One can’t have a blog called ‘stuff matters’ and not comment on stuff that really does matter. The atrocious crime committed by Anders Behring Brievik in Norway last weekend was horrific.
The bombing of central Oslo followed by his horrendous crimes at the holiday camp on Utoya Island where he machine-gunned down 80 young people seems inexplicable but, I believe, it can be explained.
Here is a man poisoned by blind hatred of difference – of otherness – anyone different to his ideological bent such as those who follow the Islamic faith. Driven by his peculiar ideological belief that goes directly against the Christian faith, this self-proclaimed right-wing Christian (I would add fascist) hates Muslims, multiculturalism, Norway’s immigration policies and Marxism. His excuse for committing this crime that he wanted to start a European revolution to fight for independence. This is the work of a madman, not one who should be in an insane asylum, but of a madman possessed by insane ideas.
As Mike Carlton wrote in the Sydney Morning Herald ( 30 July 2011). ‘His [Anders] 1500-page diatribe, grandly titled “A European Declaration of Independence”, written in literate English and emailed to right-wing hate group around the world appears to have a closely argued thesis demanding the extermination of Islam, multiculturalism and Marxism. Not a stupid man.’ Here is a man determined to hate, hurt and kill – spiteful in the extreme, full of malice and the indifference of care for others.
The vile acts of this man are the very extreme of what is being disseminated far and wide in Australia through insane (not asylum insanity) and inflammatory remarks by shock jocks and conservative politicians who want to inflame hatred of the Government. They’ll do anything to dislodge Labor from government regardless of the effects on the Australian economy.
If you don’t believe me that a culture of hatred, fear and panic has been talked up by the right wing and far-right advocates in Australia, here’s a few killer examples to digest.
Joe Hockey was asked in Queensland his thoughts on taking arms against the Gillard government (in any democracy, such talk is considered treason but there you go).
Murdoch’s Melbourne’s Herald Sun website published a comment that suggested ‘someone needs to assassinate Julia Gillard NOW before she totally destroys our way of life’. Shock jocks including Alan Jones allow such comments to go to air. Sorry, all irresponsible language that will ‘incite, encourage or present for its own sake violence or brutality’. This is an infringement of the Australian Communications and Media Authority’s (ACMA) Code of Conduct.
I have heard of people referring to our Prime Minister in the most sinister misogynist language that is offensive to our ideals of a compassionate, democratic society and disrespectful to our PM and all women. I can’t bring myself to repeat the vile comments.
With the Cronulla riots we saw how comments from Alan Jones contributed to the blind hatred and violence in a beach-side Sydney suburb.
It’s an appalling state of affairs that, as Australians who believe in the fair go, we should permit the hate speak to be presented in the media as factual comment.
It’s time for all Australians who understand and believe in the success of our multicultural society (the sheer wonder of the celebration of difference that most Australians embrace) to write letters to the editor, to call the hate-filled shock jocks and state reasonable arguments, or better still, to write to the ACMA and complain about all the comments that incite people to hatred, violence and dumb brutality.
We can’t allow the deterioration of our wonderful society. What a shame that Norway and their peace-loving, compassionate people have had this happen to them. Let’s make sure it doesn’t happen in Australia.