Author Archives: healdria

Some thoughts on the refugee issue – Monica

Disclaimer! I haven’t got my facts, this is just how I “Feel” about the issue, it may not be coherent!!

When asked if it was wrong for these people to be sent off to life-time imprisonment in concentration camps with poor conditions, my heart would of course tell you it is wrong. Because it is a terrible thing, and I wouldn’t want it to happen to me let along wishing it on someone else. But I cannot say that the PM’s decision is wrong either, my reasons are simple, the country is overcapacity, and the money the government would potentially have to spend on settling these people would do more good if it were spent on bettering their home countries. All that being said, I see the fundamental issue in a very different way.

The involvement of wealthy western countries is a major contributing factor to these sufferings. For whatever reason, humanitarian or not, the premature exposure to western living standards has created vertical aspirations for the citizens of developing countries. It’s purely an act of imperialism to urge developing countries to catch-up to the footsteps of the developed countries. That the “way of life” must adhere to western standard is ridiculous and arrogant. Without the stark comparison of lifestyles the people of developing countries would have followed a more natural and steady path to growth and prosperity, instead of mistaking temporary aid for permanent income. It renders the people unproductive, and governments unresponsive and unaccountable. Through their arrogance, the western societies impose on themselves the unnecessary duties to “look after” their “less fortunate” neighbors. If change is inevitable then these battles msut be fought by those with direct relevance. These people need to fight for their own freedom, it is not our job to do it for them.

I find some of the points from this video address what I’m trying to say:
Dambisa Moyo on why aid to Africa has been a disaster

Australia’s involvement in these warfare are more like a demonstration of power and loyalty to its military allies. While I cannot comment on the necessity of such turn of event, it has definitely bestowed a certain level of guilt on the government for displacing large populations of people from their homes due to its direct involvement in local warfare. Should the government feel a sense of accountability then it would have been driven to take in these queue jumping refugees even when the country is over capacity. If is deemed as an act of selfishness to turn these people away, then these people are not less guilty then us, for having left their suffering people behind, in search of a life that is more likely not going to live up to their expectations. I can only imagine the sense of displacement for these people even if they do make it onshore. The gravity of culture clash and the likelihood of forever remaining as second class citizens looms, and their children will most likely be lost to their cultural heritage and suffer a lifetime of “fitting in” issues.

Perhaps those who took their emotional response to the street, failed to see that it isn’t just land we are sharing, it is our welfare system, which is no stranger to exploitation; and it is our job opportunities that we will have to share, perhaps with people that will not be able to contribute equally either due to their level of education, or simply a lack of effort. It isn’t fair for the people of Australia to pay for a better life for these people. It would be to regress our complex government structure to the same level of developing countries to ignore the level of uncontrollable change this could bring. Change isn’t bad, but it needs to be planned.

Essentially I don’t believe in a system that prolongs and delays people’s reaction to oppression. The longer we provide what seems like endless aid the less likely these people will fight for change. Escaping their home country in search of a better life is the easy way out compared to those still fighting for their beliefs.

Belated intro – Monica

I migrated to Australia 15 years ago, received my education here from the second half of grade six through to the end of my first degree. As previously discussed in class, my main intention of returning to Uni after a 4 year break is really just to find a sense of purpose. That being said, I’m not about to become an activist with someone else’ values leading the way. I reject the idea of following someone else’ moral standards and detest anyone’s attempt at making me “join the club”.

I am not unfeeling, I simply do not see the point of a discussion that neither solves the problem nor help it progress from point A to B. Of all the “young people our age” that took their emotional response to the street, how many actually gave their actions a thorough thought? I’m simply numb towards such mindless attempts at demonstrating one’s morality and self-righteousness. I won’t take part of something that is no more affective on addressing the problem then simply letting it be. I don’t see this as pessimistic thinking or selfishness, it’s a sense of clarity, that the physical demonstration of one’s emotional response to an issue is very short sighted. The problems need to be addressed strategically, systematically and creatively of course.

The whole reason I chose this course was to find out how, through employing design techniques I can attempt to curb human behavior. Making a fuss through rallying is not going to help with any issue. We cannot play gods nor force entities bigger than ourselves to change their decisions, without resources. The work needs to be carried out through the subconscious. The human mind is a paradox in its own right. It resists change at the same time it also craves adventure. My aim through this course is to learn how, as a designer I can influence human behavior and consequently find better ways at connecting people through the subconscious, via common platforms, where a greater collective can be achieved.

Perhaps in short I want to learn the craft of mind controlling of the masses!