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Mayor uses Japanese internment camps to defend his rejection of Syrian refugees

David Bowers, the mayor of Roanoke, Virginia, thinks the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II was a good idea and that there should be more of that kind of thing.

Bowers, like a lot of state and local government officials, is trying to prevent Syrian refugees from being resettled in his area. Unlike most state and local government officials, however, he justifies his actions by saying we should be at least as harsh toward Syrians because of ISIS as FDR was to Japanese Americans after Pearl Harbor:

I'm reminded that President Franklin D. Roosevelt felt compelled to sequester Japanese foreign nationals after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and it appears that the threat of harm to America from Isis (sic) now is just as real and serious as that from our enemies then.

Here is the full statement, in case you do not believe us.

mayor Syrian refugees internment camps

(Roanoke mayor's office via the Roanoke Times)

In case you needed clarification, the Japanese internment camps — which, contra Bowers, also interned native-born US citizens of Japanese descent — have universally been recognized, in hindsight, as a Very Bad Thing.

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