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How’d your weekend go? Did you spend it with Dad (or at least share a moment with him)?
MrsFrugalSamurai and I certainly did, having dinner with our respective parents as they regaled us with stories from the old country.
I’ve heard many of those stories before of course – yet I often reminisce and wonder what would have happened if we had stayed in the country of my birth.
Certainly life would have been very different.
However as a second generation migrant, myself – like so many others, are now blessed to call Australia home.
It was very different growing up for I remember my early childhood quite vividly, those formative early years in this country.
The frustration at the stumbling blocks of language, the prejudice faced in the classrooms (kids can be really mean) and the fostering of a hybrid identity.
For a time, I couldn’t understand why we had left the warm embrace of my grandparents, the comfort and smells of my homeland.
Almost 30 years later, I can now.
Our parents just want what’s best for their next generation – to have the best start and live a healthy and rewarding life.
That is true for every parent who feels a responsibility for their children.
Immigration is a big topic in politics and the media with the record number of displaced persons, refugees and asylum seekers around the world, seeking shelter and a new home in a better land.
So to take it in context – I’ve found a couple of charts which gives a graphical representation of just why people move when they do:
The Global Peace Index (from the Institute for Peace and Economics) ranks countries from most peaceful to least, with low scores indicating more peaceful and high scores more violence.
Wikipedia states: “The GPI gauges global peace using three broad themes: the level of societal safety and security, the extent of ongoing domestic and international conflict and the degree of militarization. Factors are both internal such as levels of violence and crime within the country and external such as military expenditure and wars”.
As you can see, Australia, New Zealand and Canada are among the most peaceful nations on the planet, and are the most accommodating when it comes to their immigration intake – as reflected by the high levels of multi-culturalism respectively.
Continuing on that theme, I also found this chart on corruption scores from Transparency International. As peace and corruption are often inversely correlated.
As you can see, if you compare the two graphics, the more turbulent a country tends to be, the more difficult and corrupt it is generally speaking.
Which is why many residents of those countries in red and yellow, look for cleaner and more morally responsible countries in green – for a better tomorrow.
But you know immigration is very much a political issue.
For not a day goes by that the media sensationalizes stories about the negative (rarely positive) impacts of immigration, the people and cultures involved.
But politics and the media is far and away not the point of this blog.
I’m just thankful that 25 years ago, Australia opened its doors to my family so we could have a place to call ours.
So that on this Father’s Day – we could have both sets of parents sharing a meal in peace and safety with their son and daughter.
It’s good to not take things for granted sometimes.
And to Mum and Dad, we don’t often say this enough – but we love you. Thank you for doing what you feel is best for the family, and thank you for relocating your entire life so we can have a better future.
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