What is a Refugee?

I grew up in the 80’s, so my internal picture of what a refugee looks like is painted by the famines in Uganda and Ethiopia when we saw primarily women and children dying of malnourishment and disease.  Time and National Geographic produced image after image of humans in the most desperate straights – literally dying on the page.  These were those that caught the worlds attention.  These were truly helpless.  These were true victims of circumstance.




These are the images that formed the description of what a refugee looks like in my mind. These people needed our help! They were in such dire need that they literally could not help themselves.

Then in the 90’s we had the Rwandan genocide. Thousands upon thousands of humans desperate to escape sure death – again the majority being women and children – the innocents. Many escaping extermination ended up dying of disease brought on by undernourishment and unsanitary conditions found in refugee camps. Upwards of 1 million people died in the Rwandan conflict.




Contrast those images with the images we have of today’s ‘refugees’.


Only men? All seem well dressed. None appear to be malnourished.



Again … only men? After ‘reaching safety’ – well dressed. Well fed. With smart phones??

So we’ve gone from the dead and dying refugees of the 80’s and 90’s to packs of young, well dressed men … with smart phones.  I know some will say I’m cherry picking photos, and I am, but one thing you will not find in the 80’s refugee photos is young men.  Most estimates I’ve read is that the ‘refugees’ from Syria are 80% men.  80%!!!  Where are the true refugees?  Where are the innocent children?  Why only men?

Finally, these ‘refugees’ are now turning into this:


So, not only do we have healthy young men being called ‘refugees’, but these young men are so healthy that they can riot and wage war with the police of the countries they’ve ‘escaped’ to. If they were truly refugees of war, why not fight the oppressors in their own countries instead running riot in landed countries?

The ‘refugee’ of today is NOT the refugee of yesterday … to call these rioting young men ‘refugees’ is an insult to the memory of true refugees everywhere.


Almost to prove my point, Canada’s John McCallum (Immigration minister) posts a picture on Twitter yesterday showing him meeting ‘newly arrived Syrian refugees’  … all males!  (I couldn’t make this stuff up … lol.)


This little piece of Liberal propaganda just shows how unlike any past refugees the current crop of ‘refugees’ really are.

Why? Why are we calling these people refugees? Why are we bringing them into our countries by the 10’s of thousands? Why are we giving them more health care, housing and food than our own poor? Something is going on here, and it’s not about refugees because I know what a refugee looks like … and these aren’t it.

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