Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Comprehensive Sickness... Assured.

When Mexico gained independence from the Spaniards, back in the beginning of the 19th century (more precisely in 1821), California was naturally attached to Mexico. But then conflict stroke the territory once again (with the Mexican-American war) and the United States took California from the Mexicans (in 1848) making it a couple years later their 31st state. However, President Trump sees as a matter of necessity the protection of the Mexican-North American contiguous areas, and for that matter demands the building of a dividing wall, apparently to be paid by the Mexicans.

The British Empire was made of so many colonies that it would take me loads of pages to describe its lineage and the occurrences that determined such structuring. From Antigua and Barbuda to Zanzibar the world was undeniably under British dominance. Almost totalitarian if it wasn't for the spicy Spaniards and the modest Portuguese; intrepid sailors that arrogantly 'divided' the world in two, to avoid further friction between their vessels. However, when I walk on the streets of England, or turn the TV on to get to know the News of the Day, there is always a person claiming 'Brexit is good as it is about time these benefit-sucking foreigners leave the country'.

I am not going to judge empires, the historical process of colonisation or people's short memory in what regards the enslaving of weaker nations, the enriching of the bases with illicitly obtained goods and treasures. This is part of the social fabrics of every single former world potency. The British did it, the Portuguese, the Spaniards, the Dutch, the French, the Germans, and so on and so forth. However, this totalitarian Ingsoc ideology is not solely alive in Orwell's dystopian 1984. The reality is that the common citizen wishes, by his/her own interpretation of what history should mean and represent, to believe that it is natural to accept that 'who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past'.

This despotic and self-inflicted autonomous ignorance is bliss. But some waves of people, honest workers from foreign countries are somewhat dragged by this tsunami of 'imposed and unspoken prerogatives' intended to limit the access of some to basic rights of the many. As for example, the right to be informed of something naturally relevant for the security of one's future. Even nowadays, for example as when I speak to friends who like myself have been involved with scientific research, and for that purpose have travelled from their home countries to embark in the adventure of being scientists abroad. We cannot help but be blatantly mesmerised by the numerous things that we were not informed of, and that have been disguised by the institutions as 'information available on the websites'.

Recently, we were discussing the difficulties faced by many of us, who have been living in England for over 10 years now, in fulfilling certain privileges. How difficult it has become to obtain a British passport for our children born in England. How complicated the process has turned to be, after Brexit was approved and our statutes were downrated from 'valuable science minds' to 'undesirable trade currency - inanimate beings in the negotiation process between the European Union and the leavers looking to retain rights for the common trading market'. 

The fact is that sometimes a simple document can make a whole difference in our honest lives, and had we been properly informed of the need to obtain certain documentation at our arrival, the fulfilling of citizenship rights wouldn't look such hardship. The Comprehensive Sickness Insurance is a great example of something vital that was not a guarantee 'granted' by the different universities in the UK foraging for students worldwide. However, had these students been informed that this simple document is crucial when applying for citizenship/residency, after many years of actually contributing to the growth of the country... I am sure many of us, science students or researchers, would have asked for more clarity and initiative from our welcoming institutions, for more openness concerning such vital information that simply wasn't properly transferred, at our arrivals or far before during the recruitment process.

We now watch this alienation unfold where we are gradually being treated as a disease some (many unfortunately) want to get rid of. Our respective families invested time, money and energy preparing our futures and constantly contributed to the prestige of this country. But there are still misinformation 'geisers' that prompted many of us towards the disintegration process that was triggered when 'David Cameron naively decided to get his fingers in the referendum socket to see what would happen', as some comic intelligently said the other day on national television.

Also on national television there was a great documentary about Black History in England. In one of these incredibly good episodes, I had the opportunity to watch a lady saying it all. She basically resumed my personal experience with her own words and personal facts by saying something along these lines: "England offered me many opportunities; opportunities I was never given in my country of origin. But I had to work extremely hard to guarantee here the very little I actually possess".

Donald Trump calls the unwanted foreigners, the aliens. Here in the UK we are categorised as the migrants. Amid labelling stamps what we can actually observe is that the developed world is still unprepared to consider foreign honest workers as something more than a comprehensive sickness... that's for sure.

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