Boat people are not “illegal” or “queue-jumpers”. On the contrary, every human being has a right to seek asylum in any country they can reach. That is found in Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: a document Australia helped draft; a document which was adopted by the General Assembly of the UN on 10 December 1948, with an Australian (Dr HV Evatt) in the chair.
Boat people do not commit any offence by coming here without papers, without an invitation. But our politicians call them “illegal” and persuade us that mistreating them is OK.
And in Kabul or in Tehran or in Baghdad or Damascus there is no queue to join.
Let me be plain about this: calling boat people “illegal” or “queue jumpers” is a lie. Politically effective, but a lie.