So, if you’re a retired Gurkha, who once fought for the British Army, you now have the right to settle in the UK, but if you’re either an asylum seeker who escaped from a brutal political regime, or an economic migrant coming to work and improve your English, you still aren’t allowed in.
There’s a lot of media hypocrisy over the way that Parliament voted to allow retired Gurkhas the right to live in the UK. Forget about the embarrassment Prime Minister Gordon Brown suffered in his defeat on the issue. Almost every day (before the swine flu fever outbreak), there had been headlines in the newspapers claiming that immigrants were ‘swamping the country, taking our jobs, f*cking our women, milking our benefits system’. Put in some of the harsh policies introduced by the present government, and you get a situation where social tension rises and festers.
The Gurkhas may have been delighted to be allowed to settle here. But who in their right mind would want to come if they know they’re going to be subject to this simple anti-foreigner ranting that we see in the media? This should also cause resentment from asylum seekers, many of whom have to wait many years for their applications to be assessed, just to be told by the government that they can’t stay in the country.
The only logical way to end this madness is for the government to introduce a fair and consistent immigration policy, and ministers to tell it straight to the public that we need foreigners to help keep the country going. After all, in this recession, we’re going to need them more than they actually need us.