Immediately following the horrific terrorist attacks in Paris, refugees from Syria were thrown into the spotlight.
And, in many ways, unfairly so.
Speculation began swirling that those involved in the Nov. 13, 2015, attacks had crossed into France amongst the wave of Syrian refugees escaping conflict.
This line of thinking prompted harsh anti-refugee rhetoric across Western Europe. In the U.S., presidential hopefuls have said barring entry for refugees even children under the age of 5 is the only way to go. Dozens of U.S. governors are refusing to accept refugees into their states (although, it doesn’t look like they’ll be successful in doing so).
A Scottish newspaper, however, is taking a much different, and more empathetic approach.
And many people are applauding the outlet’s message.
The Nov. 17, 2015 edition of The National isn’t shying away from its take on refugees on the day the first Syrians are set to arrive in Scotland: You’re welcome here.
In an editorial on the subject, the newspaper called out political “bigots” in Scotland who are attempting to “poison minds against the Syrian refugees.”
“They will not succeed in doing so,” the outlet wrote.
“Their blatant and cynical attempt to capitalize on a tragedy will disgust the vast majority of Scots, who understand that refugees from Syria are fleeing the very same terrorism of which our French neighbors were targets last weekend.”
The tweet with The National’s front page has spread like wildfire, garnering more than 2,300 retweets in a matter of hours.
As President Obama reminded us, it’s vital we remember that refugees are those trying to escape the violence not perpetuate it.
During a nearly hour-long press conference at the G-20 summit in Turkey on Monday, Obama reiterated that many refugees are, in fact, the victims of terrorism not terrorist sympathizers.
“The people who are fleeing Syria are the most harmed by terrorism, the most vulnerable as a consequence of civil war and strife.”