Thursday 16 August 2018
I don’t think there is a greater societal problem in the world today than that of racism.
When a person declares inwardly using self-deceit or ignorance that he or she is superior because, certain factors, such as skin colour make it so, then they are racist.
When a person declares outwardly using self-deceit, ignorance or just blind hatred that he or she is superior just because of the colour of their skin, ethnicity or the faith they follow then they are racist.
Their racism has probably been handed down to them by the sins of the fathers. They are not born into it.
Such racist thoughts were expressed in the maiden speech of Queensland Senator Fraser Anning who called for a “Final Solution” to immigration.
His speech has been widely criticized for its obvious Nazi overtones and blatant racism. The “Final solution” was the phrase used by Hitler for what he called the Jewish problem. It called for the extermination of an entire race of people to satisfy a crazed mind.
To say that Anning’s words were insensitive would be an oversimplification.
Anti-Semitism or the practice of it can be traced back to medieval Europe. Jews were banned from many countries because they refused to practice the faith of their conquerors.
They were also hated because they loaned money and charged interest, which was forbidden in the Christian faith.
In the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, Jews were expelled from France, Germany, Portugal and Spain.
Josh Frydenberg was one of many MPs who were upset by Anning’s speech saying that at least 1.5 million children were killed in the Holocaust.
“Fraser Anning is a father,” Mr Frydenberg said.
“Let alone the 10 million people that were killed by the Nazis, of which six million were Jews.”
Mr Frydenberg said his comments were completely unacceptable and extremely hurtful.
He has no excuse and needs to quickly apologize.
But Anning’s speech wasn’t just about anti-Semitism. It was about trying to save a world that has long passed us by. About trying to save a faith that the facts show will die out in the next 20 to 30 years. About restoring an image of the average Australian of the 50s. About white authority and superiority. About Nationalism and not internationalism.
Men of Anning’s and Bob Katter’s background and vintage, I’m sure, walk through each day singing “Click go the Shears” while the rest of us concede the contribution that immigration has made to the culture of our country and that culture and values are but a work in progress that never gets completed.
And for all the imperfections that must by nature come with it, we just work our way through them.
I mention Bob Katter because during my lunch break I tuned into News 24 to see Bob give Fraser a grouse round of support.
He is the quintessential Australian Ocker who should be cracking his whip in the outback where the crack of his tongue can do no harm.
His press conference was full of factual errors and exaggerated nonsensical talk that, when the camera pulled back, revealed that he may as well have been talking to himself. Which was probably a good thing. Three very young junior journalists constituted the press conference.
We are confronted with yet more odious loathing. This time it is directed at those from Africa. It doesn’t matter what their country of origin if they are Muslim they will suffer the full thrust of minorities xenophobia. Just as 99 per cent of Muslims want peace so do 99 per cent of Australians.
In my piece We cannot let racism win I wrote:
“We have a long history of finding fault with things we don’t understand. At various times we have blamed communists, Jews, women, the devil, indigenous people and witches, even God, for all manner of things.
I have been privy to the ignorance that history has recorded on these matters and I am angry with the likes of Pauline Hanson, Peter Dutton and our Prime Minister who would seek to deny Australia of others who desire to, not only seek their personal freedom, but also the opportunity to give of themselves to the advancement of this great nation.
When I sit on the platform at Flinders Street Station and watch the passing parade of ethnicity I can but only admire a country I could never envisage from the same seat in the 1950s.”
My thought for the day.
“Never allow racism to disguise itself in the cloak of nationalism”
PS. Senator Hinch probably best summed up the speech when he said he sat through the speech by Senator Anning. Said he believes in free speech. But it was the most racist, hateful, spiteful diatribe he has heard in 50 years in journalism. “excruciating” and “Pauline Hanson on steroids”.