When Mayor Invites Syrian Refugees with Open Arms, Citizens Let Him Know EXACTLY How They Feel About It

Participants hold flags and a banner during an anti-immigration rally organised by an initiative called "Stop Islamisation of Europe" and backed by the far-right "People's Party-Our Slovakia" on September 12, 2015 in Bratislava, Slovakia. AFP PHOTO / Samuel Kubani

From IJReview: As the debate rages over whether the United States should accept Syrian refugees – with dozens of governors making it clear that their states would not – one mayor has announced that his city will accept as many as 500.

While Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto has reaffirmed his decision repeatedly, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has also announced that his state will accept Syrian refugees, a stance Mayor Peduto agrees with:

“It’s not going to just go away. The idea that the United States or other countries would walk away from this world effort, I don’t think is possible to do at this point.”

WTAE reports that some Pittsburgh residents are making it clear that they are not on board with the plan.

Concerns have arisen that ISIS members are sneaking into regions accepting Syrian refugees by hiding among the crowds, prompting some strong reactions:


It seems these commenters aren’t a small part of the city either, but appear to be part of a majority that hold this opinion:


The backlash has reportedly been strong enough to cue an increased police presence at the mayor’s home, though police, and the mayor’s office has said that they “cannot comment on the specifics of the mayor’s security coverage.”

Peduto has noted that he does “realize people are fearful and afraid,” but adds that he “would never do anything to put this city in jeopardy.”

The mayor’s spokesman, Tim McNulty, could not be reached for comment Thursday.

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