As countries shut down their borders and order lockdowns in our homes, we are all absorbing the message that survival depends on distance. But survival also depends on kindness, compassion and taking care of each other. There are ways to keep safe without abandoning our international obligations or our humanity.
Our choices may not have been as desperate or tinged with the fear of life or death, but at certain moments in our lives, we’ve all felt the maddening, aching need to protect those we love.
Last week, Trump proposed a reduction in the number of refugee admissions to 18,000 persons for 2020, the lowest number in the 40-year history of the refugee program. Simultaneously, he issued an executive order requiring states and localities to consent to the placement of refugees in their communities.
At a time when the United Nations has identified more than 25 million refugees worldwide—people who cannot return to their home countries for fear of persecution or other dangers—the Trump administration is contemplating setting a zero refugee admissions target for fiscal year 2020.