If someone comes to a new country without a word of that countries language yet learns it well enough to talk to me in a short space of time, I'm happy to repeat myself without thinking them an idiot.
If a person who was qualified in their previous country for a white collar job and works night shift in a taxi while they get the same qualifications they had back home doesn't know the exact way home, I'm happy to point them in the right direction. It doesn't cost me anything to be courteous and helpful.
If someone has done more to earn the respect of their new fellow countrymen than any person who has "waited in line", pay it.
Do you know what someone like me - a white immigrant with family already here, from a Commonwealth country - does to get in?
Fills out forms.
Takes a medical.
That's all I have to do to earn your respect. All I have to do to be considered the "right" type of immigrant.
And I'm glad my parents went through that. Because it's given us a better life, and I love this country. But we weren't hounded from our country. We weren't persecuted, or threatened or in danger.
What does someone who comes here on a piece of crap boat go through? What will they go through if we send them back? What do these people have to do to earn your respect?
Seriously. If I'm the ideal candidate for immigration, if I'm the only type of person you want in this country, ask yourself why. Because I look like you? Because I sound - for the most part - like you? Because when I walk past you on the street, or work next to you I don't make you confront your own prejudices?
Regardless of what someone is fleeing from - poverty, persecution, a hopeless upbringing with no opportunity to get ahead - they've done more to deserve their place than me. I fled nothing, endured nothing more than inconvenience and apart from some mild teasing about the way I pronounce some words, people accept me.
Once we were a nation of "battlers". A nation that gave a hand up to those who were down.
When did that change? When did we decide there was a limit (Whilst still offering a bonus for increasing the population) on compassion?
**EDIT** An additional note. I am heartily sick of hearing the "Don't like it? Leave!!!1!" bullshit everywhere I turn. Seriously? You think that because someone is an immigrant they are never - regardless of provocation - allowed to disagree with policies, politics or any social problems they see? Why? Every single person who holds that belief does their fair share of wingeing about society, but immigrants aren't.
Those people, to a man, believe that an immigrant can never truly be Australian, and only Australian-born Australians have any right to complain.