Tuesday, May 20, 2008
Here's a misguided attempt at rebranding, based on the quasi-magical notion that changing the name will change the thing itself. As the man says, 'There is a disconnection in the public mind between sanctuary and perception of asylum seekers.' Quite so, and there will be even more of a disconnection when you start calling them 'sanctuary seekers'. Asylum is indeed the wrong word, because it no longer reflects the reality of mass migration from the earth's many and various hellholes in search of a better life. There is, in effect, little or no distinction to be usefully made between economic migrants and 'asylum seekers' - a term we rarely heard until tighter immigration laws closed other routes in and cheap jet travel and the growth of people trafficking brought in new realities. 'Asylum' is a word - and a concept - more suited to the 19th century, and sooner or later developed nations will, I fear, have to opt out it altogether.
Posted by Nige at 2:22 pm