I who may well be...

Musings from the perspective of a human being who may well be not locatable completely within the usual categories of male or female or gay or straight or transsexual or intersexed or exploiter or exploited or supplier or consumer or performer or spectator.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Why are we so mean to refugees?

Just what the hell do we get out of turning away desperate refugees? What do we get from locking them up on sinking islands or sending them back to countries they have already had to flee in terror of their lives? Just what do we get out of the dozens of sick people suffering indefinite immigration detention in our very own concentration camps?

There must be a lot of votes in it, as the opposition is hardly opposed to the proposed forceful and possibly fatal return of the Sri Lanka asylum seekers.

What do we votes get out of this then, when Australia easily (and necessarily) absorbs tens of thousands of immigrants every year? Why do we persecute the few who have overstayed a visa or worked one hour too many while on student visa? They are such a tiny proportion, less than one percent, of our annual immigration. What the hell do we get out of torturing a token few, wrecking the lives of them and their families, with the taxpayer paying about a hundred and fifty dollars a day per detainee to the private company with the rather Orwellian name, Global Security Limited?

Wouldn’t you want your children to believe in the values of hospitality and offering help to those who need it? Wouldn’t you want your children to believe in and value the mutual support and friendship of the whole family of humanity?

Next time you’re polled, or casting a vote, or giving your opinion to your MP, think about whether you want to be one of those who supported this horrible rejection of refuge to the wounded stranger, or one of those who demanded a humane society.

(Submitted to smh for the first word feature)

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