A state must protect its citizens

The aftermath of the terrorist atrocity in Nice (AP)
The aftermath of the terrorist atrocity in Nice (AP)

When debates arise revolving around refugees and asylum seekers, a swift reactionary response often follows.

Anyone who hints that immigration should be restricted, or that refugees should be screened before entry, are dubbed racists and xenophobic. Anyone who suggests that some of these refugees should undergo some form of monitoring is deemed to be a seething Nazi in disguise. It is all well and good for these reactionaries to state such things when they are far detached from the situation, however the reality of being negligent when it comes to immigration is slowly emerging across Europe.

Over the last few months, several terrorist attacks have struck France, Belgium and now Germany. There is no doubt that more will soon follow. From these attacks, we know that several came to Europe via flawed immigration policy.

The latest example of this is the attack that occurred in Germany, where a Syrian refugee detonated an explosive device outside a bar. A few days before that, an Afghan refugee slaughtered an innocent woman with a machete. When countries fail to do their utmost to truly protect their citizens, this sort of chaos is bound to follow. The European states must strictly contain their borders, and allow refugees in only after full and detailed background checks. This is the only way to be both compassionate towards those actually needing asylum and safety, and protecting the citizens of Europe from radical Islamists.

While it is an inevitability that the choir shouting ‘racist’, ‘xenophobe’ and ‘Nazi’ will appear on the stage again if such restrictions were enacted, but it is time for the governments of Europe to ignore such childish whining. The purpose of the state is to protect it’s citizens lives. These past few months have shown that Europe has been failing in this regards.

Changes must be made in order to save lives. And if this offends bleeding hearts in their posh cafes and university classrooms, so be it. It is better to be safe than sorry. It is better to be alive than dead.

Harold Ohayon, Belfast