I was watching the news last night and on it was a small bit of news that struck my ears. John Howard the Australian Prime Minister said that there is a small section of the Islamic community that needed to learn the English language and embrace Australian values including the treatment of women as equals ( he has suggested that 99% of the Islamic population has integrated successfully and is part of the Australian community). He was blasted by his own Islamic advisers who have accused Mr Howard and other senior ministers who have said similar things of fuelling hatred by using “inflammatory and derogatory” language.
John Howards Islamic advisers have said to the PM that if he doesn’t want to see a repeat of the Cronulla incident in Sydney then he should apologise to the Islamic community. That was on the news last night.This is a quote from Reuters about the situation:
SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australian Prime Minister John Howard has called on migrants, particularly Muslims, to integrate into Australian society by quickly learning English — sparking warnings his comments may lead to race riots.
The head of the government’s Muslim advisory committee, Ameer Ali, said on Friday that Howard’s comments could fuel race riots like those at Sydney’s Cronulla beach last December.
Is that a forcast of what could happen? I hope not! I for one do not want to see a repeat of what happened in Australia. We should be keeping a very close eye on the current social climate and hope that there will not be a repeat of last Decembers race riots. If there were to be riots, at whose feet could the blame lie?
What I am hearing is this – the Islamic advisory committee is saying that whatever is said in a Democratic country could very well upset the Islamic community and marginalize them, which then could go on to ignite possible violence. Great! I guess I had better shut-up then. Gag me if you please!
I happen to agree that women should be treated as equals in this country (in any country actually) and that we should live under one common law. In Australia we have the right to protest peacefully, I wonder if that freedom will be utilised and encouraged over any senseless, violent rioting.
Why can’t our politicians say that they want better integration for a better country? I have to wonder where all this rhetoric is going to lead.
Thinking on all of this I am reminded of the fact that if I go and live in Saudi Arabia I can’t even take my bible into that country, let alone have fellowship with other Christians. It is against the law. I would by law have to live by the laws of that country. That country does not apologise for that. It doesn’t have to because it is not a country of freedom.
But a democratic country however, has to allow for freedoms of all people. So, what about the more extreme sharia’ law abiding people living in Muslim communities. Should they be allowed to practice their religion in complete freedom in a democratic country and exercise their right to live under their sharia’ law? Does a true and un-hypocritical democracy actually insist on it? These are questions that should be asked. I bet you won’t like the answer when you find it.
Charlie Hebdo editor Philippe Val wrote: “When extremists extract concessions from democracies on points of principle, either by blackmail or terror, democracies do not have long left,”
Are we beginning to see democracy turn around on itself and bite itself on the proverbial behind? This post is full of questions I know, but they must be asked. I am not going to give any answers to them but that doesn’t mean that I do not have my opinion on such matters of where this world is heading. You only have to read my blog to know where I stand on any man made governmental structure…I know that it will fail. Democracy is an ideal that is not an ever lasting one – but it actually has a life span of around 200 years or so, history testifies to that fact.
Yet, we have people who are of the christian persuasion – like the Rick Warren’s and Brian McLaren’s of this world – who insist that this world can live in perfect harmony in a mish mash of different faiths, within an all inclusive and post-modern integral system.
I have a feeling that this is man’s last ditch effort to save the democratic ideal that we all hold on to so defiantly and some of us can see that it is beginning to crack. Mankind has his head stuck in the sand by choice I think.
Well, I have pulled my head out and I am looking around – I have a mouth to tell you about I see…. and there fine people, you have the problem! While I have a voice, I will use it! Because there may come a time when I can’t.