A neofascist group displays Ku Klux Klan symbolism while defaming
foreigners in front of the El Carmen Church. Photo by Eric Jackson.
It’s not the foreigners who offend our country
by the Fundación Libertad
When Don Justo Arosemena said the words “The Homeland of Mankind is the world and if it was up to me, I would erase the word ‘foreigner’ from all the dictionaries,” he never imagined that the building that today bears his name would be being hijacked by hate speech and xenophobia.
That is precisely what’s blowing in the wind as the National Assembly analyzes Bill No. 578, which modifies and adds articles to Decree Law No. 3 of February 22, 2008, which created the National Migration Service and career immigration officials. This proposal, from which the government sought to dissociate itself when it was originally presented in 2019, includes in its body various measures that directly violate human rights, freedom of expression among them. It proposes to deport foreigners who insult Panamanians, among others measures that violate human rights, and freedom of expression, and would repress free dissent.
From a liberal perspective, these types of proposed measures cling to empty nationalism and puts at risk our capacity to be tolerant, as well as our potential to evolve as a country. As free and responsible citizens we have the duty to denounce this indoctrination of terror, based on ideas contrary to the spirit in which Panama is constituted as a nation.
We have always prided ourselves on being a melting pot, a country where diverse cultures, ethnicities and nationalities share in harmony.
It is not foreigners who, with foolish words, offend our country, but those who, having to be “fathers of the country”, seek to divide and corrupt. There is no way and nowhere to deport them.
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