Guess what! States are are barring Syrian refugees from coming to them despite the fact that legitimate presidential candidates don’t even know what the United States looks like. This is because after the #ParisAttacks racists have seen an opportune moment to faux-legitimize their racism and drum up some anti-muslim rhetoric despite the fact that none of the Paris attackers were Syrian. What happened in Paris is horrific, as were recent events in Beirut and Ankara. However, barring Syrian refugees isn’t what will bring an end to ISIS and terrorism, in fact, it plays directly into what ISIS wants: a narrative in which their “caliphate” is the only home for Muslims. If you want solutions to defeating ISIS style terrorism, there aren’t any immediate ones, and long term ones will take a dramatic policy shift by Western leaders. Politicians calling for a ban on Syrian refugees fail to acknowledge that we actually have a tremendously and exhaustively effective vetting system for refugees, to the point that plenty of people who legitimately need to be resettled and could be valuable members of our multicultural nation can’t even get here.
But here we are, with elected officials legitimately praising the Japanese internment camps and saying we should do this again. The level of cognitive dissonance going on today is astounding, or maybe this is just a massive conspiracy to tear down the Statue of Liberty, that terrorist loving harlet. Jemelle Bouie over at Slate says it best: as Americans we are a nation of immigrants that hates immigrants. There will always be the other, and the other will always be feared and made to seem like the enemy.
This is all complicated. I could delve into how it is Europe’s bigotry and colonial legacy that makes its own cities the hotbed of radical terror, but I just want a simpler, more innuendo filled way to explain to the public that those from the Levant, particularly Syria, are, have been, and will be a pivotal and notable part of American society.
I give you: The Syrian American Power Rankings:
- Steve Jobs:
When I told friends about this half-assed list, they immediately said “Oh! Oh! Steve Jobs has got to be number 1!”. False. Steve Jobs is most surely a proud and noteable Syrian American, but I don’t really see what all the hubub is about him. People treat him like a demi-god for making a computer and cell phone. iMac’s used to be neon colored pieces of shit. The iPhone is a scam that makes you pay six hundred dollars every two years then slowly withers away in your palm more and more after every “operating system update”. I have a macbook and an iphone, and I use them simply because they are better than a PC. That isn’t love, that’s settling. Thank you Steve Jobs for helping me realize my romantic future in the form of electronic possession-hood. But people like Steve, so he gets #10. I hope you are happy America. Please acknowledge that he is Syrian.
I know very very little about Kelly Slater besides that he surfs and used to date Gisele. But surfing is iconically American. Hell, there’s a whole song called “Surfin USA” about cruising for chicks and hanging out on the beach. Those are up there in the pantheon of “Most American Things” along with war Mongering and our own hate of immigrants. Let that settle in your mind palace.
Tommy Bolin is an American of Syrian ancestry who played guitar in Deep Purple. If you can’t recognize the contribution to Americana that is “Smoke On The Water” then you are basically an ISIS sleeper cell. Fuck off. Love you Tommy.
Abe Doumar came to America from Damascus, and found himself at the St. Louis World’s Fair. One day at the fair he saw us savage Americans putting ice cream on pieces of paper. Even worse, the ice cream stand closed down when they ran out of said paper plates. Abe was a clever man, and went over to a nearby waffle stand, rolled the waffle into a cone, and told the asshat ice cream vendor to put the ice cream in the cone. He even brought peace between the two vendors, who sold the cone/cream combo for the rest of the fair. Well done Abe. So remember: if you hate Syrians, you hate ice cream. If you hate ice cream, you hate America.
- Teri Hatcher:
Timeless babe, and a woman who I imagine many a secretly-racist-unhappily-married-middle-american-man during the mid 2000’s fantasized about. She also played Lois Lane. So if you hate Syrians, then you hate the woman that SuperMan loved. If you hate the woman SuperMan loved… you see where I’m going with this.
If you speak Arabic then you’ll notice that the legendary director’s last name sounds a lot like the Arabic word for “King”. It’s not a coincidence. Someone way back in his family was Syrian. Besides their deep commitment to cinematography, there’s almost no similarities between Mr. Malick and ISIS. Without Syrian immigrants we wouldn’t have “The Tree of Life” or “A Thin Red Line”.
- Paula Abdul:
True Legend. Full stop. So renowned as a pop singer that her record label created a fictitious cigarette smoking cartoon cat to rap and sing along with her. The fact that the cat was never heard from again only adds to the strength of her career and legend. Paula, a Syrian Jew whose dad was born in Aleppo and moved to Brazil, is a true sign of why allowing Syrians in America isn’t just a good idea, but a necessity.
(as an aside, let’s think about the fact that there was a hit pop song in America about beastiality).
- Jerry Seinfeld:
Another Syrian Jew! I don’t really need to talk about Jerry Seinfeld. I’m just pointing out that he’s got some Syrian in him and if you re-watch seinfeld it becomes wildly apparent how horrible his stand up routine is. Those are two unrelated but true facts. I love seinfeld though. “What’s the deal with refugees!”.
- Shannon Elizabeth:
Born to a Syrian father, Shannon Elizabeth is responsible for an entire generation of American boys libidos via her role as “Nadia” in American Pie. Only god knows how many first erections and sessions of self love she was responsible for. A true icon. A great Syrian American.
Tiffany Darwish was one of the most iconic pop stars of the 80’s. Her song “I Think We’re Alone Now”, is literally about waiting for your parents to leave so you can fool around with your high school lover, which is the singular most American of institutions, and one countless ISIS members surely wish they could experience. The video for said ode to necking was filmed at a mall in Ogden, Utah, which is to Raqqa (ISIS capital) as Rand Paul is to Kruschev (although Ogden might have just as few bars as East Syria). Singing this song at karaoke is the equivalent of getting a tattoo of a bald eagle holding an american flag machine gunning a communist to death with a woman on a motorcycle in the background running over Saddam Hussein while blasting Deep Purple. Tiffany is the ultimate Syrian American. Tiffany is the ultimate American.
Syrians love making out, ice cream, art house cinema, and light teen movie nudity just as much as any other Americans. These are the true cornerstones of our society, and thus more Syrians will only mean a more formidable and strong America.