In 2011, when Scott Morrison urged the shadow cabinet to capitalise on the electorate’s growing concerns about “Muslim immigration”, “Muslims in Australia” and the “inability” of Muslim migrants to integrate, he was rebuked by senior colleagues.
Deputy leader, Julie Bishop, and the former immigration minister Philip Ruddock, strongly disagreed with the suggestion, pointing out that the Coalition had long supported a non-discriminatory immigration policy and saying it was not an issue that should be pursued.
But Morrison, seeing it as a vote winner, pushed on. And Peter Dutton picked up the baton and eagerly ran with it, expanding the vilification to include second and third generation Lebanese Australians, African Australians and anyone else who offended his worldview of white supremacy and Christian domination.
Creatures like Pauline Hanson and Fraser Anning crawled out from under their rock, emboldened to once again parade their ignorant bigotry and racism – something that was soundly rejected decades ago when Pauline was sent packing the first time.
Hanson, Anning and George Christensen have all willingly addressed far-right rallies organised by convicted criminals, leading us to the ugly scenes we witnessed at St Kilda Beach yesterday.
So excuse my cynicism when Scott Morrison took to Twitter to tell us “I thank Vic police for their efforts dealing with the ugly racial protests we saw in St Kilda yesterday. Intolerance does not make Australia stronger. Australia is the most successful migrant country in the world. This has been achieved by showing respect for each other, our laws and values and maintaining sensible immigration policies. Let’s keep it that way, it makes Australia stronger.”
Far from being strong on national security, you are jeopardising it by alienating and marginalising groups in our society.
You unleashed the hounds, Scott and you did it for cynical political advantage. And now we are reaping what you sowed.
If you care about a safe Australia, we must send this mob of shit-stirrers packing. Get back under your rock and let decent people work together for all Australians.