Saturday, 2 June 2012

Asylum Seekers


The Daily Mail campaign must finally have struck a chord with Michael Howard who will put immigration at the heart of the Tory election campaign. Calling for limits on immigration and quotas for asylum seekers, Michael Howard has been accused of playing the ‘race card’

Just what is wrong with the Tory party? How can they possibly think that offering to reduce our tax rate and sort out the immigration problem will help them win the next election. Almost without doubt, both tax and immigration are the subject of great concern to a large percentage of the voting population, but is that likely to send me running to the polling booth in support of Michael Howard? I don’t think so. Why? Perhaps it is due to my inherent mistrust of politicians in general and their false promises, particularly before a forthcoming election. Having been let down too many times in the past I have no reason to assume that this party is likely to be any different.

Does that mean I support Blair? No it does not. I am actually mistrustful of both leaders and only a ‘head or tails’ flip of the coin would decide the winner if push came to shove and I was pressed for an answer. Do I criticise Michael Howard because I think that this policy is racist? Almost certainly not. I do not actually think that this is a racist policy. This is a serious issue and one which needs attention. Under Tony Blair’s government Britain has seen immigration figures double. The general public now regard immigration as one of the most important single issues affecting Britain today. Can labour be trusted for another term?

Just how many refugees are genuine asylum seekers? Howard claims that a quarter of a million people whose asylum claims have failed are still allowed to live in this country. This campaign could not have come at a worse time for labour. A leaked government document now states that asylum seekers have contributed to rising street crime in Britain and is likely to be a factor in the spread of Aids in Britain. This damning report will be embarrassing and in contradiction to labours previous efforts to make light of the crime situation and its connection with immigration.

The leading and most active campaigner against immigration in the press has been the Daily Mail. Mainstream in its approach, widely popular, and with a large and loyal following, the Daily Mail has campaigned relentlessly against immigration and asylum seekers. Is there really a problem? Does it exist? Lets take a closer look at the implications of mass immigration.

First and foremost, it is important to understand that the asylum seeker is purely seeking a better life for themselves and their family. There is no loyalty to Britain and the prime aim of the majority of immigrants is a financially rewarding and secure future. Let us also not forget that there are genuine asylum seekers who have suffered unimaginable horrors and injustices from which they seek an escape route.

However, just why does Britain have to receive so many immigrants? Can we really afford it? In the short term we might get by but in the long term we will suffer with immigration levels that are too high. The potential problems include employment, health care and social security. There are many others. Each individual or family who does not work is a burden on this country’s resources. The over stretched National Health Service can barely cope as it is. What happens if there is a downturn in the economy or another recession? High levels of immigration do not necessarily mean more available social security benefits from central government.

Are we being paranoid? You decide. This is an emotive and bitter issue for many people. Every new immigrant is another person on this crowded isle, another consumer of resources. It matters not whether the immigrant is black, asian or white. An Asian friend recently explained. “What matters is that we are already finding it hard to accommodate those immigrants who have already been here for some time. Britain should send them back if they are not true asylum seekers”.

So what is the big deal on immigration? Well, I am not paid to worry about the problem unlike our elected government. I have no strong passionate views on the subject of immigration. However, I do worry. The current level of interest in immigration by the Tories and Labour alike leaves me uneasy and unsettled.

Then I look at the photo of the two young boys shown at the head of this article. Why shouldn’t they want a better life and who could possibly blame them. Born in the wrong country, faced with the same situation – What would you do?

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