Love it. You make really good points.
“the drownings recently have all occurred after turn backs.”
To me as you pointed out I think this is due more to a lack of data than a lack of occurrence. It just doesn’t make sense how they could come all the way from Sudan then Indonesia and not drown, but on the way back a lot of them do. Ultimately it’s a dangerous trek both ways and shouldn’t be encouraged either way.
“I guess my other concern is that there really aren’t many — if any — safe places to return these asylum seekers to.”
And this is where I hope we can find more agreement. I think this is where Australia should be putting more of its resources into. To me I find it an interesting dichotomy here in America where the left will often argue for open-borders and then critique U.S. foreign intervention. In other words, the strategy seems to be… we won’t help you fix your problems but we welcome you to bring them here.
The world is far too interconnected. We can’t simply hide behind our oceans. We must go out first with an open-hand, and then if needed a closed fist, to bring peace and prosperity to the world. We must proceed cautiously. I don’t for example want to remake the world in the western image (I believe strongly in preserving traditional cultures), but I think there needs to be a floor that is set for what the world considers morally acceptable behavior. Moral relativism has its limits. Throughout the world murder, rape, pedophile, terrorism should be banned.
“Honestly, this is where emotion begins to trump it for me — I figure if they’re already here, just accommodate them.”
I feel you man. I too wish to create a better world.
Sometimes we let the story of a tragic few dictate our policy at the expense of the masses.
For example, in the United States it is in fact our relatively open southern border that has allowed the drug cartels to get so much money because of the financial power of the American consumer. These cartels then have so much more money then their own governments that they can then corrupt the corruptible and kill the uncompromising thereby creating a perpetual cycle of people fleeing from the poverty and violence and then American democrats welcome these refugees with open arms trying to claim the moral high ground as they become undocumented workers having to spend their lives working in harsh living conditions, in crowded houses, with below minimum wage pay, often far away from their family.
In the case of Australia I don’t think you guys have a role in the instability of those regions you mentioned so I digressed there a bit, but I do sense those who argue most passionately for refugees tend to argue against interventionism/preventionism. Why not put more money into building better camps/facilities/asylums in the refugee home countries? It would actually save Australia money rather than trying to integrate them all into Australian society, often against their will because many of them didn’t come to Australia to be integrated. And it would save far more lives by working to fix the root problem of instability by creating a spot of stability close to home for these refugees to look to as an example of hope.