We struggle to exist…
Posted by clandestina on 20 March 2009
Without for a moment ovelooking the ways anniversaries become official celebrations, and the purposes they serve as such, still, we would like to stick with the 21st March as a reminder of the fact that racism and discrimination of all sorts are still part of our everyday life, of “our” civilisation. We as immigrants know very well this side of everyday life, us being the prime and most vulnerable victims of racism and discrimination. Unfortunately, the situation in the “civilized” and “democratic” Europe is bound to go worse, as the “Pact on Immigration and Asylum” endorsed by the European Union confirms. This pact puts an end to the relatively relaxed current immigration policy some European States had been implementing. As for the situation in Greece, it is difficult to conceive a more racist, inhuman, exploitative and predatory migration policy from the one already in force. One thing is certain: this Pact – and the many more to follow -, and the so-called policy of controlled immigration (which relates to nothing but the fact that the Europeans need us, not only as cheap labor but also as “heirs”, for the continuity of the European civilization) will burden even more our situation and make the entry and stay in Europe even more difficult.
There is no doubt that the situation immigrants and refugees in Greece face is the outcome of both the policies of the Greek state and its governments, and of the attitudes of large parts of the Greek society.
Unfortunately, almost all of us immigrants, we have been accepting without much resistance the fate imposed to us. Contrary to this chronic apathy and fatalism, the events of last December and the incredible participation of immigrants in them showed that we have accumulated much anger; so much of it, that a single spark is enough to make us overcome our fears and take to the streets to fight for our lives, which is property of no State, no government, no Greece. And how could it be otherwise? How can one not be angry, after having been ripped off in the most brazen manner, by means of every legal trick devisable? How can one not be angry when exploited in the most inhumane ways, from being forced to work on a piece of bread, to having his or her life threatened when reacting to this, as in the case of Konstantina Kuneva? How can one not be angry when devalued and treated as human garbage, when bludgeoned, imprisoned, and deported? How can one not be angry when he or she has seen the face of death at the border, within Police stations, at the sea? Whenever injustice destroys lives, the first, the easy, the negligible victims are us; this is why it is our responsibility to assume a prime part in the fight against oppression and exploitation as well.
Let us raise our voice, not only on the 21st of March, but every day and from whatever position we are, and in whatever way we can, to protest against this condition that holds us hostages, against the status of contemporary slaves we have been forced into. Let us state our opposition to racism and to any sort of discrimination. All together, immigrants and refugees, it is our responsibility to be the first to fight, because this struggle is the struggle for our existence, the struggle for our own life.
Group of Migrants and Refugees