Unless you’ve been living under a rock the past few years, it possibly won’t have escaped your attention that the sleepy city of Albury has become home to some (or rather a lot of) new arrivals of late. As featured nationally on the SBS propaganda series “go back where you came from”, Australian government policy has determined that moving significant numbers of non english speaking migrants out of the cities and into regional areas might be a good idea.
While this may assuage the middle class consciences of many, I would urge everyone to take a moment to consider just how democratic (or rather undemocratic) this process has been. As a fairly keen follower of Australian politics for a few decades now, and an avid reader of Australian history which gives me some insight into a considerable period of time before that, I would put it to readers, that the process of Australia adopting multiculturalism as a national policy has never actually been put up for debate. Instead, what we have endured in this country is a succession of governments of both sides of Australian politics, leap frogging through time, all the while with a constant agenda, namely that we won’t bother to ask the Australian public how they feel about a particular wave of immigration, we’ll just do it.
A “Father knows best” approach to immigration displayed by both sides of Australian politics.
Many decry the “inhumane” treatment of illegal boat arrivals in Australia (notably the ineffectual UNHRC, as well as certain minority lobby groups represented politically by the Australian greens), many more applaud the Howard government’s “tough stance on immigration”, few realise (or are willing to admit) that the Howard era presided over the single largest influx of non english speaking migrants in Australia’s history. While public attention was focussed on rioting going on in places like Villawood, through the back door, the Howard government rolled out the red carpet to wave after wave of non english speaking migrants.
Let me leave you with this question. IF you, as a voter, were to look at the events in nations like the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Chechnya, India, China and the events in Cronulla back in 2005 and think “I would hate to see that in this country” what democratic course of action is available to you?
In other words if you see multiculturalism as a shortcut to national instability, increased ethnic tension in the community and an erosion of Australian culture, values and overall way of life, who do you vote for?
With every political would-be-if-they-could-be in lockstep on this issue, where’s the choice?