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The Flag of the World

-G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

This here blog is a glimpse or two or three at the condition of the 'fortress of our family' through the eyes Timothy Goddard, a Christian writer with an unhealthy interest in politics living in the Puget Sound area.

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Monday, March 10, 2003

 

"I think my country is where I am going."
Via the newly expanded Brothers Judd comes this New York Times article on the Somali Bantu refugees on their way to America.

In 1999, the United States determined that the Somali Bantu tribe was a persecuted group eligible for resettlement. The number of African refugees approved for admission in the United States surged from 3,318 in 1990 to 20,084 a decade later as the cold war ended and American officials focused on assisting refugees beyond those fleeing Communist countries.

"I don't think Somalia is my country because we Somali Bantus have seen our people treated like donkeys there," said Fatuma Abdekadir, 20, who was waiting for her class to start. "I think my country is where I am going.

"There, there is peace. Nobody can treat you badly. Nobody can come into your house and beat you."
There will, of course, be those who dismiss the optimism of these people as bred from naivite and inexperience. In fact, the article itself goes on to make the claim that "these people know little of racism [or] poverty." This is the same article that just finished explaining how the Bantu were subjected to overt racism by the lighter skinned Somalis, were enslaved for year, and are still called "slave people" today, that just finished explaining that they have never flushed a toilet or turned on a light switch in in their lives. And they know "little" of racism and poverty?

I see no naitive in these people's optimism--I see hope, and a hope based in the reality that, hey, it's better here. And I, for one, am glad to have them. Welcome, friends.
UPDATE: OxBlog has a little information on who, exactly helps out with this sort of thing, which you (yes, you) could get involved in. It sounds like something I'd like to do some day.
Agree, disagree, have more information on the topic? Please, feel free to leave a comment. No profanity!
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