I’ve been reading twitter and Facebook recently, especially following yesterdays announcement regarding Article 50, and I’ve been confused.
One tweet read: “We’ve never bombed Morocco, why are they coming here?” another tweet said they were shocked to see a lack of women and children in the queue for the buses around France and for shipping to the UK. There were plenty of hashtags that said things like #deportmuslims and #sendthemback.
I’ll try my best to tackle these ideas.
First, “We’ve never bombed Morocco.” It’s infantile rhetoric, as if the dropping of bombs validates someone leaving their country or not. Morocco has seen it’s fair share of civil unrest, including terrorist attacks as recently as 2011. It’s GDP (see image – 103.1) is tiny in comparison to European countries, especially France, Germany and the UK.
The vast majority of migrants to the UK are those seeking work, or education. You can see from the image that many of the North African countries are in some kind of armed conflict, inflicted on them by militant groups such as Boko Haram or corrupt governments. The Middle East is also as war-torn, with the Afghanistan war lasting for 20 – 30 years and the civil war raging in Syria since 2011. It does not matter whether or not “we” bombed them. These countries have undergone serious unrest for decades.
In terms of the footage, that I watched on twitter, of a camera spanning down the queue of migrants waiting for buses – yes. There were no women or children. However, what is important are the statistics, and rather than believing in this selective footage, a wider reading and understanding of the topic is probably for the best before you spout racist rhetoric. The media, especially from such a selective and small source, are always trying to encourage or suggest a rhetoric. In this case, it’s fear-mongering.
It encourages rhetoric like this: “Not a single refugee amongst them they’re ALL economic migrant freeloading scum.” Now what is an economic migrant? Someone who moves from a poor country to a rich country. For what? To work. I’ve worked in restaurants for four years and I can tell you that the hardest working and most devoted people I have worked alongside had been so called “economic migrants.” Sixty hours in a kitchen a week. They pay their taxes. They use our services. They live on your street.
Freeloading scum? Ah. Our welfare system barely works for those who have been living in the country for years and years. The application for benefits in this country is a long and difficult process. This scary idea originates from awful publications such as the Daily Mail and the Sun which take isolated incidents and blow them massively out of proportion: to do what? Sell newspapers. They don’t care what you or Dave thinks, or what kind of message they are perpetuating.
It’s dangerous. And scary.
Educate where you can.