As a blogger, every now and then I come across a post that leaves me channeling my inner Oscar Wilde and thinking, ‘I wish I’d said that’. Sometimes, though, my feeling is closer to, ‘I’m glad I didn’t have to say that, because someone else has already said it much better than I ever could.’ I have both of those feelings today.
One of the items on my to-do list for the week ahead had been to write an open letter to Scott Morrison and Tony Abbott, addressing their government’s policies on asylum seekers and their appalling treatment of and attitude towards those seeking asylum in my country of birth. But it looks like someone has beaten me to it, and they’ve done a brilliant job.
Speakupforthose has just posted this open letter to Scott Morrison. It’s well worth your time to read it, and to consider using some of the ideas to write your own letter to Messrs Morrison and/or Abbott. As a taste:
I cannot help but wonder what happened to the man who so eloquently espoused his values, and principles of Christian faith, in a maiden Parliament speech. Perhaps he never existed at all, and they were just meaningless words read from a piece of paper. Perhaps he was sincere at the time, but he lost himself somewhere beneath ambition and a lust for power. I’m not sure which scenario I find more disturbing. What I do know, is that the Bible says that the way we treat “the least of these brothers and sisters” is the way we treat God (Matthew 25:31-46).
You have said that, for you, “faith is personal, but the implications are social.” I can see no evidence of the implications of faith in Jesus in the cruel, harsh and inhumane asylum seeker policies you have put in place. Your speech mentioned that Lincoln said, “Our task is not to claim whether God is on our side, but to pray earnestly that we are on His.”
While you might be able to avoid the questions in my letters, it is not so easy to avoid God’s questions. I sincerely hope you have thought through your answers.
I wish I’d said that – but I’m really glad that someone else did.
I’m still planning to write to Messrs Morrison and Abbott. It’s the least I can do. And yes, I don’t live in Australia. Their attitude to people not currently residing within Australia’s borders doesn’t fill me with optimism about my letter being taken seriously. But I’m an Australian citizen, and I don’t want to have done nothing about a dark period in Australia’s history. It’s fantastic to know that God-centred, eloquent, passionate people are already taking up the cause.