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 Immigration - Worried? Welcoming? or Not bothered?

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Number of posts : 62
Age : 47
Location : Solihull, England
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Immigration - Worried? Welcoming? or Not bothered?   Tue Jul 22, 2008 5:33 am

There is great debate nowadays (especially in certain newspapers) regarding the issue of immigration in the UK. What do you think about it (if you do)? Are immigrants good for the economy and country? Should they be sent home? Are they ok, as long as they aren't living next door to you? Weren't we all immigrants at one time or another? How many generations does it take for them to no longer be considered to be immigrants and accepted as British?

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Number of posts : 102
Age : 47
Location : Birmingham, UK
Registration date : 2008-07-23

PostSubject: Re: Immigration - Worried? Welcoming? or Not bothered?   Thu Jul 24, 2008 6:27 am

Once again, this is a highly popular subject with certain right wing newspapers, who are convinced that we are being overrun by all these foreigners who are coming over here to steal our jobs, live off our benefits and steal our free medical treatment.

The truth is that this country is built on immigration. Not a single person in this country is not descended from someone that came here from another country.

Having, myself, been an immigrant in many other countries throughout the world, I am often amazed that anyone would want to immigrate to this country. The weather is awful, the government is a mess, the people are the most hostile and unfriendly to visitors in the world. Everywhere I went when I was travelling (and I spent nearly 15 years travelling around the world 5 times, living in 13 different countries and visiting over 50 countries) the people were friendly, helpful and welcoming to strangers. They would gladly feed you and give you a place to stay and they would go out of their way to make you feel comfortable and welcome. All except the UK, where we treat foreigners like lepers.

We, in Britain, think of ourselves as "special" and "blessed" and so imagine that everyone else in the world wants nothing more than to live in this wonderful country of ours. Yet the truth is that we are a fairly insignificant little island on the outskirts of Europe, with awful weather and worse attitudes. There is absolutely nothing special about the British, apart from being incredibly arrogant.

However, all that said, I do believe that anyone coming to live in this country should learn to speak the language (wherever I went, I spoke the language of that area) and should not isolate themselves into their own little "communities" or self-imposed ghettos. By "keeping their culture" whilst living in this country, they are marking themselves out as different, so antagonising those people who already have some ill-feeling towards them. The point is that if you choose to go and live in another country, you do so because you want to live in that country, so creating a mini version of your old country within that country is just a ridiculous idea, you may as well have stayed where you were in the first place. I wouldn't go to live in another country and insist on only mixing with other English there, and setting up a little area where everything around is English influenced. That would be completely pointless in my view. Mind you, the English are guilty of doing this very thing in other countries, just look at Spain, where there are whole areas of fish and chip shops and English pubs for the benefit of the English tourists. confused

My point is that I welcome anyone choosing to move to Britain to live, just as I felt welcomed wherever I went on my travels, but if they choose to do so then they really should try and integrate into British society, after all that's exactly what you moved to join, and not segregate yourself within a community of people from your old country.

I can understand why immigrants do tend towards these self-imposed ghettoes, as it provides them some support and comfort and familiarity in a strange and often hostile country, but the point is that you chose to move away from that culture and into another culture, so accept that new culture or go back to the culture that you prefer, don't try and force your culture on the native population (if they wanted to live in that culture, they would move to a country with that culture).

That aside, anyone who complains about the influx of immigrants is just being silly. In most cases they are not "stealing our jobs", as they tend to take jobs that the British refuse to do themselves. They can't life off our benefits (no matter what certain newspapers tell you), as the government won't give them any. And as for them stealing out medical treatments, firstly, in most cases, they donít get treated for free, as we do, and secondly if they are working in this country then they are paying tax here and so are entitled to free medical treatment just as anyone else that works and pays tax here is.

In many cases, these immigrants (especially ones from Eastern Europe) only end up staying here for a few years before they return home again, so the real effect is much less than some people would have you believe.
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Number of posts : 56
Location : Birmingham
Registration date : 2008-08-19

PostSubject: Re: Immigration - Worried? Welcoming? or Not bothered?   Tue Aug 19, 2008 7:43 pm

I agree with what you said about integration. Where I think immigration should be more of a political issue among the public is that the government has encouraged immigration as another way of keeping wage levels down, because immigrants tend to accept lower wages. High wage costs have always been a problem for companies, as they limit the amount of profits a company can make. Now that the unions have been laregly defeated, the government has turned to this method to keep in with the capitalists.

By the way, immigrants with refugee status can claim benefits, and I think the rules are the same as for indigenous claimants. Those with EU citizenship are now being prevented from doing so, presumably because they've come from countries with better social support than refugees have.
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