This is the letter I wrote to Mark Butler and I doubt it will get much of a response, but it felt great to hit…submit.
The Hon Mark Butler MP
Electoral Division of Port Adelaide
PO Box 6022
House of Representatives
Canberra ACT 2600
Dear Mr Butler
As a voting member of the Port Adelaide electorate I wish to voice my ongoing concerns and dismay at the treatment of asylum seekers. I respectfully ask that you please voice this concern to all who are influential in making decisions about the ways Australia will be processing asylum seekers now that the High Court has ruled that offshore processing may be illegal, or contrary to Human rights legislation.
The Howard government’s pacific solution was inhumane and general approach to asylum seekers has peddled fear through the media and shamelessly harnessed Islamaphobia to meet it’s own re-election ends and satisfy conservative factions. It is the single most important reason I voted for Labour. Tony Abbot’s ridiculous “stop the boats” ads infuriated me with their dumbing down and misinformation regarding the number of asylum seekers.
As a teacher I asked my year 6 students, how do most asylum seekers get to Australia? They unanimously said by boat, yet very few arrive this way. When I asked if they thought it was illegal to seek asylum, 80% of them said that “yes” they thought it was illegal. This is one small anecdotal piece of evidence at the successful campaign of misinformation led by the Liberal party through the media. Young minds being influenced by racist propaganda.
I implore you to present a case for processing asylum seekers in Australia. It makes more sense for humanitarian reasons and on economic grounds as many people believe it would be much cheaper. People smugglers need to be stopped but off shore processing is not the answer.
Please, please consider voicing my views in parliament. I have faith in Australian compassion and do not believe I am a lone voice in the wilderness.
TalkyChalky ( I sent my real name!!)