MT. WOLF, Pa. (WHTM) – A group of protesters opposed to accepting Syrian refugees rallied once more Sunday afternoon.
They’ve demonstrated at the Capitol and at the governor’s mansion in recent weeks; this time, they took their message to Gov. Tom Wolf’s personal doorstep.
Under the watchful eye of police from at least two agencies, dozens voiced their disapproval to an apparently empty governor’s house in Mt. Wolf, York County.
Dan Gray, who spoke at the rally, came down from Schuylkill County to take part.
Wolf is one of the few governors across the country who has expressed his support for the continued acceptance of Syrian refugees. Gray wants him to change his mind.
“I want to show the people of Pennsylvania that we can stand up to the people who allegedly represent us,” he said.
Governors don’t have legal standing to halt the federal refugee resettlement program, but Gray says there are still options.
One possible solution, he said, is to sue Washington, D.C. That’s a tricky legal issue, but whether or not it’s possible, the protesters say something must be done.
“Without hardening our hearts,” Gray said, “we have to operate in a sensible manner that keeps us safe.”
“I’m sure people are scared,” said Ronald Hornidge. “They should be.”
Hornidge stood alone as the sole counter-protester Sunday. His family came to the U.S. as Irish refugees.
“I’m truly grateful that they were able to come here,” he said, “and I would like to extend that out to others that are safe people that want to come.”
Hornidge, too, would like to see stricter laws for vetting refugees, but he doesn’t want fear to overcome compassion.
Some of the demonstrators’ signs featured phrases like “No Islam,” but the group said they’re not against Muslims.
“I don’t have a problem with faith,” Gray said. “I have a problem with actions.”
Those actions — across the globe in recent weeks — give this group of Pennsylvanians reason to worry.