Her experience investigating the Migrant crisis is invaluable in a time when the only two options on the table seem to be extremes.
Lauren Southern is a Canadian libertarian activist who made herself known on the internet through various viral videos and minor controversies. She first came to prominence in 2015 when she started covering the infamous feminist Slutwalks, carrying a sign saying “There is No Rape Culture in the West” which resulted in her cameraman getting shoved and her sign getting stolen.
Subsequently, she became a major voice standing up on the European illegal immigration/refugee crisis. Famously she went as far as to attempt to block refugee ships which resulted in her detainment.
About two years ago she course corrected her career from being primarily a YouTuber/on-the-ground journalist to begin working on documentary films. Her first controversial documentary Farmlands was a spotlight on the state of white farmers in South Africa who claim they are struggling with high murder rates at the hands of roaming bands of murders and the threat of having the government confiscate their land as penance for apartheid.
Her second, newest and evidently final film Borderless is a much larger piece of investigative journalism that looks behind the scenes at the motivations of people involved in the mass migration of millions of people from the middle east and north Africa to western Europe.
The documentary takes a harsh look at the financial and social cost of illegal immigration and human trafficking between North Africa and Southern Europe. The movie makes an important delineation between war refugees and economic migrants. This is important because it’s fairly clear that the European Union does not.
The attitude and narrative of the EU are such that it’s quite difficult to openly discuss criticism for unrestrained immigration from the middle east and north African countries without being accused of racism. The issue has remained highly contentious in Europe since before the 2015 Paris attacks against Charlie Hebdo and has become one of the prominent issues fueling the rise of the European far-right.
The most interesting thing about Borderless‘s conclusion on the issue is how sympathetic it watcher becomes towards economic migrants. It’s revealed in interviews with several of the migrants that most of them are middle-class people from across the middle east who were lied to, who paid thousands of dollars to ship passage to Europe and were told that Europe was a paradise only to realize that they were duped. Many of the migrants we meet in the interviews talk about wishing they’d stayed home instead of leaving.
The movie’s most damning conclusion is ultimately that illegal migration is a money laundering scheme. We see it play out in the film as one prominent NGO known as Emergency Response Centre International gets caught during their investigation revealing to have laundered hundreds of thousands of dollars from the thousands of refugees they’d picked up with the implication that other NGOs do much worse.
It’s also revealed that other NGOs teach many of the economic migrants how to lie in order to get into Europe as refugees.
The documentary ultimately concludes that the migration issue is being propped up cynically by people seeking to profit off of human suffering. As a result, Europe is flooded with cheap labor that hurts lower class Europeans, radically changes the culture, creatures mutual hostility between Secular European culture and Islam and leaves many of the migrants in a poor state. In the end, nobody wins except for the corrupt profiteers.
It’s a credit to Lauren that the movie is as sympathetic as it is. It would’ve been easier to dismiss the film as mere nativist propaganda if it had been the case that she claimed that everyone coming over was merely seeking to purposely destroy European culture but the portrait she creates is quite surprising.
Her experience investigating the Migrant crisis is invaluable in a time when the only two options on the table seem to be extremes. While the movie offers few solutions to the crisis beyond breaking up corrupt government/charity schemes that are profiting off the crisis, it does do good to properly explore the actual problems at play.
On June 2nd, Lauren Southern announced her intention to retire from activism in order to go back to college and live a private life. It’s a shame that an activist so willing to stand up to public pressure is leaving the political world but she’s more than earned her respite. Here’s hoping her future career is as fulfilling and powerful and her previous one!DONATE
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