Fox News anchor Shepard Smith delivered a commentary Monday afternoon in which he scolded the various state governors who decided to bar refugees from their states in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris.
Without specifically mentioning the governors, Smith said the U.S. has a responsibility to protect the values on which the nation was founded, warning that “political extremists” could lead the country to “self-destruction.”
“In the face of terror, will we panic, or be calm and deliberative in approach?” Smith said. “Confronted with those who want to change our way of life, will we abandon our freedoms and the rights granted to us by the Creator?”
In his commentary, Smith suggested that the U.S. must “welcome huddled masses yearning to breathe free,” referring to refugees attempting to escape their war-torn countries of origin. He also warned against taking “extreme measures to fundamentally alter who and what we are.”
At least 15 state governors on Monday — mostly Republicans — issued executive orders blocking refugees from Syria and elsewhere from entering their states until the federal government can provide an effective screening process for those entering the country.
Smith continued (emphasis added):
“Our shining city on a hill is vulnerable. We’ve always known that. If we change it to accommodate the savages, have they won? And what then would be left to protect? We profess to stand as an example for all the world. Our unique experiment in freedom, tolerance, openness, and equality is our gift to societies and peoples everywhere. Come, join us. Enjoy a chance at the American dream.
Today, we mourn, but we cannot allow ourselves to become like those who want to destroy us. We cannot resort to the tactics of the barbarians. We must fight for what we believe in and who we are, guard our freedoms faithfully for the generations to follow. And we must not let the rhetoric of potential and political extremists among us lead us to self-destruction. When there’s panic, we show resolve. When there’s calm for extremism, we resist. We are America. We must lead.”
Tensions have been high following the attacks. After President Barack Obama spoke on the U.S.’s counter-ISIS strategy at the G20 Summit on Monday morning, Fox anchor Bill Hemmer suggested that Obama did not take a clear enough stand.
“If you were waiting to hear a U.S. president say, ‘I feel your pain,’ or if you were waiting to hear a U.S. president say, ‘It’s them or us,’ that is not what you just heard,” Hemmer said.
Smith echoed the sentiments expressed by Obama, who said that refusing refugees “would be a betrayal of our values.”
Watch the video below, via Fox News.