Thursday, August 30, 2012

Najeeeba Wazefadost

I still don't have a firm opinion on the asylum seeker situation in Australia.

I probably never will.

But today I watched the April 25, 2011 episode of Q and A, and it has me leaning a certain way.

One of the panelists was Najeeba Wazefadost. She came as a refugee on a boat in 2000. Or 2001?   Well, it was sometime in the beginning of this century.


I'm big on analogies, and Najeeba provided one when asked about queue jumpers and people smugglers.

She said:

Just imagine yourself that you live in a room where the room is in fire and even though you know the right exit towards that room is the door but you see the window is open so you will take the window to jump out of that fire to survive. That's what we did.

Desperate people don't always take the right path. This is especially the case when the right path is a long and difficult path.

Is it fair, though, for the people who are taking the right path?

I don't know.

Do the actions of the people on boats make the refugee camp people's wait even longer?     

Najeeba went on to say,  We had to get the closest way and like today Australia is trying to show us the right pathway to called the legal migrants but what is legal migrants? Coming by airplane or (indistinct) even exist in countries like Afghanistan. How would people go and apply for those applications which get processed by years? Will people survive by then? That's the question.

If there truly a queue, is it more easily accessible by certain groups of people?

If we compare people in detention centres to people waiting in refugee centres, Are they from the same countries for the most part? 

Do some countries provide an easier path to the acceptable method of coming to Australia? 

Why do some people come by boat, and others wait in the queue? Is it about having a different set of morals? Is it about who has more money? Is it about opportunity?

I still think the best solution is to send safe legal boats over and pick people up. 

To add to Najeeba's analogy: the window in the fiery room is very unsafe. It's broken and full of jagged edges. There's a good chance you could severe an artery while going through it.

What if we could create and open up a safe window?

Of course, the problem is, if you open up a safe window, tons of people are going to want to go through it. 

It's impossible to save everyone. Unfortunately.

But it would be nice to save as many as possible.