Media responsibility?

July 1, 2008

I’ve been watching the news on TV these last couple days, for some reason (normally I hardly ever watch TV). Two days in a row they were talking about people smuggling.

How horrible it is that some people make a profit on others’ misery. How good it is when these smugglers are caught. How horrible it is that so many (I think it was 90% of all Iraqis coming to Sweden last year) come to our country in this illegal manner.

I might agree that it is a bit dirty to make a profit on others’ misery. It also means that people who are too poor get stuck where they are. As usual. But…

At no point in these two reports was it mentioned that for a lot of people this is the only way to go anywhere, since the authorities (of Sweden as well as the rest of the EU) have made it so difficult to come here. And at no point is it questioned that the people who were smuggled here should be sent back home. Because they came here illegally.

So we are meant to feel sorry for these people who have paid so much to get here, the only way possible for them, but we shouldn’t feel sorry enough to think that they should be allowed to stay. Or even get the chance to go through the immigration system before they are thrown out.

They only tell us half the story, but maybe people watching will see the bigger picture. Maybe…

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