What is a state?
We all currently live in states. Most support the presence of states. This is the part in the dictionary definition that will be discussed (but please feel free to click this, read the entire definition and return)
a : a politically organized body of people usually occupying a definite territory; especially : one that is sovereign
b : the political organization of such a body of people
c : a government or politically organized society having a particular character <a police state> <the welfare state>
Facebook has a trending news topic feed. Yesterday the topic that Kenya has begun the process to close the Dadaab and Kakuma camps was on it. These are part of a complex of camps of 500,000 to over 600,000 people, mostly from Somalia and South Sudan. These camps were initiated in 1992 at the onset of the civil war in Somalia and have been growing for decades.
I no longer think common sense is common, more accurately that which is commonly know to any one person is surely not common. It then follows that I do not know what you know so rather than a heated diatribe, I thought it would be best to sit on my reaction for a day and in more composed manner share this post with you.
There were the expected comments from people suggesting that Kenya need only absorb those in the camps. All those born in the camp should be given citizenship and welcomed. Birthright Citizenship. Now most posters were likely from the Americas, so it is understandable that they may consider this a common practice. Most of the world does not. Likely in no small part due to the populations with historically indigenous ties to their lands that the ‘New World’ did not.
Even without the citizenship, can they not still be absorbed? How can Kenya be so horrible as to turn them away. Shame on them! Kenya has a population of about 44 million. Now this 600,000 estimate would be almost 1.5% of the population. But as mentioned where would these people go? They sure as hell aren’t going to go out into tribal lands. Populations of this kind usually tend to cluster around urban areas where there are amenities and services more accessible to those without communal ties. The capital city of Nairobi has roughly 2.5 million living in slums. Kibera, the largest one houses 250,000. What are the arguments that those in these camps should be given any of the consideration that could go to the locals?
I doubt many writing these responses have a none first world idea of what poverty entails.
Speaking of poverty, where should the funding for those in the camp come from? There is no welfare state in Kenya. Western countries have had generations grow up in welfare states, and for very logical reasons such as lack off communal ties and integration or familiarity with the local culture, immigrants tend to use welfare at a higher rate than locals.
This is information, though readily available, is not common knowledge.
Then there is the crime, culture clashes, tribes in the tribal sense of the term. The very tangible and important differences in religion and other systems of faith. There is the terrorism. Many decrying the closure of the camps would be the very same to point out this really sickens me after a terrorist attack in the western world that they live in gets more coverage by the western media that they watch they will point out that attacks occur more frequently in non-western countries and that gets no attention. Yes. Yes they do. But by that very logic you do not know of all the other attacks that happen in those locations. Well a few may be trawling the net to track them but I doubt it. There have been some higher profile attacks by groups such as Al Shabaab such as the horrendous attacks on Westgate Mall in 2013 and Garissa University attacks, that do use these camps as a cover.
So what is a State to do? In your opinion is the states responsibility to that of its citizens or just to general humanity. You can’t just throw money at this situation. You can’t just pray it away. You can, however, stop saying ignorant things in your attempt to virtue signal and either research and say something constructive or admit you have no idea what to do.
- Google images links: discretion advised but if you are an adult, and speak on this subject, at the very least see what is at risk. See what can come from it. Garissa University Attacks / Westgate Mall Attacks
- Previous Westgate Mall post discussing unfounded beliefs among other things.
- Shot video and took pictures around that time. May compile this into something. Having been there at the time does not mean you should defer to my opinions. I found out a lot more by searching online, just like you can.