What would I hope to find if it was me?

The European countries are being overwhelmed with refugees from the middle east: Syria, Lebanon all the war zones. Places far enough away that we can pretend that we can distance ourselves: from the pain, the suffering, the fear.

But now it is all being brought right to our doorstep.

There is now a very definite refugee problem. But what is the actual issue here?

There are a lot of refugees, that is certain. That kind of number puts a strain on any country that opens their borders to help. Housing issues, labor considerations, cultural differences. All of them necessitate careful consideration and naturally lots of work and considerable funds.

As in many countries the arrival of the refugees here is met with mixed feelings by the original inhabitants. Some welcome them, Others are afraid for their jobs, for long waits for reasonable housing if the refugees are given priorities over them, maybe even afraid for their security, especially after the great number of assaults on women in Germany around New Year.

But I often wonder if that is the real problem.

Why are we so protective of what we have. Is it because we are afraid that someone else will take it from us? Or is it because we don’t want to be confronted with what could just as easily have been our life.

No body asked to be born in Syria. None of the refugees asked to be raised in a war zone. None of them requested the tyranny or terrorism. They just had bad luck. Bad luck to be born in the wrong place at the wrong time.

It could just as easily have been us.

It could have been me.

The refugees come here for a reason.

Sure there are economical refugees, But those are not the subject of this blog. I’m talking about the people who leave everything they know, everything they had, everyone they love because they fear for their lives. People who risk the hazardous crossing of the Mediterrannian sea, at the mercy of human traffickers. People who risk everything.

For me personally there are only a few questions that really matter when debating my own attitude towards the refugees:

What would I do if that was my mother sitting in the boat trying to reach safety, wondering if she had done the right thing to flee our only home? The only life she and her children have ever known.

How would I feel if it was my child that didn’t survived the trip? If it was my fault?

What would I hope to find if it was me?