Invisible Refugees

The article “On Frequent Flyers and Boat People: Notes on Europe, Crisis, and Human Mobility” draws attention to the growing divide between displaced peoples and “frequent flyers.” In many cases, rather than addressing the issue as a humanitarian one, the problem is addressed in terms of how lucrative certain decisions will be. The ability to enter a country may be contingent one’s capacity to work. The writer, Francesco Vacchiano, ridicules the priorities and paradoxical nature rich meeting poor. The end result is the antiquated rich getting richer and poor getting poorer.

Something that stood out to me in this article was the interaction between the tourists and unnoticed refugees. The divide between displaced peoples and the countries they are fleeing seems to create an invisibility complex. The problem is overt, and yet people are overlooked and ignored. Much like the tourists on the beach, countries are taking the same approach to refugees by turning the other way rather than addressing the crux of the problem. This is demonstrated in the article when countries invest money into border control under the guise of a humanitarian act instead of diverting resources to where they are most needed. On the world stage, it seems like it is easier to sweep the global crisis under the carpet or look the other way like the tourists on the beach. In order to create real change the problem cannot be ignored. This requires a major shift in in priorities from a temporary fix to a permanent solution.