8:33 am

181 Nations Just Voted to Help Refugees. Only the Far-Right United States and Hungary Voted "No"

The United States was a near global outlier Monday at the United Nations General Assembly in rejecting a framework to bolster international cooperation on refugees.

Only Hungary—headed by far-right Prime Minister Viktor Orban, whose administration has been accused of carrying out "a full-frontal assault on migrants and refugees"—joined the U.S. in voting "no" on the Global Compact on Refugees (pdf). One hundred eighty-one nations voted to approve it, while three—the Dominican Republic, Eritrea, and Libya—abstained.


The UN Pact: https://www.unhcr.org/gcr/GCR_English.pdf

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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Dave Roberts » Tue Dec 18, 2018 10:17 am

So much for our specious claim to be a "Christian nation."
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Jon Estes » Tue Dec 18, 2018 9:49 pm

Dave Roberts wrote:So much for our specious claim to be a "Christian nation."


Are the ones who voted no to this the ones who claim we are a Christian nation? If not, your comment is moot?
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Haruo » Tue Dec 18, 2018 10:42 pm

Jon Estes wrote:
Dave Roberts wrote:So much for our specious claim to be a "Christian nation."


Are the ones who voted no to this the ones who claim we are a Christian nation? If not, your comment is moot?

Something along those lines occurred to me when I read this thread, too. I am not clear on Trump's position on the "Christian nation vs. secular state" position. Clearly a large portion of the "Evangelical Christians" who form a significant part of his "base" hold to the notion that this is a Christian nation (or at least was and, come MAGA, shall be again). But the electorate is not directly involved in voting on treaties and the like at a global level. That is the administration's job, and it seems to me that this administration has sent messages on the subject at least as disjointed and self-rebutting as it has on many other subjects. I know they celebrated Hanukkah at the White House this year, which is not normally an Evangelical Christian feast. Perhaps the position is that, in a secular way, this is a Judeo-Christian nation, not to say Abrahamic. Since I don't think any branch of government except the USPS celebrates Eid al-Fitr.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Jon Estes » Tue Dec 18, 2018 11:26 pm

Haruo wrote:
Jon Estes wrote:
Dave Roberts wrote:So much for our specious claim to be a "Christian nation."


Are the ones who voted no to this the ones who claim we are a Christian nation? If not, your comment is moot?

Something along those lines occurred to me when I read this thread, too. I am not clear on Trump's position on the "Christian nation vs. secular state" position. Clearly a large portion of the "Evangelical Christians" who form a significant part of his "base" hold to the notion that this is a Christian nation (or at least was and, come MAGA, shall be again). But the electorate is not directly involved in voting on treaties and the like at a global level. That is the administration's job, and it seems to me that this administration has sent messages on the subject at least as disjointed and self-rebutting as it has on many other subjects. I know they celebrated Hanukkah at the White House this year, which is not normally an Evangelical Christian feast. Perhaps the position is that, in a secular way, this is a Judeo-Christian nation, not to say Abrahamic. Since I don't think any branch of government except the USPS celebrates Eid al-Fitr.


To use the thinking like the original Comment. This is what should be expected from a "non-Christian" nation.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Dave Roberts » Wed Dec 19, 2018 6:47 am

I remember the rhetoric when I was growing up that said, "We put God in our pledge and on our money to show we are a Christian nation, as opposed to those godless Communists." That is still the logic of David Barton and his popular "historical fiction" that is read by so many in our evangelical wing. Our actions, not just our words, count.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby KeithE » Wed Dec 19, 2018 7:53 am

Whether or not we are (or were, ala Barton) an overtly Christian nation, many of our current leaders have lost any empathy for refugees. In fact immigrants/refugees are demonized and used as a scapegoat for economic problems (both individual and collective).

Don’t use the doctrine of the separation of church and state as a basis for being heartless.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Jon Estes » Wed Dec 19, 2018 11:46 am

Dave Roberts wrote:I remember the rhetoric when I was growing up that said, "We put God in our pledge and on our money to show we are a Christian nation, as opposed to those godless Communists." That is still the logic of David Barton and his popular "historical fiction" that is read by so many in our evangelical wing. Our actions, not just our words, count.



You are more than welcome to show me where DB is wrong in his history position.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Sandy » Wed Dec 19, 2018 12:09 pm

Jon Estes wrote:
Dave Roberts wrote:I remember the rhetoric when I was growing up that said, "We put God in our pledge and on our money to show we are a Christian nation, as opposed to those godless Communists." That is still the logic of David Barton and his popular "historical fiction" that is read by so many in our evangelical wing. Our actions, not just our words, count.



You are more than welcome to show me where DB is wrong in his history position.


https://www.theatlantic.com/national/ar ... ue/260994/

Long subject. The bigger challenge would be to find anyplace that DB is right in his history position. The fact that publishers at the core of conservative Evangelical Christianity in America won't touch his stuff anymore would be a good starting point. The conservative, evangelical sources on this subject alone would be a year's worth of reading. That's kind of beside the point, but responds to the question.

I don't believe there's anything that sets America apart from most of the rest of the world as does our identity as a refuge from oppression. Any attempt to "Make America Great Again" (you can leave off the "again" as far as I am concerned, it always was and continues to be great) that does not include expanding the capacity of this country to relieve the suffering of refugees will fail to accomplish it's end.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Haruo » Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:21 pm

I know that Roger Williams was in favor of a secular polity in which Muslims had an equal say with Jews and Christians. I don't recall if he wrote about the atheists. I'm also not familiar with Barton's position in any detail, and have never to my knowledge even started one of his books. Should I?
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Rvaughn » Wed Dec 19, 2018 11:04 pm

Jon Estes wrote:
Dave Roberts wrote:So much for our specious claim to be a "Christian nation."

Are the ones who voted no to this the ones who claim we are a Christian nation? If not, your comment is moot?
It is interesting to me that some of those who are first to say the U. S. of America is not a Christian nation are also some of the first to expect it to act like one.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Jon Estes » Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:24 am

Rvaughn wrote:
Jon Estes wrote:
Dave Roberts wrote:So much for our specious claim to be a "Christian nation."

Are the ones who voted no to this the ones who claim we are a Christian nation? If not, your comment is moot?
It is interesting to me that some of those who are first to say the U. S. of America is not a Christian nation are also some of the first to expect it to act like one.


You are correct. If we are a Christian nation and not acting like one - speak out. If we are not - we can't expect Christian behavior.

If this President is a believer, expect him to act like one... If he is not... don't because he can't. He would not have the Holy Spirit residing within Him to lead in such a way.

If one wants to argue that he should behave in a certain way with certain manners... Who gets to define what is proper behavior?

If one wants to make it different today than the previous generations... who gets to make the alteration? It won't be Christian (biblically) but more culturally. Who knows... maybe Trump is setting the next moral compass for the next generation. You don't have to like it - non-Christian morals keep changing. Just ask all of the temper tantrum-throwing offended person because some boy wants to be called a girl (one of to many examples to list). In my earlier days, I would have gotten a well deserved wallop and be told to straighten up. The American melting pot is no longer melting but everyone is being encouraged to keep their own color but don't offend another or try to be like another crayon in the bowl... cultural appropriation and all.

If there isn't a great awakening in the US, maybe Jeremiah Wright was correct.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby KeithE » Thu Dec 20, 2018 8:27 am

Rvaughn wrote:
Jon Estes wrote:
Dave Roberts wrote:So much for our specious claim to be a "Christian nation."

Are the ones who voted no to this the ones who claim we are a Christian nation? If not, your comment is moot?
It is interesting to me that some of those who are first to say the U. S. of America is not a Christian nation are also some of the first to expect it to act like one.


Ethical behavior is right for anyone, not just Christians. We all have consciences (the law written on our hearts - Romans 2:14-16, II Cor 3:1-6). This heartlessness should not be just glossed over.

Trump also falls far short on the US Rule of Law (if that be your standard) - 17 investigations at present.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Rvaughn » Thu Dec 20, 2018 8:59 am

Ethical behaviour is right for everyone, but the ethical behaviour of each one will be based on his or her standards of right and wrong. Acting in ways consistent with one's view of right and wrong will (or should), for example, be based on the understanding of the Old Testament for the Jew, the Bible (OT & NT) for the Christian, the Qur'an for the Muslim, the Bhagavad Gita for the Hindu, and so on. Since the U. S. of America is neither Jewish, Christian, Muslim, or Hindu, it seems to me that the ethics of the nation must be based on its laws and Constitution, and acting in ways consistent with that. So, imo, the ethical argument here is not whether the U.S. should act like Christians should act, or even according to what 181 other nations do.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby KeithE » Thu Dec 20, 2018 9:26 am

Rvaughn wrote:Ethical behaviour is right for everyone, but the ethical behaviour of each one will be based on his or her standards of right and wrong. Acting in ways consistent with one's view of right and wrong will (or should), for example, be based on the understanding of the Old Testament for the Jew, the Bible (OT & NT) for the Christian, the Qur'an for the Muslim, the Bhagavad Gita for the Hindu, and so on. Since the U. S. of America is neither Jewish, Christian, Muslim, or Hindu, it seems to me that the ethics of the nation must be based on its laws and Constitution, and acting in ways consistent with that. So, imo, the ethical argument here is not whether the U.S. should act like Christians should act, or even according to what 181 other nations do.


I believe in a far more universal ethic written on our hearts.

And if your standard is the written commands in the OT and NT as you say - remember tens of (if not over a hundred) commands telling us to welcome the stranger in your lands.

Appeal to universal laws on our hearts when dealing with non-christians (as in setting national policies/actions) and appeal to both the universal law and the specific OT and NT laws when speaking to Christians (especially legalistic ones). But all means recommend/encourage “welcoming the stranger” especially those fleeing oppression as 181 countries have done.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Rvaughn » Thu Dec 20, 2018 9:52 am

People have hearts. Nations have laws. The laws of 181 nations (mentioned in your original post) are not the laws of the U. S. of America. Where we are not following our own laws, we should hope to correct that. Where our laws are not good, we should try to change that.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby KeithE » Thu Dec 20, 2018 10:31 am

Rvaughn wrote:People have hearts. Nations have laws. The laws of 181 nations (mentioned in your original post) are not the laws of the U. S. of America. Where we are not following our own laws, we should hope to correct that. Where our laws are not good, we should try to change that.


The US is party to 1967 Protocol to the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. We should be following our international commitments.

This UN resolution is an update to those conventions. I am not sure on what basis the US has for not cooperating with this update (though it sounds like ugly xenophobia / immigration politics to me).

I am registering my belief that refugees need care and the US should unambiguously join the rest of the world in that care. I do this as a person and as a Christ-Follower and as a citizen of the USA.

Why? My heart says so and I recognize that:
From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.
(Luke 12:48).

You seem to be supporting anti-refugee treatment claiming falsely that it is permitted by US Law. What law?

Maybe I am wrong and you will support me in calling for a welcoming front to refugees at our door.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Rvaughn » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:04 am

I have said nothing against refugees. You are apparently reading what you think into my statement about "Christian nation".
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Sandy » Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:28 pm

Rvaughn wrote:Ethical behaviour is right for everyone, but the ethical behaviour of each one will be based on his or her standards of right and wrong. Acting in ways consistent with one's view of right and wrong will (or should), for example, be based on the understanding of the Old Testament for the Jew, the Bible (OT & NT) for the Christian, the Qur'an for the Muslim, the Bhagavad Gita for the Hindu, and so on. Since the U. S. of America is neither Jewish, Christian, Muslim, or Hindu, it seems to me that the ethics of the nation must be based on its laws and Constitution, and acting in ways consistent with that. So, imo, the ethical argument here is not whether the U.S. should act like Christians should act, or even according to what 181 other nations do.


Most of those who are associated with the far right, mainly the religious right, claim that America was founded as a Christian nation and therefore its idealism all stems from the fact that the founders were all born-again Christians who built the foundation of the country on a conservative interpretation of the scripture. Then they support politicians and political positions that are counter to a Biblical perspective with the exception of being pro-life and anti-same gender marriage. If they see things that way, their actions on a whole host of issues are hypocritical and inconsistent with their stated position. I get it. Most people use their Christian faith and a few select sentences from the Bible to justify what they want but have never considered the implications of what it means to have a truly "Biblical" worldview. So the anti-immigrant, anti-refugee policies of the current administration run counter to Christian principles and its critics are pointing out the inconsistency. That's not all that hard to understand.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Rvaughn » Thu Dec 20, 2018 3:04 pm

Sandy wrote:That's not all that hard to understand.
Not hard at all. Neither should it be too hard to understand the inconsistency of expecting a nation that is not a Christian nation to operate like one, when it fits our "worldview" to so assert.

On the other hand, the OP actually pointed out that the vote of the US under discussion ran counter to 181 nations. I did not notice that it discussed running counter to Christian principles.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Haruo » Thu Dec 20, 2018 3:49 pm

KeithE wrote: But (sic) all means recommend/encourage “welcoming the stranger” especially those fleeing oppression as 181 countries have done.

I don't have any particular reason to think that those 181 countries actually all behave the way a thumbnail sketch of the accord says they should. Such agreements are more or less unenforceable.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Rvaughn » Thu Dec 20, 2018 5:00 pm

Interesting thought, Leland. It would be fascinating to see a list of the 181 nations who voted for it, and compare to nations from which people are fleeing for refuge!
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Sandy » Thu Dec 20, 2018 6:28 pm

Rvaughn wrote:Not hard at all. Neither should it be too hard to understand the inconsistency of expecting a nation that is not a Christian nation to operate like one, when it fits our "worldview" to so assert.


That's not my expectation. I don't expect the US to act like a "Christian nation." But I do expect it to act in accordance with its founding principles, and this attitude doesn't reflect that.

Jon Estes wrote:The American melting pot is no longer melting but everyone is being encouraged to keep their own color but don't offend another or try to be like another crayon in the bowl... cultural appropriation and all.


I disagree. I think what many people described as a "melting pot" was the expected assimilation of immigrants into the white, European, Anglocentric culture that was predominant in America. The expectation was that people who moved here would start acting like the white people who were here, would become Protestants like them, and show an interest in their social and cultural institutions, and the biggest one, become participants in the economy in the same way. So the white Europeans, particularly those of English, Scotch, and Irish ancestry, and to a lesser extent, those of Scandinavian, Dutch, Belgian, and French Ancestry, were the ones who set the cultural tone and decided what the pot would look like and everyone else was expected to "melt in" according to that standard. That's why there was such resistance to immigration coming from Italy, Greece and Spain, because they were Catholic and that would affect the religious perspective of the country, a prejudice that was still having an effect when JFK ran for President. Eastern European Jews, mostly from the Hassidic dynasties in Poland and Ukraine, weren't welcome either, because their religious practices made it hard for them to assimilate.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Jon Estes » Fri Dec 21, 2018 2:46 am

KeithE wrote:Ethical behavior is right for anyone, not just Christians. We all have consciences (the law written on our hearts - Romans 2:14-16, II Cor 3:1-6). This heartlessness should not be just glossed over.

Trump also falls far short on the US Rule of Law (if that be your standard) - 17 investigations at present.


Who gets to set the ethics? Can I?

Why would an atheist care about God's law? They shouldn't.

Why should a nonChristian nation concern itself with having a God set conscience to determine right from wrong? It makes no sense to. Our prisons are filled with men of no show of godly conscience.

I think it is sad when a non-Christian nation says we ought to act Christian as a nation.

Lost, well-meaning, people still do not have what is needed to make the right choices - whether they sit in a White House or work in a Capital building. HAving the law written upon our hearts is not the same thing as having the Holy Spirit alive in us.
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Re: Global Refugees

Postby Jon Estes » Fri Dec 21, 2018 2:55 am

Sandy wrote:
Jon Estes wrote:The American melting pot is no longer melting but everyone is being encouraged to keep their own color but don't offend another or try to be like another crayon in the bowl... cultural appropriation and all.


I disagree. I think what many people described as a "melting pot" was the expected assimilation of immigrants into the white, European, Anglocentric culture that was predominant in America. The expectation was that people who moved here would start acting like the white people who were here, would become Protestants like them, and show an interest in their social and cultural institutions, and the biggest one, become participants in the economy in the same way. So the white Europeans, particularly those of English, Scotch, and Irish ancestry, and to a lesser extent, those of Scandinavian, Dutch, Belgian, and French Ancestry, were the ones who set the cultural tone and decided what the pot would look like and everyone else was expected to "melt in" according to that standard. That's why there was such resistance to immigration coming from Italy, Greece and Spain, because they were Catholic and that would affect the religious perspective of the country, a prejudice that was still having an effect when JFK ran for President. Eastern European Jews, mostly from the Hassidic dynasties in Poland and Ukraine, weren't welcome either, because their religious practices made it hard for them to assimilate.


It may have been that too many but the reality for others was for America to unite around a cause for the nation's Judeo Christian Principles and not be hyphenated citizens. If you want people from Country X to immigrate here to work to see America become like country X, then you ought to encourage them to go back to country X... the place where they can have what they are trying to make America become.

Example - A few years ago some high schoolers got sent home for wearing USA flag shirts to school on Cinco De Mayo day because the Hispanic students (and other snowflakes) were offended that they could not celebrate their countries national holiday without being reminded they were in the USA --- and the courts agreed.

https://edition.cnn.com/2014/02/27/justice/california-school-american-flag-shirts/index.html

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