Stop the boats. Start the ships

Seriously Australia. We can do better. We need to do better.

Call him Ismael…


We have a bunch of people. Humans. With stories. Stories just like Ishmael’s. Joining us at church every Sunday.

How can we keep turning our backs on stories like this using pejoratives like “queue jumper” – there is no queue. There is relative safety in refugee camps where the Taliban aren’t (as far as I know) driving around shooting people. But how can we say men and women like Ishmael are doing the wrong thing by coming to our shores seeking safety?

This situation is broken. This world is broken. These are people.

We can do better.


[…] (h/t Nathan Campbell at St. Eutychus) […]

Andrew Dircks says:

Nathan, thanks for this.

There is queue.
Now I’m not saying I’m happy with current situation. I think Australia should accept massively larger numbers of refugees. But there is a queue. I’ve lived and worked in Christian ministry in Cairo and in Bangkok. In both places there are large numbers of ‘refugees’ and also asylum seekers applying for refugee status. And in both places people with refugee status apply for relocation to Australia. And from both places some of these people are accepted and brought to Australia. As I say, I think Australia should accept massively larger numbers of such people, but we are already accepting some. I know personally some people who are now in Australia who have come by this pathway, both from Thailand and from Egypt. This is a queue.

Nathan Campbell says:

Hi Andrew,

You are correct to say that there is a place where people can queue, but refugees are not legally obliged to queue. They can seek asylum wherever they want, however they want.

AndyM says:

so there is a queue that can be jumped. How many do we take in, and what do we do when n+1 persons ask to come in? There are literally millions in the world who would love to come to australia.

Consider the numbers we resettle (as opposed to hosting them in camps with no hope of forming a life in their new country. we could, of course, be doing better, but we are far from slackers internationally when it comes to this issue.

AndyM says:

even if people don’t “have” to queue, our culture is one where queues are respected, and jumping of them is resented as unfair to those who followed the process.