AUSTRALIA'S favourite morning television larrakin has taken a blow-torch to Immigration Minister Peter Dutton's warning that asylum seekers were "illiterate and innumerate" and would take Aussie jobs.

In a powerful two-minute segment on Nine's Today Show on Thursday, Karl Stefanovic took aim at the minister, and his attacks on refugees.

Karl told a story of his own grandparents who spent a year at an immigration camp in Wollongong before building a life for their children and now grandchildren.

Today's sports presenter Tim Gilbert's ancestry also featured -- his family arrived in Australia following World War II with a poor grasp of English, yet they were able to develop a business and a life.


Regardless of politics there is something about Peter Dutton's comments yesterday that didn't sit well with many Australians including myself and Tim Gilbert.

Timmy's mother, came here as a little girl from Lebanon with her parents just before the second world war. Her family with little English and little money.

They got busy working as hawkers, graduating to their own businesses and quickly picking up the lingo.

My grandparents were the same, they spent a year at an immigration camp at Wollongong. He got a job working the coal for BHP, stayed there for 30 years. They built a house with their own hands in Balambi and built a life for their grandchildren to enjoy.

My best mate Al's parents came here in the 60s from Croatia and all they knew for 15 years was swear words.

They would have been considered illiterate. You know how it goes, ending a sentence with a swear word.

But this country is built on so many pillars including those that come from far away lands with not much more than hope and the drive for a better life for their family. They have made this a better place.

They helped make modern Australia.

In defending his comments yesterday, Mr Dutton appears to have cherry picked statistics which don't reflect the findings of his own department.

Listen to this report from 2011:

The larger picture of humanitarian entrants is one of considerable achievement and contribution.

Humanitarian entrants help meet labour shortages, they display strong entrepreneurial qualities compared with other migrants group with a higher than average amount engaging in small and medium business enterprise.

It goes on listing social and economic of refugees in this wonderfully diverse country.

It's a cliche, but what Peter Dutton said yesterday was un-Australian.

Given his time again he may have chosen a different way to a articulate it but what's done is done and I think he needs to apologise.

Not only for those arriving now but those who have come and now gone giving their blood, sweat and tears and handed down their values to the next generations who are many of our leaders today.

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