“Not in My State” illegals vs Iowa Gov. Ray’s Vietnames Refugees

At least 57,000 illegal immigrant children unlawfully crossed the border since October 2013. An estimated 150,000 more will try it next year. Nearly 75% of illegal immigrant children are from Central America.  The federal government dumped illegal immigrants in Nebraska, without prior consent. Gov. Terry Branstad tells federal officials Iowa won’t be hosting any illegal immigrant children.

“The first thing we need to do is secure the border. I do have empathy for these kids,” Branstad said. “But I also don’t want to send the signal that (you) send your kids to America illegally. That’s not the right message.”  http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2014/07/14/Iowa-Gov-to-Feds-Don-t-Dump-Illegals-in-My-State

The times, they are a changin’!

Due to the Vietnam War and other conflicts in Southeast Asia, more than 3 million Vietnamese, Lao, and Cambodians were forced out, starved out, and persecuted over a 20-year period.  See: Robert D. Ray: An Iowa Governor, a Humanitarian Leader http://www.iptv.org/iowapathways/mypath.cfm?ounid=ob_000348

… in July 1975 President Ford wrote every governor urging state governments to do all they could to help resettle the Southeast Asians: “Many individuals and voluntary agencies are participating in the resettlement program … but we should not expect that they alone will accomplish this great humanitarian task as quickly as we would all wish.”

I didn’t think we could just sit here idly and say, ‘Let those people die’. We wouldn’t want the rest of the world to say that about us if we were in the same situation…Do unto others as you’d have them do unto you.  –Governor Robert D. Ray

As conditions worsened in Southeast Asia, people continued to flee that area of the world. Governor Ray saw the 1979 TV documentary “CBS Reports with Ed Bradley: The Boat People” and said,

“These frail little boats with people trying to save their lives and get away were breaking apart and people were dying and you could see them right there on the screen. And once again, I thought, ‘We’ve got to do something to help that situation…’ ”
But this time it was different. There was no current federal action to help these refugees. There was no presidential request for states to help. This time Ray wrote the president asking for help.

When people on the other side of the world needed help, Governor Ray was a humanitarian leader. When it would have been easy for a person to turn away from the troubles of the refugees, Governor Ray led Iowa in helping them.

In 1975 the process for bringing refugees to the United States was an irregular process. In 1980 the United States rewrote its refugee law. There is now a permanent, standardized process for bringing in refugees from around the world.

Iowa continues to resettle refugees. The Iowa Bureau of Refugee Services is the only entity run by a state government that is certified as a resettlement agency by the U.S. State Department. And it all started with Bob Ray.
I think what it shows is that everyone can do something and make a difference in this world. We might not be able to do it all but we can do something, and isn’t there great satisfaction in that? The happiest people I know are people who are doing things for other people. Think about at Christmas time; what makes you happiest? Is it what someone gives you or what you give to make somebody pleased, right?
–Governor Robert Ray
© Iowa Public Television

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About carolkean

novelist, reviewer, editor, book critic for Liberty Island and Perihelion Science Fiction; native prairie/guerilla gardener; champion of liberty, indie authors & underdogs; one of the top two reviewers in Editors &Preditors Poll 2015; Amazon Vine, NetGalley Top Reviewer
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