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According to the UN, migration should be a human right

 
icehorse
 
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icehorse
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02 December 2018 09:06
 

The UN Global Compact for Migration asserts that migration should be a human right. This seems like a terrifying idea.

UN Global Compact for Migration

 
 
mapadofu
 
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mapadofu
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02 December 2018 11:21
 

Isn’t this the same thing you posted about before?

The one where the UN, in a no -binding manner, espouses the idea that refugees should have the relevant kinds of due process rights, in line with the idea of universal human rights.

 
hannahtoo
 
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hannahtoo
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02 December 2018 16:09
 

The document states:
This Global Compact recognizes that safe, orderly and regular migration works for all when it takes place in a wellinformed,
planned and consensual manner. Migration should never be an act of desperation. When it is, we must
cooperate to respond to the needs of migrants in situations of vulnerability, and address the respective challenges.
We must work together to create conditions that allow communities and individuals to live in safety and dignity in
their own countries. We must save lives and keep migrants out of harm’s way. We must empower migrants to
become full members of our societies, highlight their positive contributions, and promote inclusion and social
cohesion. We must generate greater predictability and certainty for States, communities and migrants alike. To
achieve this, we commit to facilitate and ensure safe, orderly and regular migration for the benefit of all.

I guess the question is whether people have the human right to seek safe haven when their lives are in danger.  Like the Syrians who were being gassed to death in a war zone.  You think not?

 
icehorse
 
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02 December 2018 16:37
 
hannahtoo - 02 December 2018 04:09 PM

The document states:
This Global Compact recognizes that safe, orderly and regular migration works for all when it takes place in a wellinformed,
planned and consensual manner. Migration should never be an act of desperation. When it is, we must
cooperate to respond to the needs of migrants in situations of vulnerability, and address the respective challenges.
We must work together to create conditions that allow communities and individuals to live in safety and dignity in
their own countries. We must save lives and keep migrants out of harm’s way. We must empower migrants to
become full members of our societies, highlight their positive contributions, and promote inclusion and social
cohesion. We must generate greater predictability and certainty for States, communities and migrants alike. To
achieve this, we commit to facilitate and ensure safe, orderly and regular migration for the benefit of all.

I guess the question is whether people have the human right to seek safe haven when their lives are in danger.  Like the Syrians who were being gassed to death in a war zone.  You think not?

A couple of important distinctions here:

- Relatively speaking the number of true refugees from war is tiny compared to the number of economic migrants. It’s important not to lump those two groups together.
- The UN Compact is about migration.

Now do you think that migration is a human right? Above any beyond the world’s immigration laws that have been in effect for decades? If so, what degree of free migration do you support? Should all nations open up their borders? Let’s walk down the line to smaller and smaller entities. Should all the states within a country open their borders? Should all cities? How about your house? Should you be forced to open your house to however many random strangers are in economic need?

Next, mass migration doesn’t work from the perspective of math, and it sidesteps the real issue of making as much of the planet as possible fertile and hospitable. Wouldn’t we be far better off AND far more compassionate if we helped people in the 3rd world turn their own countries into thriving, safe, sustainable, healthy spaces?

map - As for how much teeth this compact has, the real point (to me), is that it’s a step towards normalizing some very bad ideas.

 
 
mapadofu
 
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mapadofu
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02 December 2018 18:21
 

Sorry if this derails.  Is there a natural law that binds people to the land of their origin?

 
icehorse
 
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02 December 2018 18:31
 
mapadofu - 02 December 2018 06:21 PM

Sorry if this derails.  Is there a natural law that binds people to the land of their origin?

In this context, what’s a natural law? Like it’s in our DNA?

 
 
mapadofu
 
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mapadofu
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02 December 2018 18:50
 

Ok, I skipped over this since it is sort of its own topic, but here goes.

What is your conception of human rights?

I figure that we,  inc. hanna, could easily talk past one another unless we go through the tedious effort of being clear on what we mean by things.  I used “natural law” to try to convey the converse of my (possibly somewhat idiosyncratic) interpretation of “human right”.

 
icehorse
 
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02 December 2018 18:54
 
mapadofu - 02 December 2018 06:50 PM

Ok, I skipped over this since it is sort of its own topic, but here goes.

What is your conception of human rights?

I figure that we,  inc. hanna, could easily talk past one another unless we go through the tedious effort of being clear on what we mean by things.  I used “natural law” to try to convey the converse of my (possibly somewhat idiosyncratic) interpretation of “human right”.

Fair question. I frequently mention the Universal Declaration of Human rights (UDHR) as my baseline, and as an example of a good baseline of human rights.

 
 
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hannahtoo
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03 December 2018 07:47
 

Mapadofu brings up an interesting point.  What sort of responsibility do each of us bear to help one another?  And how much of this is tied to where we were born?

Let’s look at a more local example.  When fires or floods or windstorms wipe out part of a city in the US, the residents evacuate.  Government sets up shelters, or evacuees go to stay with family.  For a time, they live on their savings, charity, and government support.  Eventually, they are expected to rebuild or to relocate to new permanent homes, jobs, and schools.  They wouldn’t be expected to stay in makeshift shelters for years, nor would their relatives expect them to live with them forever after.  Yet they wouldn’t have doors slammed in their faces right after a disaster.

What about non-local situations, termed migration?  Ideal would be for the home of origin to be made more livable, with rebuilding after a natural disaster, for example.  But if this is not the case, then perhaps resettlement could be done in a more pro-active and organized fashion than it is today.  In the US, perhaps communities that welcome and need immigrants could be self-identified ahead of time, and procedures set up to integrate the newcomers.  Of course, there would need to be vetting, to be sure immigrants were not dangerous criminals.  The migrants could have an expectation of what the conditions would be like—perhaps group or multi-family housing to start, and entry level jobs, along with language and culture training.  (I got this idea from reading about how S. Korea integrates immigrants.)  In time, immigrants provided with adequate pay and education could work their way into other jobs. 

It seems odd to me to read about the need for agricultural, construction, and service industry workers in the US, yet potential workers are being labeled as an “invasion.”  By the same token, I wish Central American immigrants could know of more options for relocation than just the US. 

Increased immigration is the new normal.  Either we build huge walls and post a continual guard force, using rubber bullets and tear gas, or we accept the challenge of dealing with migrants in a more orderly fashion. 

Ideally, migration options would be more coordinated and integrated on an international basis.  Actually, this is happening to some extent now.  The current National Geographic magazine has an article on the Philippines, which now has 10 million workers overseas (1/10 of their population) to help support their families.  The nation trains their young people in careers that are needed all over the world, and they are taught foreign languages: 

Government agencies were founded to deal with the migration of registered workers, negotiate international labor terms, and rescue workers when a diplomatic row flares up or a war breaks out…Filipinos are domestic workers in Angola and construction workers in Japan.  They staff the oil fields of Libya and are nannies to families in Hong Kong.  They sing on the stages of far-flung provinces in China and help run hotels in the Middle East.  A quarter of the world’s seafarers are Filipino.

It’s not an ideal lifestyle for these workers, but they choose it over remaining in poverty.  They send money back home to raise their families’ standard of living.  So countries can help migrants at both ends—sending and receiving. 

Yes, there is and will continue to be cultural disruption due to immigration.  But is this much different from diasporas of the past?  Or even from racial integration of cities and suburban areas within the US?

 
icehorse
 
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03 December 2018 09:41
 

hannah - mostly agreed, but of course I have a little pushback wink

hannah said:

Mapadofu brings up an interesting point.  What sort of responsibility do each of us bear to help one another?  And how much of this is tied to where we were born?

I would guess that we’d all agree that we have ethical, moral, compassionate reasons to help one another. But barring that, even if you’re a heartless bastard of a businessman, it makes sense in the long run for you to help foster a financially secure population. (A point that oligarchs don’t seem to get.)

To me there are three distinct situations that often get conflated, and shouldn’t:

1 - Mutually beneficial and orderly migration.
2 - Migration that feels more like an invasion.
3 - Legitimate refugees.

In this thread it’s #2 that I’m focused on. I’m suspicious of the UN’s compact, in terms of #2. It feels to me that the UN is trying to jam multi-culturalism and some sort of weakened borders down our throats. Even though the compact pays lip service to national autonomy, I’m still suspicious.

To me, if our goal is maximize well-being across the planet, then I don’t the UN is taking a good course here. I think we should resist normalizing #2 and improve our projects that help impoverished people “in place”.

 
 
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03 December 2018 10:02
 
icehorse - 03 December 2018 09:41 AM

hannah - mostly agreed, but of course I have a little pushback wink

hannah said:

Mapadofu brings up an interesting point.  What sort of responsibility do each of us bear to help one another?  And how much of this is tied to where we were born?

I would guess that we’d all agree that we have ethical, moral, compassionate reasons to help one another. But barring that, even if you’re a heartless bastard of a businessman, it makes sense in the long run for you to help foster a financially secure population. (A point that oligarchs don’t seem to get.)

To me there are three distinct situations that often get conflated, and shouldn’t:

1 - Mutually beneficial and orderly migration.
2 - Migration that feels more like an invasion.
3 - Legitimate refugees.

In this thread it’s #2 that I’m focused on. I’m suspicious of the UN’s compact, in terms of #2. It feels to me that the UN is trying to jam multi-culturalism and some sort of weakened borders down our throats. Even though the compact pays lip service to national autonomy, I’m still suspicious.

To me, if our goal is maximize well-being across the planet, then I don’t the UN is taking a good course here. I think we should resist normalizing #2 and improve our projects that help impoverished people “in place”.

What if they can’t be helped in place—as in a protracted war or environmental disaster?

I wonder if a more globalized, practical system of immigration were established, could the feeling of “invasion” be avoided?  Again, since the US needs workers, why are we shunning them?  Obviously, there is a political motive to rally Trump supporters by creating a faux-threat, instead of rational policy.

At any rate, with the world on the verge of wide-spread environmental changes, we’re going to have to find a way to accept transformations of our communities.  Rather than saying, “No, I demand to maintain the status quo,” we must accept the inevitable.  This doesn’t mean welcoming dangerous criminals or condoning human rights abuses.  But the complexion of our communities is bound to change.  And we’ll need to learn to live together.  Accept the challenge and the hard work.  Otherwise we’re headed for more walls and more guards and more violence.

 
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mapadofu
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03 December 2018 12:06
 

As we discussed in another thread, the bulk of the actual UN resolution is on establishing frameworks to realize #1.

One thing I think we should keep in mind is the distinction between the phrase “a right of migration” from “[the] rights of migrants”.  What I remember from reading the UN resolution is that it was about the latter, not the former.

I interpret this resolution as the UN’s attempt to try to move closer to a sensible transnational migration policy with the kind of features you (Hanna) have been laying out,

[ Edited: 03 December 2018 12:12 by mapadofu]
 
icehorse
 
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03 December 2018 13:22
 

Hannah, I numbered your points:

1 - What if they can’t be helped in place—as in a protracted war or environmental disaster?

2 - I wonder if a more globalized, practical system of immigration were established, could the feeling of “invasion” be avoided?  Again, since the US needs workers, why are we shunning them?  Obviously, there is a political motive to rally Trump supporters by creating a faux-threat, instead of rational policy.

3 - At any rate, with the world on the verge of wide-spread environmental changes, we’re going to have to find a way to accept transformations of our communities.  Rather than saying, “No, I demand to maintain the status quo,” we must accept the inevitable.  This doesn’t mean welcoming dangerous criminals or condoning human rights abuses.  But the complexion of our communities is bound to change.  And we’ll need to learn to live together.  Accept the challenge and the hard work.  Otherwise we’re headed for more walls and more guards and more violence.

1 - well your #1 is I think my #3 from earlier - statistically, sometimes there really are true refugees. But on the scale of a BILLION potential migrants, they’re not that common.

2 - I think we’d have to make distinctions. Some migrants have core values that are more or less consistent with the core values of the host country. Other migrants have core values that are in stark contrast. Clearly that makes a difference. lots more we could say on this question, but the other point is: in who’s backyard do we house them?

3 - This seems like a recipe for disaster. I would say that if we were really honest about what this would entail, we’d discover that “in place” solutions would actually be cheaper and more compassionate.

 
 
icehorse
 
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03 December 2018 13:25
 
mapadofu - 03 December 2018 12:06 PM

As we discussed in another thread, the bulk of the actual UN resolution is on establishing frameworks to realize #1.

One thing I think we should keep in mind is the distinction between the phrase “a right of migration” from “[the] rights of migrants”.  What I remember from reading the UN resolution is that it was about the latter, not the former.

I interpret this resolution as the UN’s attempt to try to move closer to a sensible transnational migration policy with the kind of features you (Hanna) have been laying out,

I find the UN Compact to be written in a way I find suspicious. On the surface I think your distinction is what “most” of the document says. But it’s vague or obtuse at key points, and my gut is that it’s a first step towards “a right of migration”.

 
 
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hannahtoo
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03 December 2018 15:00
 

Again, more migration and mixing is in-ev-i-ta-ble.  And yes, it is going to cause disruption.  Immigrants may not be living literally in my backyard, but their children will be going to school with my grandchildren.  Our composite culture will change.  It can turn out OK if we commit to making it work.  There are a couple of billion too many people in the world right now, and they’re not all going to stay put.  Yes, try to help people improve their homelands.  But still people will migrate. 

You know what would be a disaster?  If wealthy, stable countries stopped all in-migration and holed up, as the rest of the world roiled with environmental disasters and unrest.  Every-country-for-itself would turn out to be less for everyone, since we really, truly are interdependent. 

 
icehorse
 
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03 December 2018 16:14
 
hannahtoo - 03 December 2018 03:00 PM

Again, more migration and mixing is in-ev-i-ta-ble.  And yes, it is going to cause disruption.  Immigrants may not be living literally in my backyard, but their children will be going to school with my grandchildren.  Our composite culture will change.  It can turn out OK if we commit to making it work.  There are a couple of billion too many people in the world right now, and they’re not all going to stay put.  Yes, try to help people improve their homelands.  But still people will migrate. 

You know what would be a disaster?  If wealthy, stable countries stopped all in-migration and holed up, as the rest of the world roiled with environmental disasters and unrest.  Every-country-for-itself would turn out to be less for everyone, since we really, truly are interdependent.

I keep coming back to values. For example, I think that the values in Mexico’s culture are compatible with ours. I do not think that the core values that the wave of Muslim migrants brings to Europe are compatible. A simplification to be sure.

 
 
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