Sucked in to ice addict losers
AUSTRALIA is in the middle of a skills shortage.
We need more locksmiths, hairdressers, mechanics and pastry chefs.
We seem to be doing alright for ice-addled criminals, though.
I’m not sure what the optimal number is, but it feels that as a society we’ve got there, without having to go the extra yard of importing them from overseas.
There was a case out of Victoria this week involving an Australian non-citizen whose pitiable life has been one long string of bad decisions — most of them apparently made while on crystal meth.
It was pitched as one of those stories that tugs on your heartstrings, in that the Geelong mother-of-five is facing deportation to her birthplace, the United Kingdom, despite the fact she emigrated to Australia at the grand old age of two.
Maybe I need to take my heartstrings in for a tune-up as, in all honesty upon reading her tale of woe, my flint-hearted, five-word reaction was “sucked in and bon voyage”. The story goes as follows. Our sister paper the Herald Sun reported that Kelly Webb, from Geelong, will be kicked out of Australia after blowing her last chance to avoid deportation under the federal Government’s immigration character test.
Ms Webb was set to be released from jail this week and taken to an immigration detention centre after her Australian visa was officially cancelled by Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton.
Ms Webb has a bleak backstory. She came here in 1988 and was raised in Victoria but never became an Australian citizen.
As a young girl, she was a victim of sustained domestic abuse, which reached its apex with her killing her own stepfather.
She was charged with manslaughter and received a good-behaviour bond.
After that her life descended into a cycle of drugs and crime.
In 2016, her long-term visa was cancelled while she was serving an 18month sentence for burglary with a steak knife.
After that offence, Ms Webb pleaded for — and received — a second chance.
Despite her extensive criminal history, she promised she had changed her ways.
In a post on Facebook last year she said the following: “The old Kelly Webb is gone, the new Kelly has her head screwed on and learnt from her mistakes this time. From now on my kids come first which is how it should have been 2 begin with but I was 2 self centred and selfish. Can’t wait for my future, I believe this is my 2nd chance to raise these kids and I wont f--k that up 4 nobody.’’
Whatever you think of her syntax, the sentiments sounded promising but, since then, Ms Webb has been back to her old ways, committing more crimes in the Geelong area. In February, she was back in court facing a raft of theft charges including stealing from a liquor store.
Her children are aged from two to 12 and some of her robberies were committed while she had her twoyear-old daughter with her in a pram.
She has admitted to taking meth daily and says she only committed the crimes to fuel her habit.
Whatever the case, Peter Dutton has had enough.
He is expected to announce that Ms Webb will have to head back to the old country, saying she is no longer Australia’s problem — as he has done and is doing with so many other criminal non-citizens, be they bikies, sex offenders or petty drug criminals like her.
There are plenty of logistical questions that surround Ms Webb’s pending deportation.
The first goes to whether we are simply offloading our own problems onto another country.
The second goes to how we, as a nation, would feel if the Brits (or Ugandans or Syrians or Malaysians, or anyone) started casually telling us that lifelong Aussie criminals who had lived in their countries since infancy were now heading back here. Another more pressing question goes to the status of Ms Webb’s children.
Do they stay here? Do they go with her? She has clearly proven herself an unfit parent — do the childprotection authorities step in prior to her departure, or do we leave that moral aspect of the issue for her new home country to grapple with?
For all these valid questions, these cases come down to one fundamental issue: personal responsibility, and the personal choices these people have made.
There is a limited pool of sympathy in our troubled world and however sad and horrible Ms Webb’s backstory is, I find it hard to summon up too much of mine for someone who has repeatedly squandered every chance at redemption.
If bothering to become citizens was too big a stretch for all these freeloaders, they could have at least shown limited gratitude by not breaking the laws of the nation that was kind enough to give them a home.
And, failing that, I suppose these non-citizens could have always followed the lead of others before them, by simply running for federal Parliament.
Ice addict mum Kelly Webb is about to be deported.