Compassion, Service and Love. Three values which lie at the heart of Christianity, and most modern- day religions. Malta, being mainly a Roman Catholic country, boasts loudly of its long history of providing for the less fortunate year after year, during shows of solidarity such as l-Istrina among other marathons. From providing shelter during the shipwreck of St. Paul, to caringly welcoming migrants with open arms and helping them integrate into society. We do welcome them, right?
One must keep in mind that ironically saying “Amen” on Sunday morning and then “Go back to your country” an hour later does not make you a devout catholic. There are mainly two types of Maltese Catholics; those who recognise the hypocrisy in the above reasoning, and those who choose not to. I daresay we might call ourselves a Racist Roman Catholic country to be more realistic. In a country that is heavily influenced by the mix of patriotism and hate, we are not only failing in a religious point of view but more so as supposedly moral human beings.
One might insist that religion has nothing to do with the topic at hand or even not to mix the two, however, the general Maltese population is not afraid to utilise religion as their agenda sees fit. The vast majority of adults in Malta use religion as a basis to heavily condemn abortion with the claim that all life is sacred and should be cared for. Despite this, the same person that is sanctifying human life in the womb refuses to show the same respect to a fully grown human, simply because they are of a different nationality, skin colour or status. One starts to question how ironically “Pro-Life” the Maltese really are.
Most people nowadays are quick to make countless assumptions based on people’s skin colour. Whenever any sort of incident involving a dark-skinned individual, migrant or not, far-right channels start spreading their hate on social media platforms, condemning all dark-skinned foreigners in this country. They are quick to justify the actions of one individual on an entire group of people. If only once would they cry out that “All Maltese are savages” just after a Maltese individual commits a crime. Nevertheless, a criminal should always be brought to justice, no matter what race or position within society, yet we cannot continue generalizing an entire race on the actions of one individual. When will we realise that being black or white does not define our place in society?
“Oppression is easy to ignore, especially when it works in your favour”
We are all human. No less, no more. Unfortunately, not everyone is able to understand the concept that we are all part of the same race. Certain individuals like to use patriotism as an excuse to fuel racism against foreigners since they value their fully “Maltese blood” more than foreigners. The ironic part is that unless their surname ends in “Borg” or some other name that has origins from Malta, I’d have to say I have my doubts on their beloved patriotic Maltese past heritage. Let alone reminding a religious racist that Jesus himself was a dark-skinned refugee from the Middle East. Regardless, I doubt that racist individuals under the name “Catholic” would ever be able to understand or accept this.
Unfortunately, modern religion nowadays in the Maltese islands is becoming a form of identifying oneself rather than a moral compass to guide one through their existence. Even though the simple act of “loving thy neighbour” is within the roots of most worship and faith, one comes to question how truly religious and generous the Maltese population is when it denies the saving of immigrant lives in the open sea and only seeing such human beings as a burden to our society. When will we morally realize that we are all equal human beings? We are all human. No less, no more. You`re not any more special than any living human being out there.
(This article was originally posted on civilsocietymt.com)
Written by: Matthew Schembri
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