Oh people. People of the UK. At times I know I sit on a different side of the fence to the majority. That is fine. I’m used to it. Yet last night when I saw an e-petition get shared on social media entitled, Stop all immigration and close the UK borders until ISIS is defeated then I started to get angry. Not because this e-petition exists, as I’m not surprised some people would think like this but because over a quarter of a million people had signed it. Overnight another 50,000 people have seemingly signed it and I want to go up to every single one of them and shake them vigorously asking if they understand exactly what they are arguing for.
Here is what we know, there are some bad guys (and girls) out there who are determined to change our way of life. They want the western world to take steps back and allow them to lord over huge swathes of the Middle East without any interference. They want this so they can use terror and intimidation to get what they want, whether they be to kill who they want to kill, rape who they want to rape, do some genocide just for the thrills, force people to follow the path that they want them to follow. Is this really what we want for people who are of the same species to us? Are we really so insular that we care only about what we can see if our own very narrow field of vision?
Just because we can’t physically see the danger that millions of people face doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist. These refugees are fleeing from these barbaric people because what the people of Paris faced on Friday night is akin to what these people face every single day. Read your newspapers and you’ll see stories most days about people being rounded up in IS held territories and being executed for a variety of made-up reasons, that the terrorists use to reinforce their power and control over people. Would we accept that if it was us in that was us and would we want the world to turn a blind eye? Fuck no we wouldn’t.
It is easy to turn yourselves off to what is having beyond your spectrum. It is so easy to bury your head in the sand but these people are out there and they are brutally tearing apart the lives of millions of people. By closing our borders until this horrific terrorist group are defeated all we are saying is that we are all right and everyone else can deal with helping out these people fleeing from fear. Is that who we are? Are we really the type of people that only care about our lot in life and can’t empathise with those who have it so so so much worse?
There but for the grace of God is a great saying (although God doesn’t exist but still) and it is pure luck that you or I were born in the UK, where we have some many opportunities and relative freedom from oppression. We don’t get gunned down in the street just because we have a different point of view to someone else. Our sister and daughters aren’t taken by men with guns to be sex slaves just because they get off on it. These people face these scenarios daily and we wonder why they are desperately fleeing because lets be honest, wouldn’t we? Of course we fucking would.
Yes bad men and women will abuse the system to attempt to get into our country and carry out attacks aimed at changing our way of life but just because some bad people exist doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t help those who need help. People rag on the benefits system because a few bad eggs abuse it and take money that they don’t need or are entitled to but those few bad eggs taint the view of far too many. The benefits system is a lifeline to many but it is another example where our views are changed by the insignificant minority. People are being slaughtered and what some people want to do is totally looks inwards and not think about their fellow human beings. I know it sounds a bit Zen or hippy but we are but one species and we should be united against those who want to divide and conquer.
I’ll end this with this scenario. It is easy to ignore something that we cannot see but put yourself in this situation, you are walking down the street and you see a group of men with guns dragging a 12 year-old girl into a van and they start raping her. Do you get angry? Do you get scared? Do you feel helpless? Do you want to help? Do you want to do something to stop the pain this girl is feeling? Do you want to do anything you can to stop this happening? Just because it isn’t happening in your street doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. It is happening every single fucking day and we in the west have only seen the tip of what these barbarians want to do to people.
What a compassionate society does is welcome with open arms refugees, to give them a safe haven and an opportunity to not only to live but an opportunity to have a life. They are two distinctly different things and if people only care about themselves then they are perfectly entitled to do just that but for me, I don’t think that just because bad people aren’t in my field of vision they don’t exist. This is a time for the people of the UK to stand up for people who need our help, not to look the other way and tell the world that it isn’t our problem. Doing the easy thing is to walk away and tell the world that it isn’t our problem but the easy thing is very rarely the right thing.
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