Updated Nov 24
Someone who was psychologically and practically equipped to move to a new country, may also be psychologically and practically equipped to move again. Also, some people deliberately use NZ as a “back door” to their real destination, Australia, which has greater economic and social opportunities.
However, a big reason could be the incredibly negative social attitudes towards immigrants.
I know I harp on this, but there is a big difference between men and women.
Men say stupid things, like:
“Do you ever think about going back?”
“Huh, huh, huh, I bet you wish you were back there!”
And then they get disappointed if you tell them that you actually have control over your location.
Women are much, much worse.
“You have an accent! Where are you from? Why are you here! You owe me an explanation!”
Most women in this country take one of exactly two attitudes:
- You had better confirm that you are being forced to live in your current location, without any choice. And that you are stuck in the same suburb for the rest of your life.
- You had better confirm that you will “go back where you came from”, without any choice. Not just the country, but a town where you lived as a child. Because it is very important to be as small-minded as possible, and to have zero adult control.
It really is that micromanaging. A lot of women get personally offended at the idea that someone could even just relocate to a new city, inside the same country. This also relates to many, many women’s locations being based on an emotional umbilical cord to their mothers, and/or a financial umbilical cord to their breadwinning husband. They totally resent women who assert basic adult independence.
Did I mention the, “You have an accent!” harassment with virtually every woman you meet? Some of them expect you to be impressed by their amazing perceptiveness. Some of them act like they have never met a foreign-born person before.
There are women who will start up a rapid-fire interrogation. Where they reveal nothing about themselves (not even their name). While demanding details about a foreign-born person’s legal/governmental status, work and finances (including taxes), and the arrogantly intrusive, “Why did you come here, so I can decide if your reason satisfies me”. Try working with the public, and total strangers will do this.
Let’s not forget the mass racism. If an immigrant is white/European looking, some people will assume that they automatically share the common bias against Asian people.
A lot of the condescension and hostility towards immigrants is really about tall poppy syndrome, and the resentment of anyone who got off the couch and did anything interesting with their life.
Some women get an indignant, “I never get to go anywhere I want!” attitude, as if the immigrant is perpetrating some kind of personal unfairness against them.
No matter how long an immigrant has lived here, there is an automatic assumption that they are really just on vacation. With confusion and resentment about how someone could be on vacation for years and years.
Generally, the only relief is in more educated situations, such as university environments, which contain many foreign-born people.
Speaking of which, there are people who will direct the, “you have to go back where you can from” attitude towards an immigrant with higher education in a STEM field, including a degree that was heavily subsidised by NZ taxpayers. It’s like they actually think that the “brain drain” is somehow going to help the country.
Some will automatically assume that, a foreign-born university student is here on a student visa which will expire upon graduation (or maybe better yet, dropping out). If she corrects this, and states that she is a permanent resident, some still don’t seem to comprehend the difference, and keep pushing.
I once encountered an induhvidual who claimed that, no employer in NZ will ever hire an immigrant, or even someone who merely moved to a new city within the country. The logic being that, all immigrants “go back where they came from”(to a specific town) for emotional reasons. So there isn’t any point in hiring someone who will be doing that real soon now. However, this is combined with the idea of job discrimination being used to force immigrants to leave. So it’s a circular logic.
I have encountered women who will demand to know if an immigrant’s mother lives in New Zealand, and get offended and demand an explanation if the answer is “no”. One directly stated the intent to harass a middle-aged coworker, every single day, to go home to her mommy.
I have encountered a woman who was a small-time landlord’s wife, and who suggested that, a paying, civilised tenant should move out and go back where they came from.
An OK country. But many, many stupid, small-minded people. And that includes in larger cities, like Wellington.