Close the borders? | @srcav

cavStephen Cavadino is a maths teacher (and fanatic) from Leeds. He is a member of the Labour party. You can read of his musings on maths, teaching and life at cavmaths.wordpress.com . When he isn’t teaching; writing about, or doing maths he spends the majority of his time with his family, watching rugby (both codes) and playing guitar.

My heart sank with the news that came out of Paris.  The sheer terror that the people involved were faced with. The loss of life, the domain and suffering forced onto the families of those who were killed. It’s horrifying. These were just regular folk, going about their business. Many at a rock concert enjoying the music they love, some at a football match, possibly living the dream to have scored a ticket to such a big match. Others going about their normal business. This is a tragedy of the highest proportions, made worse by the fact that it was ignited by humans. People who made a conscious choice to force that pain onto others.

After my initial sadness and horror I felt a second wave coming. That wave came with the realisation of what was going to come next. The racists were gearing up, sharpening their knives,  they saw the opportunity to ride the wave of horror and try to legitimise their own agenda. “Close the borders”, “stop letting them in”, “the refugees aren’t really suffering – they’re ISIS soldiers sent to kill us.” I’ve seen tons of sentiments along these lines and it worries me completely. Being Asian doesn’t make someone a terrorist. Being Muslim doesn’t make someone a terrorist. These attacks by ISIS and other similar groups are commonplace in the countries these refugees are fleeing from, that’s why they’re trying to escape. This is surely a sign that we need to help more. The suggestion of closed borders is a ridiculous overreaction. Not only would it stop us aiding refugees it would also stop important roles in our society being filled, such a s doctors and nurses. It would harm the economy to stop holidaymakers in. It would mean cancelling international sporting fixtures and would mean new international signings weren’t allowed.

People are also using this to perpetuate their own Islamophobia and try to impose that on others. I’m an atheist, I have many issues with things said and believed by every religion, but I don’t think that makes them all terrorists and I don’t understand how anyone can jump to that conclusion. I know many Muslims and I know they would be the first to condemn the actions in Paris.

I’ve also seen people question why the press have covered these tragic events more than the tragic events in Japan. The truth of that matter is that the tragic events in Japan are a consequence of nature. The people of the area know earthquakes are likely and are trying to live with them, looking to prevent them, predict them and minimise their damage. The loss of life is still a horrific tragedy, but everything possible was done to try and avoid it, in Paris choices were made by people that inflicted the loss of life. And that’s why the press have focused on this event more.

These acts are immoral and indefensible. We need to remember that and hope to move forward towards a world where this doesn’t happen. The way to do that isn’t through racism, it isn’t through a knee jerk reaction of closing all the borders and it isn’t through the systematic carpet bombing of Muslim countries.

3 thoughts on “Close the borders? | @srcav

  1. I’m afraid this demonstrates the naivity and hypocrisy of the Liberal Left in the UK. The borders of the EU are not being closed to genuine refugees, who are prepared to register as asylum seekers at those borders. Over the past few months the ‘border states’ of the EU, including Hungary, where I live, have been expected to provide safe transit to an unprecedented mass inter-continental migration, without any special assistance or co-ordination from the European Commission. Many Hungarian volunteers have worked tirelessly to provide aid to migrants and refugees without discrimination, but have sometimes had that aid literally thrown back in their faces by an aggressive minority who have demonstrated their alienation from all forms of society. At the same time, the western media has continually denounced these states for even suggesting that there might be undesirable elements among this carefully co-ordinated movement of people, most of whom we know little about. Worse still, the desk-top campaigners in the UK who have a huge moat called the Channel to control who their government chooses to admit from a Schengen area they can simply ignore, point their fingers and label those inside who are trying to manage the flow ‘racists’. Put your own ‘house’ in order first! The UK has had fifty years of multiculturalism, while countries to the East of Europe were forced to accept monoculturalism. Don’t expect them to suddenly become paragons of western liberalism!

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