While moderating our page we came across a post from someone whose parents who immigrated to Australia from Europe. In this post they suggest racism was much worse in the 1950s to 1980s. That is true for European immigrants, and likely for society as a whole, but doesn’t do much for Sudanese-Australians, Muslim-Australians or indeed Indigenous Australians when they are confronted with racism and bigotry.
The rise of anti-racism
As a society, our values change over time. Since the Holocaust in the 1940s, where racism resulted in a policy of persecution and mass murder on a grand scale, there have been numerous steps to make racism unacceptable and to tackle it both internationally and here in Australia. The key international instrument is the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination which came into effect in 1969. Australia’s Racial Discrimination Act was only passed by the Australian Parliament in 1975. These and other steps against racism, both practical and symbolic, have no doubt helped to create a climate where racism is less accepted in our society.
So we’re all good then?
The poster goes on to suggest that because things were worse in the past, our efforts to tackle racism are just “another stunt by snowflakes”. They poster is opposed to racism and rightly proud to live in what they describe as a “successful multicultural country”, but argue “ya can’t stop racism and also you’ve exaggerated lot of it too”. They speak of the stories from their parents, saying the “situation these days is nothing”.
For those impacted by racism, it very definitely isn’t nothing. While this person, born in Australia, thankfully hasn’t experienced racism, the experience of others in the community is quite different. The experience of communities who are being targeted is not insignificant.
Is racism rising?
The person also tells us “Don’t over exaggerate statistics you bunch of idiots !!” We’ve posted about the actual statistics recently and if anything we urged caution in dealing with some of these statistics. Criminal charges for serious racial vilification are up 400% on 5 years ago, but with only 15 charges this past year, it is still a small sample and may be a result of more willingness on the part of police to prosecute using this particular law. The 136 complaints of racial discrimination made to the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission, an increase of 76% compared to the previous year, is a more reliable measure of the problem – but still shows a substantial increase.
Now to repeat something else we’ve been saying in the media, we don’t think the number of people involved in far-right racism is rising. Rather, what we are seeing is a small group of people being louder. That group right now is far smaller than it was in 2015 when groups like the United Patriots Front were at their high point. That is, before the courts convicted them on criminal charges over their bigotry targeting Muslims. The far-right was also negatively impacted by social media companies becoming more willing to close down dedicated hate groups on their platforms. In 2019 it is harder to be racist activist, someone inciting others to join a racist cause, than it was back in 2015.
So why oppose racism?
The racism is still there. The statistics show that people are still experiencing it, and in increasing numbers. Those promoting racism are still trying to spread their message, as we saw over the weekend in St Kilda. Thing may be better than they were in the 1950s, or even than they were in 2015, but – and here’s the thing – we don’t want to risk that changing.
We’ve removed the original comments in order to share them here while allowing the poster the opportunity to remain anonymous. We would have removed the first one anyway along with all the other false allegation we’ve removed recently. We invite you to share your thoughts. We’d encourage the original poster not to identify themselves, but as they haven’t been banned, they may well see your comments and / or reply. A link to comment is below.
Their comments (spread over two posts) as an image and then as text:
It’s just a money hungry scheme Lol ?
Bro as a Aussie born to immigrant parents ya can’t stop racism and also you’ve exaggerated lot of it too
Australia has changed and its changed for the better
You want racism go back to the 1950s-1970s and even the 1980s
My parents and other immigrant families of those times have bad stories to tell
The situation these days is nothing
Oh come on this is another stunt by snowflakes lol ?
Australia is a successful multicultural country fucking hell as a first generation WOG yeah a derogatory word for Southern Europeans that the European migrant community adopted as their own word a little bit like how the African Americans adopted nigger in a slang kind of way . This is getting out of control this political correctness yes racism exists and will always exist but it’s not getting worse it was already worse 20-30-50 years ago it’s actually progressing quiet well . Don’t over exaggerate statistics you bunch of idiots !!
You wanna hear about racist stories my parents came to Australia in the 1970s those days where bad !!! Real bad
It’s 2019 a lot has changed since then !
Political correctness has gone to far !!! Way to far every thing is offensive these days it’s pathetic the direction society is heading to .
You can share your thoughts here.
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