One Nation Voters – Hope. Fear. Racism.
This is the second blog in a series to discuss how the One Nation Party leaders promote themselves compared to who they really are. Through this article I will discuss how One Nation uses Hope, Fear and Racism to gain voters’ trust.
For those outside of Australia or if you are someone who has no interest in Australian Politics; the One Nation Party is a right wing Nationalist Party. They recently won four seats in the Federal Senate.
If you voted for the One Nation Party, chances are you see yourself as a Patriot. The first instalment in this series discussed how if you are a patriot, your vote is misplaced by voting One Nation. As One Nation are not Patriots, they are Nationalists.
One of the major comments from One Nation voters is that they are not racist. Some of them very proudly are; but I do not believe the majority are racist.
These voters are simply people who have grasped onto hope, through One Nation’s emotive marketing of fear. That does not make them racist.
One Nation Understands Us
If there is one thing I would like to say to One Nation voting readers; is that One Nation IS a political party. I often hear: One Nation are not like Political Parties – they ‘understand’ us. The fact that the party asked for your vote and won senate seats, means they are a political party full of politicians.
To give them automatic trust based on this falsehood does not mean that they understand you.
One Nation, Emotions and Political Marketing
This Political Party has been very clever in marketing their party to connect with your emotions. They marketed to how you feel about the lack of jobs, the inability to purchase a home, the cost of living and the fears of job insecurity. Also struggling on low wages and the worries, we have every single day for our children.
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation Party have taken all of these fears and instead of addressing them with real solutions; they present logic that is flawed.
That is that other people, who have a different skin colour or religion than you, are the real cause of your fears and worries.
This shows that they are even more political and strategic than most other political parties. Think of it like this. All political parties believe that their ideology or values system, will deliver a better Australia for all people. Whether this is Conservatism (Liberal), Laborism (Labor) or Environmentalism (Greens). These parties all truly believe these value systems will benefit ALL Australians. Regardless of what you believe in or what you agree with, this underpins every major party’s vision.
One Nation believes that there can only be a better Australia if we only cater for one section of Australia and make everyone exactly the same. A white Christian Australia.
This is a very politically motivated decision. It is also progressing a political agenda for their own power. They do not understand you. As a political Party they want to gain as much money and power as possible. Be wary of giving automatic trust.
Hope, Identity and Power
It is true that many Australians have lost hope and no longer trust the political system. Over many years, successive Governments have created a system that results in inequity and poverty for many. When we lose hope, we feel we lose our power and our self-identity.
People do not willingly give up power to others. It is not a natural act. That is why entire countries are forcibly taken through war. That is why labour that should be valued is stolen through unfair wages and slavery.
Many people feel that if we lose our self-identity, we give up our power. The power to have rights, make decisions, to move freely and to just be ourselves.
This is where the One Nation Party comes in.
Racism, Xenophobia and Islamophobia disguised as hope and equality
Throughout their history, they have targeted minority groups and have insisted that this minority will become the majority and take away your identity and power. That is a scary thing to think about. However, it simply is not true. Freedom is not gained through fear.
In the 1990’s they targeted Aboriginal Australians and Asians. In 2016, they are targeting Muslims.
If this is a vote for equality, could you stand up and honestly say that you would like to be treated like the people within these groups are treated?
Can you honestly say, that you would like to be abused and spat on, shunned and ridiculed, just because of your skin colour, your features or that you look like followers of a certain religion?
Politicians have a platform, we cannot imagine to have for our voices. Privilege and power are a politician’s automatic right. The words of the One Nation Party are used with all the power they have to target certain groups and set them apart from the rest of us.
By targeting one group as different, it automatically gives people who are not in that group the false impression of power. A real system of privilege and power is created when this is backed by a politician. If it is based on race or Islam it is Racism and/or Islamophobia.
This is nothing but political marketing to get your vote. It is to make you feel powerful. The same problems that make you feel you are losing power and identity are all still there. One Nation has not solved these problems by targeting others.
They have asked you to be angry at other people, instead of Government. Why? Because otherwise, they would need to come up with actual solutions that could be compared to the Government’s solutions. One Nation has had to do nothing to get your vote. They have placed blame on a minority group to distract you away from challenging their (non) policy ideas.
Three levels of prejudice and discrimination
The creation of fear is used because it positions One Nation as ‘protectors’ and ‘authority.’ Very simply, when people are fearful, they naturally want someone to protect them and to take away the fear.
To keep a level of fear that wins votes, it is important for people act on that fear.
There are three levels of prejudice and discrimination:
The first is how we ‘see’ people as different to us and how we make a judgement about them. It is about how we see people compared to what we see as the ideal symbol of what we think people should look like.
The second is how we feel about people. When you think about different races and groups, how do you feel? Happy, angry, excited, fearful? The key for One Nation is to play on the groups that people feel fearful about. This fear is heightened by creating falsehoods about an entire group and using emotive words, such as ‘We are being swamped by Muslims.’
Notice that the action words are negative words, that create fear about becoming the minority and losing our identity and power?
The third is about how we act towards others. This is important for One Nation. It is only logical that people will not be very friendly towards people they are fearful of.
Not being friendly and welcoming creates a divided country. This creates even more fear and uncertainty. One Nation hopes you will look to them, because they are the party who are agreeing with your fears. But they are silent about the problems that are the cause of your fears.
I hope that by explaining it this way, you can see that One Nation are not the ‘Average Australian’ like you. They play to your emotions and fears in a purposeful way.
This is a highly motivated party, with a very well organised strategy to gain votes, more power and more money, based on creating fear about other human beings.
The problems which cause our fears are not solved by targeting other human beings.
The problems that are the root cause of our fears will only go away when we keep challenging the Government or other parties who can gain power to stop inequality, creates jobs and we have real fairness and supportive public services.
Blaming other human beings, because they are different, will not solve this problem. It just makes the same problems even worse for the people in these groups.
I trust this is not the reason you voted for One Nation. I do not believe that most One Nation voters would purposely make life worse for some Australians.
Your vote should never be for a party who blames other people for the country’s problems. That is because the people within these targeted groups, don’t have the power to make the decisions. They are victims of the same system that you are. Only a ruling Government can solve the problems that underpin our fears.
If you did vote for One Nation, because you want to see everyone treated equally with fairness, I hope you challenge and re-think your voting decision. The divisiveness, racism and hatred One Nation champions, is the opposite of who you really are.
Originally published on Polyfeministix