Tomorrow there are rallies across the country taking place in support of bringing the refugees languishing on Manus Island and Nauru to Australia. PNG’s Supreme Court decided in April that the detention on Manus is unlawful and that the detention centre would have to close. It’s been four months and still the issue is being treated like a political football between the PNG and Australian governments, not to mention the Australian Opposition and other parties. What’s more, the end of August marks fifteen years since the Tampa affair.
I hope something changes soon, though i’m not holding my breath. It gets tiring doing the same things over and over, just to try and shift the “decency levels”a little. Right now, the politics of fear dominate. But the politics of decency are rising in some quarters. Activists need to take heart and try not to burn out as we speak out again and again.
Politician need to have the political courage to generate the will to do more – to bring them here and let them stay. Some do have that courage. Others are gaining it bit by bit, or are at least open to decency’s possibility. I’m not wasting my breath on the hard-hearted xenophobes who aren’t even that.
We can give support through signing the petition below and then turning up to a rally tomorrow. Come on Australia – let’s show the politicians how much we want the refugees (most of the men on Manus have been found to be genuine refugees). I’ll see you there.
Petition link from GetUp!: https://www.getup.org.au/campaigns/refugees/bringthemhere/we-say-bringthemhere
Darwin (28th due to NT election)