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Open Borders: Natascha’s story

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Open Borders: Natascha's story

This exciting new strand features volunteer’s stories of migration. Natascha’s story interweaves lessons from history with contemporary political insights. Under apartheid South Africa her mother married a white man at a time when mixed race relationships and marriage were illegal, hence they moved to Germany. Returning to South Africa and to a new school, she was asked what race she was, she wasn’t sure. Racial classification maybe a thing of the past, but today’s border controls are classifying people by place of birth preventing the freedom of movement we need to realise our potential.

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Related topics: International, Social Change

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Carol said:

It makes me feel very sad and angry that Natascha’s grandmothers’ life was only worth £1, just because she wasn’t white! This story gives us an insight to just how little South Africa has really changed and Apartheid is still visible in many places, for instance, black people are still in the lowest paid jobs and apart from a small minority, in the poorest of housing…if you can call Townships that. Thank you Natascha for sharing you story.

barbara roymacauley said:

Natasha has highlighted some excellent points.‘Open borders’ is a key civil right that has been neglected. The freedom to migrate for work and employment fulfilment has been swallowed up by the debate for benefits and social services, like the welfare state and also by racist arguments. It was refreshing to hear the real issues, in segregation and in class distinctions brought to the frontline.

Peter Tatchell said:

A very moving testimony. A reminder of past injustices and a spur to overturn existing ones. Bravo! Congratulations to Natascha and everyone involved.

Rob said:

Natascha weaves an absorbing narrative that nicely meshes her own life experiences with the politics going on around her in South Africa and the wider world as she was growing up. It is also a neat introduction to the kind of values that WORLDwrite stands for and demonstrates a bold, but nuanced perspective that doesn’t see the world in stark black and white colours, but (literally) all shades in-between.

jennie said:

Very interesting and educational story & a useful reminder of history we need to re tell . I agree on EMA too seen in this way- I hadn’t thought of it quite like that. I do think Mandela gets over played a bit as a hero in the West- he was a compromise merchant all along wasn’t he?

Zara said:

Wow compelling album and experiences- like the way she switches ideas and courses based on experience although we shouldn’t make a fetish of our individual experiences informing us of all- it does in a political contxt -give us key reference points.Suggests to me everyone should get around a lot more.

J Harris said:

Another good video, nice use of archive footage to make point, shocking re her grandmother-very interesting way to champion open borders- I like the sentiment but as the objections now are based on over population arguments and environmental limmits and too few resources etc it doesn’t tackle anti immigration argument head on – nice side swipe though as positive story & we do still have classification but not based on ‘race.’

Cyrus Watson said:

We forget that in the not too distant past, well-meaning white people would tell people where they could live according to a crude skin-shade test. Thankfully things have changed a bit.