It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.
Archives For Living
Observations, lessons, and miscellany on living life.
Yesterday I attended the Calgary town hall on the Syrian refugees process. Some thoughts:
- Mayor Naheed Nenshi is an amazing speaker. I knew that before but on this topic, as the son of refugee parents himself, he is quite passionate and eloquent.
- At least locally, the resettlement effort is more organized and prepared than I would have thought considering the rush. Impressed. (Calgary really is a leader in so much of this stuff.)
- Nobody will be cutting corners on security and health checks.
- The semi-widespread notion that refugees are terrorists is nonsense. The Paris attacks were by French and Belgian nationals. To catch a 7-12 hour flight would be so much easier than the months-long gauntlet of checks, screens, transfers, and terrible travels those fleeing violence are going through. As Nenshi noted, terrorists are unfortunately smarter than that.
- Winter. These Syrians are arriving in the middle of a Canadian winter. Who would choose that voluntarily? People looking for peace and hope.
- The “how can we help” vibe in the room was inspiring. A smile at the airport and warm welcomes into the communities in which these families arrive will be more powerful than anything the government can do.
- The tight timeframe is actually a good thing, I think. Things happen in bursts. Canada shouldn’t be shy with ambition. And as far as moonshots go, this one is actually not that big.
Last weekend I attended the World Domination Summit (The what, Steve? Come again.) and I’m still reeling from the experience.
WDS was started five years ago by Chris Guillebeau, the author of The $100 Startup and The Happiness of Pursuit, and blogger at The Art of Non-Conformity, where he’s chronicled his quest to visit every sovereign country on Earth (which he’s now achieved). It’s a gathering of his community in celebration of the core values of community, adventure, and service, held annually in the amazing and beautiful city of Portland, Oregon.