How can immigrants and visible minorities clear the minefields of misinformation?

by , under Enrique

There is an interesting news story on today’s YLE that raises a timely question: Not why there is so much misinformation spead about immigrants, but what does this reveal about us as a society?

Kuvankaappaus 2013-4-15 kello 16.51.40

Does it bring to light ignorance or a subtle conspiracy that permits us to have and eat our racist cake simultaneously?

While it is a welcome matter that Finnish officials speak out against prejudice and racism in our society, why has so little been done on this front in the past, especially by those who claim to be anti-racist and work to better the lives of immigrants?

You’ll probably find the answer to that question in the eerie silence and tacit approval of that misinformation being spread against immigrants. It is telling you as well that we must raise our voices and lead ourselves if anything is to change.

What kind of wise tales are being spread in public about immigrants?

According to what Pirjo Puolakka of the city of Kotka’s immigration office, they are the following:

  • Immigrants and refugees are the same thing;
  • Immigrants get more social welfare than Finns.

Another topic that could be added to this  list are rape and crime statistics.

Misinformation could be pictured in the following manner. It could be seen as the deadly mines up ahead of our path towards greater social equality and acceptance. Since clearing that minefield would be suicidal, it’s clear that few white Finns will do the job. This only leaves us.

But beyond those killing fields we’ll eventually confront the greatest foe of all: ourselves.