The news all last week was about the Paris and Mali attacks and the Syrian refuge situation. I continue to receive messages and phone calls asking us to block refugees from Missouri. There has been so much call for this statewide that Senate Speaker Ron Richard and House Speaker Todd Richardson have called for a special hearing to look into the problem.

The news all last week was about the Paris and Mali attacks and the Syrian refuge situation. I continue to receive messages and phone calls asking us to block refugees from Missouri. There has been so much call for this statewide that Senate Speaker Ron Richard and House Speaker Todd Richardson have called for a special hearing to look into the problem.
There are a lot of questions surrounding the process of admitting people into our country. We all have seen the heartbreaking pictures of women and little children standing in lines waiting to leave Syria. By the same token, there are numerous pictures of hundreds of young men climbing over barricades and running past guards.
Without more information, we are expected to form our opinions based on the news report de jour. I agree that there is little or no information available on individual refugees. Any database or paperwork on these people has been lost long ago.
Besides, whom are we going to ask to supply us with that information? Most of them have no valid form of ID. Any process of determining if they pose a danger to us is relegated to an interview.
Some of the richest nations on earth are within a few hundred miles of Syria, yet they refuse to consider letting them relocate in their country.
We absolutely cannot be assured that a process of interviews will weed out men and women who are bent on destroying us. If we really want to help them to escape the horrors that confront them in Syria, we should endeavor to find a place in their part of the world to relocate them and supply them with financial help and protection.
A majority of states have refused to accept the refugees, but there are questions of whether we could be forced by the federal government to take them anyway.
This isn’t going to go away anytime soon. Unless the president and Congress can come up with a working plan, there is going to be finger pointing and politicizing going on for months.
Golden Living Center in Anderson had its Thanksgiving Dinner on Thursday. I was happy to join in for a great meal in a festive setting. The center goes all out to provide a fun time for residents and their families.
I was seated next to a gentleman whose wife was a resident there for several years. She passed on a couple of years ago, but he volunteers his time three days a week to visit with residents.
He was telling me that many of the folks there don’t have visitors. They don’t have any family left or there is no one who cares enough to take the time to visit.
For many, the high point of their month is when they receive a visit from Anderson second-graders. That is a great idea. If you are retired and have free time on your hands, drop by a nursing home close to you and spend some quality time with people who will appreciate having you visit.
The center’s Susan Wood was awarded the Missouri Administrator of the Year. She’s really shy about bragging about it. If you see her, congratulate her for a great job.
We held a town hall meeting Thursday in Seneca. The city has some great ideas for growth, and I shared some ideas for funding infrastructure improvements.
On Sunday afternoon, we went to a surprise retirement party for Junior Landers of Pineville. Landers has owned and operated the same business in Pineville for 61 years.
He started working for his dad in a filling station and garage when he was 16 and moved it to the present location on old U.S. 71 shortly after. He has been in the filling station and tire business ever since.
There were at least a dozen men in the group who had worked for Landers when they were in high school. One of them, Gary Sherman, bought the place and is converting it to a barbecue restaurant. He plans to give Landers a key to the place so he and his buddies can drink coffee in the mornings. More than 100 people attended the party, and a lot of stories were told.

Bill Lant represents the people of Southwest Missouri in the Missouri House of Representatives.