All posts tagged: Migrants

Migration or Immigration: Why are so many people crossing borders?

You have probably heard about caravans of people, forming in Central America and travelling to the US border, and then crossing into the US and claiming to be refugees. You might have also heard that many refugee claimants decide that the US does not have what they need, and then cross into Canada. That might have stopped, with the COVID crisis. Governments can say that they are keeping people out for health reasons. If the COVID crisis declines enough, that route for migration will start again. There are other migrant routes. People travel across the English channel to Britain in small boats, usually from France. They also want to live in a new country, and thousands are trying. Some find a boat with room for them, and cross over to England, or drown. I have crossed the channel on large ferries, and once on a large hovercraft. That was interesting for me, but I would never want to sail in those rough waters in a small boat. There are also people who travel from Africa, …

Credit: Amout Wurst/Flickr/Creative Commons

Migrants, Border Jumpers, Refugees, and Us

I saw something the other day, and it shocked me. This is not new for me, but I don’t like to be reminded that I am correct. We think we are good people, but reality can tell a different story. I have a volunteer contract with a famous Christian charity. I won’t name them and I won’t report what happened inside their building, to keep confidentiality, but they are famous everywhere for helping the poorest and most desperate. My job is to teach their staff how to write administrative reports, which fits some of my skill set. Two days ago, I reported for a tutorial session at a location in the inner city, and I was shocked. Outside, in the alley I saw several African people. Later, when I drove home, I saw more of them wandering the streets in our poorest neighborhood. My impression was that they were desperate and unhappy and they were begging for help from organized charities. The inner city is also called skid row, or the slums, and it is …

Liminal -- a doorway to a new world. Photo Jens Schott Knudsen/Flickr

Jihad vs the Liminal Bulge

There are two news stories from the Middle East. Young Muslims raised in prosperous western countries are returning to Syria or Somalia to fight for Jihad, the holy war of Islam. This is a major security concern. Families are losing their teen children, and some young westerners become vicious executioners. Also, Syrians, Muslim Arabs, are migrating to Europe in huge numbers. I don’t want to add to all the discussion, but it is clear that Syrians are not escaping a terrible war in their home country. They are leaving refugee camps in Turkey, where they are safe, but where they have no hope. Hiding among the Syrians are many from places liked Bangladesh, Afghanistan, and Iraq who are looking for better jobs. When these Muslims leave Muslim majority Turkey, and scramble onto the beaches in Greece or Italy they shout “freedom” and act like they have just escaped from something terrible. There are rumors that many convert to Christianity in Europe. I suspect many more convert to western materialism. This escape from Islam must be …