The Issue of Immigration From a Traveler's Perspective: Here's What I Have Seen... by Sheri B Doyle
Traveling around the world has exposed me to many different people, cultures and circumstances. While I find differences in each place I travel, I find more similarities. We want the same things: happiness, love, friendship and joy. That may look different to each of us but it is the same desire. Parents are also the same. They want food for their children, water, shelter, love and safety.
It is hard to imagine a life without opportunity, education or systems for support should something go wrong. For us, accepting that in this day and age people don’t have access to basic necessities like water, food or electricity, let alone police protection, is almost impossible.
- I have seen children so poor the shacks they live in don’t have addresses.
- I have seen children with no clothes.
- I have seen children run out of drinking water if there wasn't enough rain.
- I have seen children physically abused and the parents or teachers had nowhere to turn for help.
- I have seen children dig in trashcans for food while walking barefoot in the streets because they have no shoes.
This is what we can see as we pass quickly through a country – we can’t see the deep struggles of people and societies.
The weight of immigration is difficult for many countries. It can be unbearable to provide resources and opportunities to all who seek it. Yet the one thing we can and should do is face each person with the compassion of knowing they are seeking a better life, one we have been lucky enough to be born into. They are seeking the things we take for granted as basic rights.
It is with compassion we can help them to change their countries so they can live safely. It is with compassion that even if we have to turn them away we can still allow them to feel human, to feel heard, to feel loved and to feel seen.