Of Lunatics and Asylum Seekers
Posted by Exile on April 16, 2008
A European Parliament civil liberties delegation has been carrying out its inspections of Danish asylum centres. They are welcome to do this. It’s no big deal. But one can question perhaps, why they should think it necessary. After all, this Denmark, not Darfur. Reading an article in Jyllands Postens “News in English”, I found this little collection of snippets;
After inspecting the Sandholm and Kongelunden asylum centres on 11 April, the delegation concluded that conditions were ‘generally satisfactory, although the milieu for children, forced to live in the centres for years, gave reason for concern’.
Panayiotis Demetriou, leader of the delegation, was especially angry over conditions for children at the centres. ‘They should at least be treated like human beings,’ he told TV2 News.
EP Vice-President Martine Roure told the Kuwait News Agency that the Danish asylum system ‘creates children who are born in Denmark and speak nothing but Danish, but who are not accepted in society’. She criticized the fact that asylum seekers must remain in the centres for years without having permission to work or receive an education.
Now, one might be tempted to believe that the children are kept in cages like animals if one was to take Mr. Demetriou at his word but that just isn’t so. And EP Vice-President Martine Roure is marching off in the wrong direction too.
I am not often at odds with the revered JP, publisher of infamous cartoons and defender of free speech, but this time they have rather conveniently omitted to give us the whole story. The people in these so called asylum centres are there “for years” for one simple reason. They have been through the legal system. Their case has been heard. They were found not to be genuine asylum cases. Therefore, they are not allowed into Denmark. They are free to leave. They are not prisoners, political or otherwise. They can simply leave the country. No one will stop them. In fact, we will even help them on their way with huge cash benefits filling their pockets. But no. They aren’t going. Why? Obviously because the thought of all that free income for life that is to be had in Denmark, which is what brought them here in the first place, is just too damn good to give up and leave. Not only that, but if the centres were so bad, and the conditions so unbearable, one would have thought that having the freedom to leave would make it almost imperative in the interests of ones children.
Apparently, some people just can’t take no for an answer, especially when it comes to asylum.
Left to the likes of Mr. Dimitriou and Ms. Vice President Roure, there would be no asylum laws. The country would open to all who were able to make the trip to our borders and simply claim the right to be here. A truly lunatic approach to the whole idea of asylum. Asylum is for the true refugee, the threatened, the truly oppressed. It should not be a comfort-blanket for the simply poor and over expectant masses of the third world, paid for by the efforts of generations of Europeans and their struggle to achieve some form of social welfare for their own children. This welfare should not be open to massive plunder by those who envy us and the social security that we and our forefathers have worked so hard for, not forgetting two European wars and a lot of blood and sweat.
Luckily, we do have checks and balances in Denmark and they work. Unfortunately, we do not yet have politicians who are willing to take the consequences of those checks and balances and force people out of the country if the grounds for their being here are proven not worthy. Which is partly why those people are living for years in asylum centres.
That is the true shame of these places. It is not that people are living there for years, but that we allow them to do so. And, I might add, at our expense.