When refugees were welcomed

 Duy Linh Tu, a professor and director of digital media at the Columbia School of Journalism, remembers arriving in the U.S. with his family and nothing else:

I came to the US with my family as refugees after the Viet Nam War. When we arrived, we had nothing except for the kindness of strangers. Members of a Lutheran church in Avon, CT took in the five of us while others from the congregation helped my dad find a job, my mother night classes so she could get her nursing degree, and our family its own apartment.

Now, to read this nonsense that certain politicians don’t want to take in Syrian refugees is both infuriating and heartbreaking. When we lost our home in Saigon, and as the Viet Cong were rolling over Viet Nam, there was no other place my parents could imagine coming to. America. Land of the free. Home of the brave. Huddled masses and all that.

How far have we fallen? The story of America is the story of immigrants. When did we become a country that refuses to protect the most vulnerable? When did we become a place that closes our doors to those who yearn to breathe free?

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