Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Wake Up, It Is 2015! Who Is Running the Asylum?

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Wake Up, It Is 2015! Who Is Running the Asylum?

Article excerpt

I WATCHED television coverage at the weekend of heated clashes between people arguing for marriage equality and those claiming to represent Australian values.

It got ugly with police on horseback trying to calm the mobs, but it was also hilarious and providing of some powerful insight.

One bloke complained belligerently about being criticised as a racist just for expressing his opinion.

He appeared ignorant of the reality that his opinions were racist.

An elderly woman on the opposing side told a reporter that none of us should forget that fascism always starts small. It was a history lesson that, in a year when we remember those lost to old battles, should never be forgotten.

Australia is in the process of making a decision. Some would say it has already been made, but I'm more optimistic than that.

We have at a federal level a government whose primary purpose, having gained power after six years of negativity, appears to be hanging on to it at whatever cost.

And we have a Prime Minister who is willing in his language and policy positions to exploit this country's racist underbelly to do so.

I struggle to even comprehend how in 2015 we can have a Prime Minister comfortably willing to describe the impoverished state of desert dwelling Aborigines as a "lifestyle choice".

And I've been genuinely shocked to hear a proud indigenous sportsman like Adam Goodes, castigated for the manner in which he celebrated a goal.

Social media is full of ignorance-fuelled bile alleging that Aborigines and refugees are somehow especially advantaged at the expense of pensioners and ex-service personnel.

Many appear more comfortable in that ignorance than willing to accept the truth of our history.

They're not helped by leadership that exploits and incites that ignorance for the short-term prospect of a vote or by an Opposition Leader in Bill Shorten who appears more comfortable being in lock step with the Coalition than trusting the electorate with an alternative to a brutally inhumane response to the globe's refugee crisis and who appears unwilling to truly engage with indigenous issues. …

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