European immigration policies - No example for America

This is a forum for discussing philosophical theories of government and social structure. It is not a venue for partisan rants or plugging favored candidates.

European immigration policies - No example for America

Postby Polybios87 on October 19th, 2007, 12:51 pm 

I read an article in school about the need to rethink our immigration policies here in Europe.
Illegal immigration is a real issue in Europe as it is in America.
We have many points of entry into Europe, e. g. south-east coast of Italy or the Spanish enclave of Ceuta. So we are supposed to react.

Europes first reaction after WWII was the Geneva refugee convention of 1951. It was originally a cold war instrument on the grounds of economic persecution. The convention gave us an ideological advantage during the cold war, because we supported refugees of the former Soviet Union.
After the break-up of the Soviet Union and the disintegration of Yugoslavia we faced the issue of hundreds of thousands asylum seekers who applied to immigrate. The turmoil of the 1990s, when more than 4m people asked for asylum in western Europe, has raised beyond an acceptable level.

Europes governments don`t like this development. So they implemented restrictive immigration policies. Germany ended long-term labour intakes from Turkey in the early 1970s and GB was in the countdown to the Commonwealth Immigrants Act of 1962, which stopped the first wave of immigration in the UK.
But unintendend effects occured. In Germany more immigrants from Turkey immigrated to Germany -family reunions-. The figures of immigration in Britain doubled.

I think that the european governments didn`t keep in mind that we need immigration. Why?

1. Economic need for immigration:
Firstly EU-countries could save on development aid. Secondly our population projections aren`t very well. There is an aging population and an continuing fall in our birth-rates. Consequence: Immigration is needed to keep the ratio of working to non-working population constant. Furthermore we need immigration to solve our crisis in pension fundings.

2. Moral case for immigration:
2.1. Remittances from asylum seekers to their families hit the mark better and are less likely to be plundered by corrupt governments than development aid.
2.2. We have a free-flow of capital and goods. Human beings should be allowed to follow.
2.3. Outside the wealthy economies there is a feeling that there`s a global economic apartheid. The poor regarded the borders of wealthy states as obstacles to safety and prosperity.

In addition Europe has similiar to America two choices:
The first option is a massive and costly entrenchment of Europe`s borders as it is in America or we have to implement more liberal immigration policies.

I believe that if America would rethink their immigration policies they will benefit in many forms:
more innovation, prosperity, knowledge and multi-cultural understandings.

More liberal immigration policies are needed in order to preserve our economic prosperity and the prosperity of knowledge.

What do you think? Are the western ways of handling immigration issues obsolete?
Forum Neophyte
Posts: 37
Joined: 19 Oct 2007

Postby Awathorn on November 22nd, 2007, 6:42 am 


look what is going on all over the Europe. Generations of children or grandchildren of immigrants who came to Europe in decades after WWII lives in countries to which they have no cultural ties. Their parents of grandparents came to Europe with knowledge of reality of their former homelands and I agree that they worked hard and helped Europe a lot but now we have huge communities of people with no cultural roots, they were born here but they are still strangers. This leads to Paris riots, London or Madrid terrorist attacks, huge criminality in those communities etc. Free or easy immigration is dangerous. We have to tighten the immigration rules, that is my opinion. Let´s welcome people who are interested in working here, who understand that they will have to accept our laws, cultural standards, language - with NO exceptions. These people can give much to our society. But reality is that majority of immigrants have no knowledge about our society, they have no idea what it looks like here and what they have to do if they want to live on the same standard as we are. Only those who will be able to prove all these things can be allowed to became Europeans. Sounds hard? Maybe it is, but in my opinion, it is neessary.
Forum Neophyte
Posts: 10
Joined: 16 Nov 2007
Location: Prague, Czech Republic

Postby Polybios87 on December 20th, 2007, 11:15 am 

To Awarthon:

Thanks a lot for your reply.
You belive that European governments have to tighten their rules in hindsight of immigration.
As I wrote in my first feature I think that strict regulation rules can endanger the stability and the security of Europe.
You mentioned negative influences like terrorism. I`m also concering about incedents of terror or disorder here in Europe. But I believe that these negative influences get an higher potential on the people of an poor country if we are not ready to share our wealth and prosperity.
So if we embrace the chance of a multi-cultural society and set more liberal immigration laws then we can be sure that we:

firstly: fully understand what democracy and the responsibility of wealth really means and
secondly: we can keep the possibilty of violence, riots and even terrorism on a low level.

Of course you´re right that we have ruthless incedents of disorder (France; as you mentioned) but I think thats the best example that there is a need to share our wealth with the immigrants.
Forum Neophyte
Posts: 37
Joined: 19 Oct 2007

Return to Political Theory

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests