If you’re just tuning in: Things have been kind of scary lately for migrants in the UK, to be honest. The UK Boarder Agency has recently rolled out this new campaign where they are putting up flyers and rolling vans around multi-ethnic neighbourhoods, telling people that if they are not here legally that they should “go home or face arrest,” or worse, in Glasgow they’ve put these signs up where Asylum seekers sit, telling them that if it’s so hard for them to live here, they (the UKBA) will book a flight for them and send them back – completely missing the point that most asylum seekers are fleeing where they came from because it isn’t safe to live there anymore.
The whole situation is rather volatile with groups that are for closing all boarders into the UK gaining support, which is appalling to me, because it says that they are intolerant of anyone who is different from them, regardless of their reasons for coming. The movement is, thankfully, is being met with anger and rage, but it isn’t being well reported (IMHO), so very few people inside the country – let alone outside – are even aware of what is really going on. It’s kind of scary for me because, with the UKBA holding my passport, if I’m stopped by one of their random “spot-checks” (see racial profiling gone wild), even though I am here legally, I could still be arrested and held for who-knows-how-long until they can confirm my legitimacy… or come up with some excuse to harass me further.
My Husband understands, thankfully, and he’s mad as you wouldn’t believe about how unjust the whole thing is. We’re not doing anything wrong, so we should have no reason to fear – excepting some random aspiring KKK-type maybe deciding I’m someone to victimise because I’m just dark enough to not be “legit.” To be honest, I almost want something like that to happen, just so I can have the excuse to turn on them and give them a piece of my mind, maybe put them back into their places a little – though realistically, I know that’s just a very, very, bad idea.
I don’t want to be a number or a statistic. I am a human being, I have feelings, I have emotions, I have a heart and I have a voice. The fact that I am writing this is proof of that fact. People need to be made aware that their fear and hate is not only misguided and prejudiced, but directly impacts, adversely harms friends, family, co-workers, loved ones and complete strangers alike.
People who are completely innocent are being terrorised; innocent men, women and children who’s only crime – if that – was in wanting to live somewhere safe. To condemn others to return to a country that has been destabilised and is at war is tantamount to condemning them to death. It isn’t okay in a morally enriched society, regardless the era.
What if it was your child? What if it was your family? What if it was you? Don’t sit there and say “Well it isn’t me, so it isn’t my problem,” because that’s not true – it IS YOUR PROBLEM. What if you had to get up in the morning and go to work and spend the whole day worried that your spouse – who is here legally – might be grabbed in a “spot-check” and accused of this that or the other for no other reason than for the fact that they may speak with an accent, or wear religious head-gear/clothing, have a skin-colour that makes them a target? How would you feel? What if you were the legally born UK Citizen that constantly gets pulled aside and questioned because they happen to be from African/Asian/Latin-American parents or even from a mixed heritage that’s been here for generations? How would you feel?