Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Open your eyes

Afternoon all, how are you doing today?

I have just had a major sort our of all my art and paint supplies. And boy was it satisfying. Like cleaning out your handbag, or rearranging your sock drawer. Major satisfaction levels achieved.


There has been a lot in the media recently about the European Elections (seeing as we voted last week and everything) and there has been something brewing in my mind that I need to write about.

So apologies if you're not in the mood for a political discussion, but this is my blog, and I can do what I want! (Insert cackle here....)

It saddens me greatly to know that UKIP have now got seats on the European parliament, and that also in France, the Front National party gained significant advances.

Both of these right wing political parties, have based their campaigns on anti-immigration. They have been scare-mongering people into believing that immigrants are not welcome in their country. That these immigrants will steal your jobs and your money. They are using propaganda to feed into peoples fear, insecurities and down right ignorance. They are manipulating the public at an increasingly fast rate.

Only this morning French riot police dismantled 3 migrant camps in Calais. They have given no indication as to where these hundreds of people will go. They are stranded. Many have fled from the horrific conflicts in Syria and Afghanistan, hoping for a life away from war and fear.

Perhaps I am a tree hugging hippie, but I have always believed that the world we live in belongs to each one of us. And we have a responsibility for each other. I'm not precious about this little island called Britain, if people are desperate to come here, who am I to turn them away?

Imagine yourself in a similar position.

Imagine you're fleeing Syria. Your family is separated. Your parents have been murdered. You don't know who to turn to, or where to go to. You have hardly any money. But then someone tells you about England. A place where you will be safe, where there is no war. A democratic society. Freedom of speech. Peace.

So you begin your journey. The longest journey you've ever had to make.

But when you arrive, you're interrogated, questioned, discriminated against. This is not the England you've heard about.

We are the lucky ones. We were born here. By chance, this is where we ended up. But don't you ever wonder what your life would be like if you were born somewhere else on this planet? I think we can all forget just how blessed we are to live in a country where we can vote, practise religion, have free health care, get help finding a job, or a house, and not have a brutal dictator ruling over our lives.

In my own life, I have experienced people saying to me, "what have you got to be depressed about? Think about those poor children in Africa!" or "count your blessings, you should be happy!" These, of course, are some of the most unhelpful things to say to someone with depression. However, on a day when the black dog isn't barking so loudly, I am able to be grateful for many things in my life.

It is through being able to acknowledge this, that I was able to write this post.

I want people to open their eyes.

Step out of their box.

Remember that we are brothers and sisters on this planet.

No matter what our nationality, colour, race or religion, we should not turn our backs on each other.


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