Just a quickie roundabout response to danuiseult’s lovely piece of writing and RoS’s Costa Del Fish’n’Chips – the problem with immigration.
You see, I’ve been listening to the news on Radio 4: yes, yes, I know I said I didn’t watch the news, but this was just using my ears, not my eyes….I’m not sure I’m going to do it again, because my neighbours probably think that shouting at the radio constitutes some sort of mental breakdown and were eying me very warily in the front garden this morning…Anyway, as I was saying, the news- it was full of Abu Hamza’s High Court challenge to avoid extradition to the US, and quite apart from the fact that I find it hard to think of any crime which deserves a spell in a US prison, I have to say that I am sick of hearing the whole ‘why can’t we just deport him’ argument. Yes, it’s costing us £50,000 a year to keep him in prison; yes, it’s costing us thousands to house his family; yes, his lawyer is paid for with *shock* *horror*, Daily Mail readers look away, TAX PAYERS MONEY! Well, so what? This is the price we pay for living in a society which at least tries to pretend it is civilised, a society with laws about how we treat people, even people we don’t like. If we deported him, these laws would be useless, and we’d all be vulnerable: we can’t make exceptions for someone because we’ve decided they’re really too bad to merit OUR continuing to behave properly ergo the fact he is still here means that our human rights laws are working- phew! – And, this is the very thing that demonstrates our difference from terrorists, fundamentalists and all those who seek to enforce their draconian views with violence and lawlessness, which stomps all over human rights. I am lucky to be living in a country that can’t just throw people out without due process so stick that in your pipe Daily Mail readers!
Here’s where danuiseult’s blog comes into it: I apply the same principle to so called ‘benefit scroungers’. As I commented in response to her piece, if benefit scroungers really do exist, then funding them is a price that I am prepared to pay so that I can live in a society which chooses to do the right thing by helping vulnerable people. I’m happy for the tax I pay to support someone who is ‘lazy’ if it means that all the people who really need help, get it, and I’d rather accept this than be part of a ‘scrounger’ witch hunt.
Enough said. *Gets off soap box, rubs knees, goes to make a nice cup of tea.*