Refugees Are Welcome – or Aren’t They?

In cozy atmosphere at the Ruhr Universität Bochum the difficult refugee topic is discussed.

If there was this one solution, we had already chosen it.

One lonely guy is sitting on a chair at a little stage. At first he speaks tentatively. Nobody else is talking at the KulturCafé of the Ruhr-University Bochum. Everyone wants to hear what he has to say. Because this is a difficult subject. Not only for Germany, but for all countries that are involved. When we think of the refugee situation there is not such easy judgement. It is a question of moral, politics and decisions.

When it comes to the most current situation – or should we call it even crisis? – it is all about decision making. What are we aiming for? Is there an European vision? This is what his speech is all about since every newspaper is reporting about all the different options, the pros and contras concerning so many foreign people coming to ‘our’ country we didn’t even ask for. There are voices about how we could be capable of offering places to stay, voices worrying about how terrorism could easily increase and voices asking how to provide such an amount of new jobs.

Long Pause. Still silence. And then he addresses directly the audience. Now he raises his tone. These are not the right questions; these are facts we have to face. Because this situation is not a question anymore. People who have fled from their home countries taking the dangerous, sometimes perilous, journey and hoping for shelter are already here. They were pushed to leave forced by war and destruction, because they have no choice to stay. Especially those who lost their homes. They have no livelihood anymore even being set to get killed. Most families got divided, people are hopeless and in need of help.

For that reason we cannot just close our eyes. We have to face a change. Although the first followed Merkel-optimism is gone, the change is unpreventable. Europeans don’t have the faith to have the strength to be able to deal with the amount of refugees. But instead of aiming for a new political direction for or against refugees, there is the only way of doing it with them.

This is the key message I took home that night. There were a lot of different topics discussed as for example how the German government grants asylum or if the whole situation is a method of destabilization. For a normal citizen it’s maybe important to consider the political views, to create an own opinion and to see that there is not only that one solution. But what even matters the most is that you cannot just send refugees away again, that there is a majority of people who are begging for help and who would do everything to be part of our nation.

As there are diverse cultural backgrounds it is not said to be easy, but integration is not impossible. If everyone works together, we can find our way back to be a nation again. We have to look at the perspectives and advantages, because the problems are evident – now we have to deal with them.

Written by Laura

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