On a recent visit to Syracuse, I visited the North Side.
I tweeted some photos reflecting what I saw and heard from citizens, in no particular order. Reporter Mark Weiner then wrote a story that opened with a lie, magnified by the headline writer, that I “linked rising crime with” the mosque that now occupies the former Holy Trinity Church.
The lie is contradicted later in the story, as Mr. Weiner records that he asked if I asserted “a direct link between the rising Muslim refugee population and crime.” I said I didn’t know, but “probably not.”
The misrepresentation is unfortunate, as is the political correctness that makes it difficult to honestly discuss the decline of the neighborhood in recent decades: drugs, prostitution, money laundering and boarded-up buildings.
Residents expressed sadness over the closing of Holy Trinity Church, once a thriving center of gravity for a law-abiding immigrant community. Decades of Democrat establishment policies have caused a spiraling cycle of joblessness and decay. To be clear, neither the residents I talked with nor I blamed the failures of government policy on the mosque.
Syracuse, as Mr. Weiner reported last September, has the highest concentration of black and Hispanic poverty in America, which has “spread unabated from Syracuse’s core to the city’s Near South, Near Southwest, and North Side.” Now, Onondaga County is a major Obama refugee resettlement destination: the highest per-capita rate in the state and the third-highest in the country.
Some observations about one North Side apartment complex:
“There’s no heat or water in the dead of winter. Urine and feces dirty the hallways. Children go to school scarred by bedbug bites. Drug dealers take refuge inside busted doors.
“This is what America looks like for dozens of refugees, who fled war and persecution to find a North Side apartment complex that is no refuge.
“And U.S. taxpayers are footing the bill, paying thousands of dollars in rents each month to owners who haven’t consistently paid water bills, maintained the property or provided adequate security.”
These reports are from an excellent piece of investigative journalism in this newspaper.
It’s easy for Mayor Stephanie Miner to spout happy talk that “We welcome everyone,” but that North Side apartment complex is a pretty poor “welcome.” And it ignores the jobless rate among our own citizens and the fact that refugee flows mask terrorists in Europe.
Recording facts is neither anti-Muslim nor anti-immigrant. We need to stop the political correctness to recover the North Side as a safe, beautiful, thriving neighborhood.
Companies that provided good jobs moved away, like General Electric to Massachusetts and Carrier to Mexico. What can we do to help the community now? What is best for all human beings, whose God-given rights to life, liberty, and property America was founded to protect?
I believe the answers involve policy changes that:
- end high taxation and regulation that are crushing small businesses and the middle class.
- Stop illegal immigration and re-examine whether we can even sustain 1 million legal immigrants per year.
- change trade policies that hurt American manufacturing and jobs.
- fire establishment politicians like Chuck Schumer who collect millions from hedge funds, immigration law firms and other crony capitalists.
- allow local communities to regain control of their schools.
What if in Upstate cities – Syracuse, Rochester and Buffalo (the other two New York cities on a top 10 list of concentrated minority poverty) — we dramatically reduce federal taxes for any business willing to locate within their boundaries and hire legal city residents? What if we provided all families with vouchers so their children can attend the school of their choice? What if we demanded that our wealthy Muslim allies accept Muslim refugees?
And what if we stopped crony capitalism? The investigative piece on the North Side apartment complex identified a “well-connected Syracuse man, John St. Denis,” as its property manager. So the man running the property in which the refugees suffer is “recognized for his philanthropy” in giving to Catholic Charities, which receives millions in taxpayer dollars to house and settle refugees in St. Denis’ disgusting complex.
The Obama-Clinton-Schumer policy is admitting tens of thousands of Muslim refugees when:
- America faces a $20 trillion debt, over a decade of record-low economic growth, record-low labor participation, and increasing poverty.
- Radical Islamists terrorize the world, and refugee flows have been pinpointed as a source of jihadis who have wreaked death across Europe. Our own government admits we cannot screen them.
- A genocide against Christians is under way. No group faces greater persecution, yet can be screened to pose us no risk. The situation for Middle East Christians is like that of Jews in Nazi Germany in 1938. Yet we refuse priority for these Christians, who are being burned, crucified, beheaded, dissolved alive in acid, and whose young daughters are being taken as sex slaves and whose babies’ skulls are being smashed on the floor.
There are clearly problems on the North Side. Neither Stephanie Miner, nor Andrew Cuomo, nor Chuck Schumer has solved them. It’s easy to say “we welcome refugees,” especially when it fuels your special interests. It’s easy to call others racist, ignorant and xenophobic. None of that is making life any better for the human beings suffering in Syracuse or in other corners of our common planet.
View Full Article as seen on Syracuse.com.