Roger Pugh

Letter to America: A Borderline Case

In his latest Letter to America, Australian Roger Pugh opines about the growing discussions surrounding a country’s borders and immigration policies in a 21st century world.


G’day Americans,

It is fascinating to speculate why the UK voted to Leave the EU. I believe it was out of a concern that the EU Parliament in Brussels has been making an increasing number of decisions the British believe should lie rather in the domain of their own government.

The EU Parliament actually dictates things in the UK like the specifications of sausages, would you believe, but the circuit breaker has arguably been the bid to act as the UK’s Immigration Department and dictate how many refugees come into the country.

This is symptomatic of a growing mindset worldwide to diminish the significance of national borders and has become a feature of the debate about your southern border.

Most people are proud of their country and are concerned that opening its borders to all and sundry could change it into somewhere else.

The British have decided that restoring the absolute power for running their country to their own parliament and taking back full control of their borders rank as higher priorities than the economic, security, and borderless benefits accruing from EU membership.

This appears to be much the same patriotic motivation that spurs so many in your country to support Trump’s southern border policy and so many here in Australia to support a naval blockade between here and Indonesia that keeps out people smuggling boats.

Maybe sometime in the future we’ll all appreciate the advantages of abolishing national borders, but currently the problems it causes seem too compelling.

In a world with no borders, interminable queues at passport control would admittedly be a thing of the past, Hillary wouldn’t have to worry about her emails being hacked by other countries, and there would be ample opportunity for Trump to get lost.

International sport would either become redundant or national teams would be full of foreigners.

Every country’s ethnic profile would eventually become identical to everyone else’s and patriotism could become just as grave a sin as racism.

But can you imagine some global authority having a greater say than McDonald’s over the specifications of burgers served in your country?

The concept of a world parliament is a real worry. When running a country is obviously beyond the capacity of most politicians, where on earth could we find politicians of sufficient caliber to run the world? Certainly not at the UN.

Yet, it’s still possible that one day Trump’s wall will become a monument to the memory of national borders.

Meanwhile, enjoy being American.

Roger Pugh



Roger Pugh

Following a career that comprised heading up global marketing departments and advertising agencies Roger made a seachange to his hobby of humorous writing by co-founding Political Satire site, Friday Mash. Roger is now the Native Content Director, heading up The Big Smoke’s Creative team and a regular political columnist in both Australian and USA editions of The Big Smoke.

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