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Are Nazis running Victoria?

Currently the Neo Nazis who performed their Hitler salutes on Parliament House steps in Melbourne six weeks ago are effectively instructing Victoria Police which events the self-declared fascists will allow to take place in the state.

Premier Dan Andrews spoke out in horror on social media about the death threats made to councillors and others by the Neo Nazis. It is, however, the legal system and the police’s tolerance, at the very least, of these hateful figures that has led us to this point.

At the beginning of this year, the Neo Nazi making these threats avoided a jail term, instead being sentenced to 18-month community service after a disgraceful attack on a Black security guard outside Channel Nine in Melbourne. The attack was “brutal in its force, speed and repetition” on an unsuspecting victim. If the skin colour of the actors in this assault had been reversed, would the judge have left the assailant to walk free?

On the 18 March, the same man led a posse of threatening buffoons to join him in support of an English grifter’s anti-trans speech at Parliament House. The police kept the Nazis and the disinformation purveyors on the safe side of their activity, effectively protecting them while the fascists performed their Holocaust-linked signal. Meanwhile the small pro-trans justice crowd, emotional at this display of trans-exterminationism, were aggressively pushed around and teargassed by those same police.

These same far right figures infiltrated the conspiracy-world’s “freedom” rallies over the worst of the pandemic. The groups are loosely allied now in infiltrating this American campaign onto Victoria’s streets.

The new “crisis”?

A performance called a “rainbow story hour.” This is the grandchild of Dame Edna and the Panto Dame. Theatre has a heritage of “drag” performances as old and esteemed as the western tradition and beyond: Antigone and Juliet were both drag performances. A rainbow story hour is a glittery drag performance, where a child-friendly story is read at a ticketed event. It is no different to the clowns and fairies who perform for children too.

In America, however, the right has decided that these performances are the perfect event to turn into a grift and a culture war. It is an aspect of the war on trans existence that has brought into state congresses across America hundreds of bills aimed at persecuting a tiny, visible minority as the first step in erasing acceptance of LGBTQI+ rights. It is perpetrated by the same forces stripping reproductive rights and threatening to remove access to contraceptives and women’s right to no-fault divorce.

The attack on trans people is an unalloyed win for these groups in America. The evangelical/Pentecostal perversion of Christianity that has coopted the Republican Party is absolutely committed to “traditional” male and female roles. Complementarian marriage is the only choice: man will be masculine and dominant. Women will be feminine and submissive. Heterosexuality and breeding are compulsory. Any other action by anyone acts to prevent End Times and the return of Christ to rule for a Millennium. Climate change’s disasters tell them this event should be imminent if only humanity would be pure.

Their white supremacist colleagues are delighted to join the fight. They too loathe gender or sexual blurring as much as they hate “racial” blurring. The pink triangles that the Nazis affixed to the clothing of the homosexuals they sent to concentration camps are back in fashion as a symbol of resistance to this resurgence of fascist homophobia.

Over the last year there have been a number of events where rainbow story hours were targeted by militia and thugs and conspiracy theorists in America. The most dramatic vision emerged from Columbus Ohio last week, where a group dressed in red and black chanted, “There will be blood” outside one such event, while waving a swastika flag.

Donald Trump is using the attack on trans existence as a prominent part of his presidential campaign of retribution.

The attack on trans existence is America is very clearly the first wave of a campaign on LGBTQI+ existence. Acceptance of LGBTQI+ rights and existence is repeatedly targeted in the bills being introduced. There is talk of the death penalty for being gay.

The same nonsense talking point that led to so much violence in the past is being indiscriminately applied to LGBQTI+ people again now: they are wrongly accused of being a pedophile threat. One of the more unpleasant drongos attached to Australia’s conspiracy-right movement labelled Andrews a “groomer” as a result of his condemnation of the fascist threats to councillors.

The campaign coincides with attacks on women’s rights and on people of colour.

So Melbourne’s Neo Nazis are threatening the lives of people associated with LGBTQI+ events now. What will be the next form of event that these men – or their conspiracist associates – decide is intolerable?

Victoria Police have repeatedly “advised” councils that they cannot protect them from the Neo Nazi or conspiracist threat and that the event should be cancelled.

One Monash councillor fairly suggested the Neo Nazis’ actions could “reasonably be understood as terrorism.” Dan Andrews stated that “This Americanisation of our politics has no place here,” and nor do the bigots’ “hateful views.” The vast majority are in agreement, as the Coalition parties are finding.

That leaves Anthony Carbine, Victorian Police Minister, to work with his government colleagues and police leadership to decide how long the small group of Neo Nazis will be allowed to decide what Victorians can do. It won’t end with rainbow story hour.

 

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7 comments

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  1. Anne Naomi Byam

    Excellent article – albeit a frightening one.

    You made one mistake Lucy – just one error.

    You called this extremist Nazi filth that is threatening us …” MEN ” .

    Truly, that they are not.

  2. Lucy Hamilton

    Agree, Anne. They are appalling wretches, too many of whom think it’s all a big joke.

  3. Lucy Hamilton

    Great comments all.
    Good article from the Independent (UK) at the moment saying that misogynists/bigots tend to be suffering from inferiority complex. I wrote in my last one about this topic that there is the spirit of trolling cruelty fostered by the chans (message boards) where young blokes – mostly – have been ramping up all the cruellest edgelord hatreds in memes and banter, also steered through jokes to extremist groups. I left teaching in a boys school because enough of the Trump (king of the trolls) spirit had infiltrated a certain type of boy and I couldn’t guarantee remaining professional in the face of the arrogant dismissal of others’ worth.

    I am well aware it’s not just men but it is far more often the men on the streets. Good Atlantic follow-up on Lauren Southern who was one of the bimbo influencers working with the white supremacists. Apparently she was then (now?) living with a non-white partner and at least one child in Australia. I hope she regrets the damage done to people she loves.

    Incidentally, Dan does have a corruption problem and his intransigence is not a good look. My father was one of the faces of the federal ICAC campaign. Indeed he designed the model of IBAC that Baillieu nobbled and Dan fixed a little. Dad’s book – which I helped him with – is Keeping Them Honest. He is outraged by Dan’s high handed disrespect for integrity, although not quite as gobsmacked as he was by the federal Coalition’s decade of increasingly brazen corruption.

  4. Lucy Hamilton

    The interconnection with Hungary continues to astound. How the hell did such a peripheral country become the nexus of so much vile bigotry?! (rhetorical) The fact that, as we have both posted before, so many Liberal politicians end up on that speaking tour is dire.

    We need to keep decoding their meaning of “free speech” or “family values” rather than allowing them to own such worthy sounding tropes for their poison.

  5. Michael Taylor

    Viktor Orbán is the new pinup boy of the GOP.

  6. Lucy Hamilton

    Terence. Vic doesn’t have a robust model. It is better than the model the Coalition was pushing but not nearly good enough. I recommend Dad’s book “Keeping them Honest” if you want a very readable account of the differences from a man who has designed that anti-corruption commission (before Baillieu defanged it), taught and written extensively on the topic. (And I made it less lawyer-dry with him 😀 ) Author SP Charles with Catherine Williams – she wrote a 1/3 so it could be out in time for the election last year.

    The IBAC doesn’t have nearly enough public hearings. (That is the worst bit of it, and the feature Dutton apparently forced into the NACC.) It is resource starved. It also has a provision to provide natural justice to those with adverse findings that slows releasing reports to a snail’s pace. That’s why the reports didn’t come out before the Vic election. There are much quicker ways to provide allegedly dirty people with justice.

    I like Dan. I thought he did a lot of great stuff. The opposition is a clusterfork. All that said, Vic Labor has some serious problems to sort out.

    Re the Herald Sun and the Vic opposition? Dan needs to avoid giving them material. Their relentless rubbish allows him some cover but it’s not great that he’s allowing that propaganda to hide an urgent need to make-over IBAC.

  7. Terence Mills

    Thanks, Lucy

    I’ll put Keeping them Honest on my to read list

    From what I read, the Liberal party in Victoria is not looking real flash at the moment, either.

    I find the Moira Deeming situation also to be intriguing : is she really a Nazi sympathiser or just an uppity woman : both equally despised in the Liberal party.

    PS: With Stuart Robert resigning and the budget tomorrow, I wonder if the Treasurer has made an adequate provsion to pay brother Stuie’s home internet account !

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