Tuesday, June 28, 2005

An Immigration Paradox

I don't claim to have the answer to the question I'm about to pose. But with all the brouhaha over deportations to Zimbabwe, there's an obvious question that needs to be tackled. I make no apologies for placing this on the theoretical level, by the way.

Some asylum seekers will come here to Britain with no real credentials for asylum. Yet, their mere act of coming here in the attempt to seek asylum will genuinely place them in fear of their lives should they be returned to their home countries - which is, legally, what should happen to failed applicants for asylum.

It seems to me that if we are compelled to take them because of this fact, then it makes a mockery of having an asylum system. It isn't actually being in fear of your life that qualifies you to take refuge in this country - it's being able to get to this country in the first place. Now, given that I think that measures such as allowing asylum seekers to work are the only fair ways of treating these people once we welcome them to our country, it's fairly clear that allowing people to stay here means that we just have open-border immigration from the most dangerous regimes in the world. Can this be right - that people are able to bend the rules like this?