The news this morning has the story of Italy refusing to allow a rescue ship containing 629 migrants rescued from the sea, to dock.
They say they've taken in enough already, and I can kind of see their point. Whilst it goes without saying that nobody can refuse to help drowning people, what do you do when they keep throwing themselves into the sea? Whatever they decide to do with this particular group, what are they going to do with the next one? ... and the one after that, and the next 1000 after that?
If we (Europe) make it easier for migrants, they will flood in by the million. The opposite end of the scale is to enforce a zero-tolerance policy; let them all drown, refuse rescue ships and any that are picked up get forcibly returned to their own countries - IF you have any way to discover where they are from.
There has to be some unified policy to address the issue. We can't continue with this ad-hoc reactive chaos. Between "let them all in" and "let them all drown" is the current point of "try to discourage the next wave from coming by making it difficult for the existing one".
What's wrong with letting them all in anyway? Isn't that closer to the "great big melting pot" sang about in the sixties and Lennon's abolition of borders in "Imagine" - or - is it really the case that we don't want that and want to erect barriers to stop people who don't talk or look like us from coming in and feeding at our trough?