I am sick of media perpetuating nonsense about immigrants and any western country’s capacity to accommodate them.
For centuries Europe and other “developed” nations have leached material, people, ideas, and anything else we want from the rest of the world. Even though the formal empires of old are gone, this has never stopped, we continue to suck resources form beyond our borders, and in return have been busy pumping out all manner of pollution and environmental destruction that the entire planet has to suffer.
Thanks to that, 20% of the people in the world (mostly developed countries) have managed to get themselves 80% of the world’s wealth. And don’t think yourself so far removed from this dear reader: To enter the much lambasted 1% you need to earn something like £40,000 a year, that’s a pretty attainable wage for middle class westerners. And it only takes an annual wage of around £12,500 (that’s half the UK average) to be among the top 10% most wealthy people in the world. (Source)
That’s reason enough to justify anyone wanting to come and build a more lucrative life in the west. As a westerner I can freely choose to visit and even live in just about any country I wish, mostly without even any consideration of my skills, intent, or attitude. Yet if I were born in Africa, and risked my life on an epic journey to reach Europe, with the express purpose of making myself an economic asset in form labour, I would not be worthy of entering the continent.
And on top of that there are more people in the world displaced by conflict and persecution than ever before. Countries neighbouring Syria (with plenty of their own problems already) have seen their populations balloon. Meanwhile much wealthier Europe can't contemplate accepting even a fraction of these refugees.
We have sown the seeds for this. We went out into the world and stole all its resources. In the process we have caused all manner of local environmental destruction, that disadvantages people nearby, and caused global warming, which is already making life harder for people all around the world (it may have even been one of the triggers for the Syria conflict). We go with our guns interfering in other nations and telling them how great our capitalist society is. And then we wonder why people would want to come to this promised land, and escape the hells we have created.
We have a problem in the west, but it’s not immigration, it’s greed. We always want more. We treat it like a basic human right that we should all drive cars, have multiple far flung holidays every year, eat meat every day, have everything we use be utterly disposable, and always in need of an upgrade to the next style just months later. And then we export this culture of consumption and desire to the rest of the world.
We should welcome immigrants with open arms. These are people who have already gone to extraordinary lengths just to get here - What better demonstration could you get of their attitude to work!
Stop finding excuses to be afraid of these other humans. Will they take jobs from us? No. People make jobs; the more people there are the more goods and services are needed to support them, populations balance their own employments needs. Will they cripple our infrastructure? No. They will work, they will pay taxes, they will fund and build all the extra infrastructure they need. Will they drive down wages or exploit our benefits? Only if we inflict those same problems on ourselves. If we don’t pay each other enough, if we force each other to need benefits to live when a job isn’t enough, that is a problem for our society, however many immigrants do or do not come. Will they change our culture? Absolutely, as it always has done and always will. No society is fixed, thank god, and ideas are worth sharing and developing whether they are from the next village or the other side of the world.