In our first part, we saw that a flood of migrants is pouring into Europe and learned some of the reasons. Here, we want to consider how we should respond.
As a migrant myself, the son of a migrant father, grandson of four migrant grandparents, and with some of our family as former refugees, this topic is of great important to me personally. Here are some thing to consider:
1. Orderly & sustainable: There are those in the West who want unlimited immigration, replete with immigration services and welfare benefits. This is simply unsustainable: No country can take in everyone who wants refuge, not even the United States, which is the Number One favoured haven of migrants worldwide. Healthy realism, not ‘feel good’ rhetoric, is sorely needed;
2. Economic opportunists Though no statistics are currently available, many of the would-be migrants are young men, equipped with the best cell phones and money in the bank. They are not refugees; they are migrants looking for a better opportunity. Nevertheless, they are joining the flow of refugees while the door to Europe is open. This is not necessarily bad in itself, however, when there are limited ‘seats at the dinner table,’ economic opportunists are taking the places of those who are truly needy;
3. Minorities: In the Middle East, minorities like Christians and Yazidis are the neediest of all; yes, there are Muslim suffering in the Muslim world war. Yet you can be sure if a Syrian or Iraqi Christian or Yazidi shows up on a Greek island, they are genuine refugees in need of asylum; they have a valid reason for protection and should be made a top priority. They will also be the quickest to assess;
4. National sovereignty: Every nation has the right to screen migrants and turf out terrorists or even opportunists, if they don’t meet the criteria as set out by the individual nation; while national sovereignty still means anything, we need to respect this;
5. Take another look at multiculturalism: This dominant philosophy says that all cultures are equally valid, benign, and beneficial; no one culture is better than another. If this is the case, why do many migrants leave their own culture to embrace the western version? Multiculturalism discourages assimilation of migrants into the mainstream and views the prevailing Judeo-Christian culture with contempt. On the other hand, America was renowned for its ‘melting pot’ concept, where migrants from China, Poland, Argentina, or wherever, blended int and became ‘Americans.’ Don’t mix up multiculturalism with immigration - the point being that genuine refugees and approved migrants should want to blend into their new country, not build an impregnable enclave of the one they left?
6. West is Best? Whenever possible, it is best to keep refugees in their own culture zone; the differences of an alien culture can be overwhelming. Many refugees would prefer to return home if it were stable. The ever-increasing coarseness of western culture could be grievously offensive to migrants from strongly family-orientated and religious backgrounds, and nothing short of a revival can stop this.
Handled properly, migrants can help fuel economic growth and lift up sagging population figures. Handled poorly, it can lead to social disunity and dysfunction.
It’s important to ‘get it right,’ especially now.