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Canberra Racial love in

By Thumper 20 December 2005 13

As Sydney does its best to emulate Paris, we had in our fair principality [the Canberra Times reports], a little love in to quell the fears of the residents and to show unity for peace and tolerence between differing races and religions. This is due to the Sydney fracas and also due to an under current of possible violence here.

Now as much as I think the love in is a good idea, it really doesn’t address the issues in ant way as the people who perpetrated the violence in Sydney are very unlikely to attend love ins. This is because they don’t have the time to do so, rioting and beating up innocent people must take it out of you.

From my point of view I see it as law and order issue. I don’t care if the perpetrators come from Australia, Lebanon or Upper Volta. This sort of violence needs to be punished for the anti social behaviour it is and as such the courts need to start handing down sentences in line with the crimes, and not fobbing them off under the guise of a disadvantaged background or some other equally ludicrous reason.

Personal responsibility is just that. These people, on all sides, show no tolerence to others so why should society offer them the same.

And I always think these symbolic things are a scream such as, ‘At the interfaith gathering in Barton, representatives began the service by lighting a row of candles from a single taper. ‘

Good on them for trying, but lets see it backed with action, not just words.

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Canberra Racial love in
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bulldog 12:03 pm 21 Dec 05

Cheers to you Thumper – you’re statements make a lot of sense as well.

Colsim – I don’t see assimilation as losing ones identity. Look at the Greek and Italian communities in Melbourne – they are now predominately ‘Aussies’, but they contiue their traditions and festivals unabated; more so they encourage and welcome all Australians who want to join in on the fun. I think that’s assimilation at it’s best.

Have heard from a mate who was training in Glebe Park last night that there were groups of Lebanese and Anglos wandering around fighting and carrying on like general fuckwits – and all the cops could do was scream around Garema Place in the patrol car with a ‘you better not’ look on their faces. Anyone see or hear any of this? it concerns me that thisbreed of fuckwittery is infectious.

And yes – as a wog I find Pizza hilarious becasue it can hit pretty close to home at times.

Thumper 7:53 am 21 Dec 05


“I think what we need to do is celebrate the various festivals and special events of non-Anglo Australia as enthusiastically as we do Christmas and Easter. Nothing like a good party to get people talking”

We already do mate. It gets aired at every opportunity. Maybe not so much in outer Sydney but the Carr government has pushed a strong multicultural agenda for a long time and Mr Stanhope sometimes appears to think it is his only duty here in the ACT

The problem I see it as is that myself, and my mates, and everyone I know, don’t plan to load their cars up with baseball bats with the view to belting anyone they happen to find, and likewise, don’t plan for a day of simply abusing people for the hell of it. That is simply criminal and shows a total lack of disrespect for people of all types. In fact it is sickening to think that someone could deliberately and coldly organise something like that.

I do realise that this is not an isolated thing with regard to race, but is rapidly appearing to be so and as such I can totally understand the vigilante sort of action that transpired, not that I agree with it.

i also realise that its not the whole population. that cannot be stressed enough.

Interestingly the recent root cause of all this trouble, ie, “Middle eastern men” beating up, stabbing, abusing beachgoers, has now been relegated behind the amazing fact that there exist nationalist thugs!

no kidding guys, great journalism that.

I firmly believe its a symptom of a government too politically correct to call a spade a spade. If a big guy who looks like a Scandinavian knocks over a shop carrying a rifle I’d rather know about it instead of some watered down, tall Caucasian with blonde hair. Samey same for all.

The softly softly approach has not worked I’m afraid. Its time for government and community to work together and not allow social bonds and loyalties to destroy everyone’s lives.

One must remember that these issues have not reflected well upon the Muslim community, which is patently unfair and a tragedy in itself.

And in finishing, I must admit, I’m wary when passing a bunch of Lebanese at night simply due to the comments and abuse you sometimes get. Stereotypes maybe, but stereotypes come from reality. Pizza (the TV program)is only funny because there is a large element of truth in it.

I have no answers but Alan Jones is most definitely not one of them.

terubo 9:57 pm 20 Dec 05

Particularly the penultimate paragraph from colsim. Onya!

Thumper 12:53 pm 20 Dec 05

Good comments bulldog.


colsim 12:48 pm 20 Dec 05

I think what we need to do is celebrate the various festivals and special events of non-Anglo Australia as enthusiastically as we do Christmas and Easter. Nothing like a good party to get people talking.

The concept of assimilation works broadly along the lines that everyone should try to be the same, whereas (imho) one of the core values of multiculturalism is that a range of cultures are able to co-exist peacefully and in doing so society benefits from the diversity.

Obviously that is very much an ideal world situation and where there are differences there can also be tensions but I think underpinning this is the overall Australian appreciation that we live in a pretty bloody good and peaceful place.

I do believe that a lot of this community tension has its roots in the demonisation of Muslims over the last decade for political ends. Conservative forces like a population that is angry, scared and divided and they also love to have an enemy. If it’s not the terror menace it’s the idea of queue jumping asylum seekers and our apparent need to lock them up in the desert for years at a time while Anglo backpackers overstay holiday visas scot free.

I think the Australian people are on the whole pretty easy-going and open minded but when Alan Jones (a freakin footy coach, ffs) and his neo-conservative mates keep yelling in their ears 24/7 it’s hard for some not to be drawn along.

bulldog 11:54 am 20 Dec 05

Let the f*ckin’ do-gooders feel better about themselves by hanging out with ‘ethincs’ fro the day. I’ve got no dramas with the ‘love-in’, but it’s not targetted at the people who need it most.

I don’t have any solutions – other than a zero tolerance attitude to the perpetrators of violent crimes, be they racially motivated or otherwise.

It’s funny from where I sit, being a second and third generation Australian with European heritage. A lot of my mates fit into the same or similar category.

Now, without blowing any trumpets, we (my mates and I) are all Australian; we drink (lots of) beer, we get up at the crack of bullshit to attend dawn service, we enjoy bbq’s, camping, two up, cars and fishing. We help people who have broken down on the roadside. Yet through all this there are many who still call us ‘wogs’. Now there is no animosity surrounding this word any more – but I think terms like ‘lebo’ carry the same connotations that ‘wog’ and ‘dago’ carried twenty years ago; thus it does no favours using it when trying to put forward constructive solutions to this ongoing problem.

IMHO this is not a community based problem. This is an assimilation based problem. This becomes apparent when you can compare many families who moved to Australia between 1900 and 1950 to those who have arrived later. Maybe it’s time related? I’m not sure, but whatever the cause it will continue to spiral when ethnic groups form ‘ghettos’ in cities and towns accross the country. I don’t know how to solve or control this, but hand holding and candle lighting doesn’t seem to work. Good on them for trying, but I’d like to see them try and stage their love-in in Lakemba.

Maelinar 11:43 am 20 Dec 05

Now, Now Barking Toad, half of the cause behind all of the tension today is because a few thousand years ago somebody said ‘Nail em up’.

barking toad 11:38 am 20 Dec 05

Hippies holding hands and sharing candles is all very nice but achieves diddly apart from making them feel good and giving them something to talk about while sipping herbal tea.

And this whole thing isn’t so much about race or religion but about people wanting to act in a way that is not acceptable in our society

Nail ’em up I say.

Absent Diane 11:10 am 20 Dec 05

I believe there should be sterner laws for public bullying as such – this would deter these bad eggs…. but I personally think the reaction to lebo’s has to do with years of tension (including the rapes and so on) but also to do with the current world climate…. people angsty over past and possible future terrorist attacks…. basically the lebo bashing represented people making a stand and trying to do their bit in making australia safer and get a bit of revenge at the same time… which of course is f#$king ridiculous and sickening… if they had targeted the particular pricks who beat up the life guard… I could maybe turn a blind eye… but they were indiscriminate in who they attacked…

colsim 10:52 am 20 Dec 05

I’d say the more of these kind of things the better, personally.

I’m not going to say it’ll solve the problems that more than a decade of racial demonisation have wrought upon this country (as well as long-term Shire turf wars and opportunistic neo-nazi activity) but it’s important to show everyone that this kind of behaviour is not accepted (even tacitly) and that Australia’s multiculturalism is celebrated by the many.

I don’t think it’s really expected that the perpetrators would be in attendance but it’s important for the community to demonstrate unity in opposition to the hate-mongering that has been going on.

One other thing – I for one have to say I’m a little perturbed by these enhanced police powers that have been slipped in the back door – I can see they may have a certain value in times like this but is it still going to be an arrestable offence in 3 months to refuse to handover your phone so your text messages can be checked?

As for the drug thing – may well be an issue for some but sounds much more like a talking point introduced to cloud the issue to me (it was an anonymous comment on Crikey originally I believe – at least that’s where I first saw it)

Spectra 10:51 am 20 Dec 05

Personal responsibility is just that. These people, on all sides, show no tolerence to others so why should society offer them the same.
Because that’s what makes us better than them – not lowering ourselves to their level.
Don’t misunderstand me, I agree there has been some laughable sentancing, and some work could certainally be done to bring it in line with “societies’ expectations”. However, we have to be really careful that we don’t head down the slippery slope towards the “eye for an eye” view that logically ends in the death penalty.

Maelinar 10:25 am 20 Dec 05

I agree with Thumper, this is bandwagon jumping, and no matter how much incence is burned, a bandaid will not make the issue go away.

JB’s point about the drug interests may however…

johnboy 10:14 am 20 Dec 05

I hear the young lebanese and surfies have realised they have a vital shared economic interest (the drug trade) and that neither group are much enjoying the current consequences of their actions.

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