Refugeehad Has This Country on the Brink of Collapse
But what happens if we do take in tons of refugees? Probably nothing good. Take Sweden:
In Sweden, there initially was little since the country has historically taken in many refugees across various countries, and it has a very liberal refugee policy. Yet, it’s one where the resources of the state have been pushed to the brink, where new restrictive policies have been adopted to curb the cost of housing the latest influx of refugees, especially from Syria, and where the whole attitude towards refugees has devolved into a debate that’s fractured this society, along with the rest of the European continent.
James Taub wrote in Foreign Policy in February about Sweden’s dalliance with Syrian refugees that have led to “the death of the most generous nation on Earth.” He noted the country’s rich history in housing and sheltering those fleeing war-torn countries. In some cases, like Eritrea, they take those fleeing forced conscription. For the most part, the country was able to soak up these newcomers, viewing them, as they once did, as a net positive concerning long-term diversity and integration. That’s one of the beautiful things about Western society—it’s not rigid. Any person, from any race, religion, or ethnicity can adapt and eventually adopt the traditions and values of Western culture; its political make up allows for tolerance (i.e. freedom of the press, speech, religion, and the right to assembly). Yet, that’s no longer the consensus as Taub writes, and integration usually forms the crux of the debate.
The United States obviously has a more robust economy than Sweden. But we're in the midst of a debt crisis that's only going to become more dire should a Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders get elected. The addition of thousands of unskilled immigrants and the elevated terror risk that comes with them could be an absolute nightmare for our nation at this precarious point in history.
Sweden thought they could take on this massive feat, as their neighbors began to build walls along their borders. One could easily understand why the Swedes first thought the Syrian refugee experiment could be a success. They had accepted Muslim refugees before in the 1990s from the Balkans, where civil war was tearing the region apart over ethno-religious lines (Bosnians and Serbs). As Taub wrote, these were Muslims of a more moderate caliber, who adapted to the secular Swedish society. He noted that future generations of this group now serve as doctors and work in government, some are even ministers. That’s not going to happen with the Syrians. In the end, the government found that they had quickly run out of resources to handle the immediate needs of the refugees, and certainly could not afford taking care of them in the long term. Sweden extends its social safety net, health care, housing, and education to refugees with the same access as ordinary Swedish citizens.