Bartlett's Bizarre Bazaar

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Tuesday, August 31, 2004



I think that this is a story worth spreading, empirical ammunition to shoot down racists and xenophobes. The United Nation High Commission on Refugees has reported that the number of applications for asylum in the industrialised world has fallen to its lowest levels since 1987. Of this industrialised world, the richest and most powerful nations on Earth, Britain is third in the table, behind France and the United States.

I would write more, but to do this story justice and to give proper vent to my anger – carefully channelled into my writing – I would need a bit more time than I have available at the moment. The ideologues of small-minded, ignorant and intolerant nationalism deserve more than ten minutes of hasty tapping on a keyboard late at night. They prove themselves to be masters of the exaggeration and the lie, and for what purpose? To make people hate?

One thing I will say, however, is that falling to third place in the table of applications is not an achievement. I hope that one day, the nation that I am a part of is a decent, tolerant nation, the first nation that persecuted people turned to for refuge.

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