Immigration will be a topic at the front and centre of the European Elections, as well as a salient issue in next year’s General Election. Opponents of immigration have six common arguments at their disposal, so here’s a cut-out-and-keep guide for countering them.
Q. “They leech off the system”
A. Immigrants are actually net contributors to tax coffers. They are twice as likely to start a new business as a native Brit, more likely to employ others than a native Brit, and far less likely to claim benefits than a native Brit. And if you want to ensure immigrants don’t claim benefits, then illegal immigrants are preferable to those who follow the rules.
Q. “We need to protect our culture”
A. Cultures change, it’s what they do. Britain 50 years ago was different to Britain 100 years ago, which in turn was different to Britain 150 years ago.
Secondly, it’s not the government’s job to ‘plan culture’. UKIP bristle at wasteful government agencies like Culture Media & Sport (and rightly so), yet also want faceless civil servants to manage national identity on our behalf. When government plans anything it soon succumbs to patronage, favoritism and corruption, and I for one don’t want my heritage tainted with the greased palms of politicians. Thirdly, the most culturally homogeneous nation on earth is…North Korea. Hardly a ringing endorsement for cultural stasis.
Q. “They take our jobs”
A. Nobody is entitled to a job. Jobs are not allocated to us because we happened to fall out of a vagina on a particular longitude and latitude. And where would you draw the line? I moved from London to Manchester, so did I ‘take’ a job from a local? Should I have been forbidden from leaving London? Why stop there? Should West London have been the limit of my job search? Would Kilburn or Greenwich been off limits?
Secondly, if ‘your’ job can be taken by a somebody who has just arrived, with no connections, no work history, and broken English, that says more about you than it does about the immigrant.
Thirdly, immigrants have (among other things) helped lower living costs; fruit picked by immigrants costs less in the supermarket, plumbers and mechanics are no longer a luxury for the affluent, affordable Eastern European day care workers enable British parents to get back into work, all things that help those on lower incomes.
Q. “We’re a small island, there’s no space”
A. Less than eleven percent of England has been built on, and the percentage is even lower for Britain as a whole. We’re not in danger of sinking just yet. Restrictive planning laws and greenbelt protection (the kind UKIP want to strengthen) is the reason teeming multitudes are crammed into cities while tens of thousands of acres go unused.
Q. “They’re a strain on public services”
A. In many parts of the country, it’s only immigrants that are keeping these services running, particularly nurses and midwives.
Secondly, if you want a pension, you’d better start accepting a lot more young immigrants; sixty years ago the ratio of wage earners to pensioners was 12:1. Today the ratio is 4:1. Within thirty years it’ll be 3:1. Add to that the fact that people are living longer, and you have an unsustainable system.
Children and pensioners are the greatest strain on public services, and its only immigrant labour and taxes that keep the ponzi scheme propped up.
Q. “We need to think about social cohesion”
A. This is generally code for “I only want to live near people who look like me”. Ignoring the fact that more diverse are actually safer than others, one needs to look at the effects of such a bold policy. Brits who’ve emigrated would need to be repatriated. Given that on average these tend to be disproportionately older people, good luck with your public services. And if we’re going to follow this trail of thought to its logical conclusion, the Anglo Saxon populations of the US, Australia, New Zealand and Canada should return to the mother country, for they’re upsetting social cohesion where they are.
This is of course an absurd notion, but no less absurd than thinking that a monochrome, monocultural society would be morally superior. Lets not forget that it was lily-white, Christian Britain that refused to acknowledge rape within marriage, sent children to work in death trap factories, outlawed homosexuality, and turned a blind eye to endemic domestic abuse.
Not without irony, the traditional British values of church, family and thrift and discipline are now the preserve of immigrant communities, Brits having long since abandoned all four.