I must compliment AMUST on the comprehensive coverage of Christchurch tragedy in its April 2019 issue. NZ PM Jacinda Ardern has indeed shown true leadership, something I find hard to imagine here in Australia.
One thing that especially riles me in Australia is that when someone who self-identifies as a Muslim says or does something silly, every Muslim cleric is expected to denounce it.
Meanwhile, think of all the wretched and malign things Morrison, Abbott and Dutton have said about asylum seekers and minority groups here while self-identifying as Christians.
Where is the outrage? Where are the demands that leaders of Christian churches here set the record straight about their own religion and welcoming the stranger?
I gasped some months ago when I passed a building in Parramatta and noticed the name, ‘The Phillip Ruddock Heritage Centre’. This is the same Phillip Ruddock who lied about people seeking asylum throwing their children into the sea to force the Navy to rescue them.
Any racist calumny seems to be OK in Australia if the motivation is to hang on to power. But do we also have to name buildings after such politicians who engage in grabbing power by divisive politics?
Would the people held for over six years in mental torture as political hostages like Behrouz Boochani on Manus and Nauru be ‘detained’ there if they were European? This is racism.
It is time all of us from a minority group, or with a minority connection, and that is most of us, demanded an Australian Human Rights Act that will protect all of us, including our Indigenous people from being scapegoated and persecuted for political gain. I have seen it too much: from indigenous people to Muslims to Asians to Africans. Enough is enough!
My father was a Jewish refugee from Austria and was welcomed by New Zealand-Aotearoa.
He could not join the Air Force as an ‘enemy alien’, but somehow he did that. But at war’s end, in 1945, the RSA in NZ, like the RSL here, passed a resolution that all refugees should be sent back to where they came from with what they had when they arrived.
My father was livid and wrote a letter to the paper in Wellington accusing the men who voted for it of not knowing what and who they had been fighting in Europe.
In his own way, he called this anti-refugee resolution, a fascist resolution. And what we have here in Australia is the fascist treatment of refugees and asylum seekers.
When I see Dutton, I imagine him dressed in a Nazi uniform. And Labor are no better. Within the two major parties, Frydenberg and Plibersek are complicit in persecuting people in the same situation their parents were in… escaping danger, seeking sanctuary.
The UN calls it torture, locking up innocent people ‘indefinitely’. They will endorse policies to torture people like their parents to advance their careers, and not speak out.
Proportional representation would at least introduce a new dynamic into this corrupted political system together with a Human Rights Act.
As a kind of figleaf we follow Melbourne, Adelaide, Newcastle and Albany (WA) in having a peaceful protest for human rights, to bring the refugee hostages here immediately, and to stop treating our neighbours, Manus (PNG) and Nauru in the disgraceful, bullying, and colonialist way that has become ‘normalised’.
Our protest is every Friday at 5.30pm by the Queen Victoria statue which in front of the QVB. All are welcome.
If you want to know more you can phone me, Stephen Langford, on 0451 509 232.