Refugees On Their Way

The impending mass migration crisis

As Oregonians, we should all be alarmed at the numerous signs of a great calamity to come: the mass migration of Californians to our state. The climate-change-induced drought in that region has pushed California’s 38 million residents to the brink of social collapse, with millions on the verge of fleeing the devastation.

This year’s deus ex machina El Niño has temporarily abated the Golden State’s dehydration, providing a few more years of livability. But the overpopulated and infrastructure-debilitated region will simply feign the crisis has passed, when in fact the cataclysm has only been postponed.

Visits to California only heighten concerns. If you’ve ever witnessed the aggressive drivers of California, you can easily imagine those same people, hungry and unbathed, in the streets of our towns.

A terrifying group of California refugees to expect from the impending migration are the techies. This is a tribe that has been overindulged and overpaid for performing the most simple of tasks, such as making web pages. Accustomed to six-figure incomes for doing very little, these over-compensated heathen will make our own homes unaffordable to ourselves. They will try to convert our character-filled downtowns into chichi open-air malls of overpriced boutiques and Americanized sushi.

Compared to the relatively small problem of the handful of “travelers” currently found in downtown Eugene, hordes of former upper-middle-class families in grubby khakis camping out in Kesey Square will present an entirely different scale of problem. We’ll be wishing for the return of travelers to help teach them how to avoid exclusion zones and find public restrooms. These masses of displaced techies, sleeping in their Audis and Acuras, will make the dust bowl migration look like families on holiday road trips.

A particularly serious risk for Oregonians posed by the mass migration can be seen in the number of Christians living in California. Profuse numbers of Christian radio stations offer evidence that a swath of the Bible Belt runs through the Golden State. And while the media may try to portray Christianity as a peaceful faith, the religion has a long, documented history of violence.

The majority of California Christians may be nonviolent, but it’s certain that many “sleeper cell” radical Christians and KKK “Khristians” are hiding, even being sheltered, within mainstream churches. These radical fundamentalists will be crossing the border by mingling in with the other Christians, only to turn against us once they’ve established churches in Oregon. How will Oregon residents feel to see Christian law imposed? Are we ready for the public stoning of adulteresses? As well, many Christian sects prohibit birth control with the result of rapidly increasing populations that will surpass native Oregonians.

Which brings up perhaps the bigger question — are California refugees Oregon’s responsibility? Why should Oregon have any obligation to take them in? Shouldn’t other states that are fundamentalist Christian — like Texas or Oklahoma — be the first to accept them?

What should we Oregonians do to prepare for the millions who will be fleeing across our border? When swarms of thirsty Californians are sprawling their way north in a desperate quest for liquids, shall we just stand idly by and watch our state be overrun? When the coming El Niño snowpack has vanished and the lawns and golf courses have died forever, forcing millions on a northerly course, how should we respond?

If you lean to the right you might be inclined toward air strikes right now, with the vague notion that it will somehow make them all do what we tell them. If you lean to the left, you might talk about providing housing but end up offering a pup-tent ghetto in an unused industrial area with Porta-Potties. If you have libertarian sensibilities, you might support installing exorbitant toll booths at the border and building unregulated factories as fast as possible — it’s amazing how productive thirsty people can be in an overcrowded labor market!

But what about those of us looking for a reasonable solution? It’s imperative that when someone from out-of-state asks about Oregon, we stop answering with “It rains a lot.” Such language is the ambrosia of hope for Californians. We also need to act now to implement rigorous border controls and extended background screening for Californian refugees, with the building of long-term refugee camps along the Ashland grade.

As for myself, I’m thinking of just loading up the old fossil fuel burner and drifting north to someplace rainier, like Washington.

—Jefferson Goolsby

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