Sunday, May 24, 2015


Rohingya and Bangladeshi migrants in Thailand.

Discovery of mass graves in Malaysia, just over the Thai border, exposes a core factor in the current swell of illegal migration across the planet. Human predators are exploiting human ignorance and desperation for profit.

Imagine this. You notice as you drive down your street there is a camp of surly men with weapons on your corner. They are surrounded by pitiable homeless people in rags with screaming hungry children clinging to them. You decide to call the police when you get in your house. You find that the door of your house has been forced open. Several impoverished strangers are in your home. They do not speak your language. They have nothing. They are malnourished. They have no skill sets to even assist in their own support. Yet they look to you to save them from their situation.

You call the police. They tell you they are overwhelmed with complaints like yours. They tell you to cope with the situation until something can be done. They give you no idea of when that will happen. You call your local social services. They say the same thing the police said to you. You call churches, synagogues, mosques. You decipher the language the strangers are speaking. You call the embassy of their native country. Nobody can offer you any support or sound advice on the problem.

You look down the street at the armed men on the corner. They are counting money taken from the people they have placed in your home. They are laughing and drinking. You wonder how long it will be before they decide to take control of your whole neighborhood for their own needs.

Yes, migration is a complex issue as long as you have the luxury and distance to ponder it. But when it is in your face, that luxury no longer exists. You pay for the food to feed the strangers in your home. You pay for their health care. You pay for their children's education. You may eventually have to pay more for security to drive the traffickers off your street. How will you feel about the strangers in your home then?

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