Well we might just see something positive come out of the 18c inquiry after all.
Ian Goodenough, who chairs the inquiry, has made that very clear in today’s Australian:
“It is misleading to say that reforms to section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act will promote race hate speech, because there are already laws in place which prevent abusive or threatening speech,” he said. “Many mainstream Australians are resentful of the emerging culture of political correctness, which prevents them from expressing their opinions on certain sensitive cultural issues in workplace and social settings where minorities are involved.
“Anecdotally, there is a perception that certain ethnic minorities are afforded greater protections from constructive criticism than mainstream Australians through political correctness. Rightly or wrongly, this perception does exist, and I would like to see the playing field levelled.”
That’s exactly the point I made in my submission to the inquiry:
Racial violence is a serious issue and it should be dealt with by a serious law. However, a law that makes it impossible to discuss serious problems in relation to family dysfunction while also remaining silent on incitement to jihad against Jews or persons who do not support certain Islamic sects is not serious. Nor is it serving the Australian people.
The simple solution is to enforce existing criminal laws in relation to incitement to violence. These matters should be dealt with through various state criminal laws or under S80.2A and S80.2B of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth). If these current criminal laws are deficient then efforts should be made to rectify these deficiencies rather than tinkering with the Racial Discrimination Act 1975.
S.18C and S.18D of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 should be repealed.
The comments come as the 18c inquiry receives evidence from the Institute of Public Affairs showing that nearly half of Australians want 18c amended to remove the words ‘offend’ and ‘insult’. That makes sense, although I’m still confused by the finding that 38% of us like the idea of the government policing our political opinions and Facebook pages.
Meanwhile, Labor is doing its very best to be trumpolished at the next election by whining about ‘racism’ that simply does not exist. Graham Perrett speaks:
But the deputy chair of the inquiry, Labor MP Graham Perrett, said evidence given to a hearing in Hobart yesterday from Equal Opportunity Tasmania, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law and the University of Tasmania was “overwhelmingly in favour of keeping the current protections” in section 18C.
“The committee heard that racism, including ‘everyday racism’ caused widespread damage to Aboriginal and culturally and linguistically diverse Australians and their communities,” he said.
“As parliamentarians in positions of relative power, it would be arrogant and irresponsible for us to assume we could have any understanding of what it is like to face the type of racism experienced by many Australians every day.”
Perrett’s frothing at the mouth and the inquiry hasn’t even heard from the Islamic groups yet. They are filling up the witness slots over the next two days. No doubt, by the end of the week Perrett will arrogantly be calling for protection of Sharia law in order to maintain community cohesion.
There is a solution for Graham. I suggest that he take an anti-arrogant pill, start acting responsibly and ponder what it’s like to have years of one’s life sucked into the anti-discrimination vortex by a serial complainant who bandies one’s address about with Islamic organisations. That’s my lived experience of tolerance.