As I write this post, I think about the thousands of refugees fleeing their homelands to safety. Who can ignore the plight of these families and those of others who have no one but themselves to find a new life in a foreign land? Who really likes to leave the comfort of the familiar? Whoever loves to be uprooted? While people are not trees, we all have a place we often call “home.”
The story of people in exodus, fleeing persecution from home is nothing new. It’s as old as time. Yet, to see such scale of human suffering in this modern day and age is beyond one’s comprehension. The plight of ordinary Syrians and Iraqis, and other people escaping conflict and other drivers of forced migration deserve our attention. Somewhere in other parts of the world, the same scenarios are happening. Who can forget the modern boat people – the stateless Rohingyas from Burma. Who says this does not concern you or me?
As we see the gates of Europe opening, and communities welcoming these strangers, one can feel that sense of awe that humanity is still alive and throbbing. No one is ever alone.
Yet, one can wonder how many percent of these host communities are truly welcoming? Those horrible scenes of people being kicked and fed like animals, or those thrown back to the sea – just some of the manifestations of latent mistrust and prejudice.
Governments have their international obligations. Beyond that, we share common humanity. This is what is supposed to be enduring.