Thursday, August 13, 2009

How Indian TV explains student attacks


Face the Nation is an Indian current affairs show. It featured recently a discussion about the attacks on Indian students in Melbourne and Sydney.

The program's host blamed the violence on Australians still holding to an illegitimate white and Western identity rather than embracing multiculturalism. She introduced the discussion by asking:

So has Australia actually been able to create multiculturalism within its society? ... we're asking the question: are countries like Australia still imprisoned in a whites only mindset? You're telling us at the start of the show, 71% are saying yes, well that's a very decisive verdict, 71% seem to know that this is in fact the case ...


The panel members ran with similar arguments about the violence:

Srivastava argued that the Australians are confused over their identity as a nation.

“There is resistance in certain sections to a multi-cultural Australia."


What's wrong with framing the issue this way? First, it's presumptuous for Indians to declare the traditional national identity of another country to be illegitimate - as a "prison" to be escaped from. It's not exactly reassuring for white Australians to be told that we are to switch our allegiance from our traditional Western allies to the emerging Asian powers when there are such hostile views towards us within these countries.

Second, the framing of the debate puts things exactly the wrong way round. It is not traditional Australia which is attacking the Indian students but modern multicultural Australia.

Take the most recent attack on an Indian in Melbourne. The attackers were members of a Vietnamese gang who on the same night bashed a Brisbane tourist, Jeff Pooler, putting him in a coma in intensive care.

The police have also revealed that most of those who have committed violent assaults in the city come from the northern suburbs of Melbourne. I'll list the suburbs which produce the most offenders and put in brackets the percentage of households where only English is spoken (2006 census data): Reservoir (49%), St Albans (28%), Craigieburn (70%), Broadmeadows (41%), Hoppers Crossing (72%), Sunshine (37%), Coburg (50%), Glenroy (53%) and Coolaroo (44%). On average 49% of households in these suburbs speak only English at home. So the violence is again associated with multiculturalism - making it seem odd to recommend multiculturalism as a solution to attacks on Indian students.

How is the media explaining the violence? So far Dr Birrell of Monash University is the only one I've seen who has recognised the link to multiculturalism. He was quoted as arguing that,

Indian students had come under attack as enrolments boomed, pushing them into less affluent suburbs of Sydney and Melbourne where they competed for jobs and housing with youth from low-skill migrant backgrounds.


I'm sceptical that competition for jobs and housing has much to do with it, but at least Dr Birrell recognises the demographic reality.

The Lord Mayor of Melbourne, Robert Doyle, has chosen to blame bogans for the attacks. Overseas readers may not be aware of what the term bogan means: it usually refers to culturally unsophisticated, working-class white Australians. Other figures have started to blame poverty and disadvantage. But none of this makes much sense.

After all, back in the early 1980s there were bogans and there was poverty. Even so, you could go pretty much anywhere anytime in Melbourne. I can remember thinking with some pride back then that for such a large city Melbourne was remarkably safe. I don't recall ever meeting hostility or aggression from the working class Australians of that time. I found them easy to get along with.

So what changed? Again, we shouldn't ignore the effects of multiculturalism. Within traditional Australian culture there were certain rules of engagement when it came to violence. It was unusual for weapons to be used in fights. The fights were usually one on one. It was thought cowardly to king hit (sucker punch). It would have been thought vicious to kick an unconscious opponent in the head. Looking at someone the wrong way was not thought to be sufficient provocation for an attack. A drunk person mouthing off was not generally thought to have invited upon himself a bashing.

Clearly for some cultures these rules do not apply. It has now become dangerous to follow the traditional culture, as a man who is worse for wear, alone and expecting a fair fight has become exceptionally vulnerable to attack - particularly if he is not aware that there are some groups who might target him as a rival.

So the Indian media pundits have it wrong. They have blamed a traditional Australian identity for street violence and recommended multiculturalism as a cure. But the violence is more closely associated with the newer, multicultural areas of our cities. As I wrote earlier, the Indian journalists have things exactly the wrong way around.

17 comments:

  1. Never mind ozconservative, Indian media just like any other country shows what viewers like to see. this show is anyway dumb.

    - an indian

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  2. This is a good article which gives some solid demographic statistics.

    However, if this is true, then the politically correct Australian media and politicians are more to blame than their Indian counterparts in this issue. If the former had been upfront about the real identity of the attackers, the Indian media wouldn't have had to assume it was traditional Australian culture that was bashing Indian students.

    You can't expect Indians living thousands of miles away to know it is multiculturalism, not traditional white Australians, that is responsible for the violence. The onus is on Australia to show this.

    Note that in Asia, Australia is still (unfairly) stained by its treatment of Aborigines, the White Australia policy, and Pauline Hanson.

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  3. Indian media is a lump of intellectual excreta.

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  4. Why is Australia's historic identity as a white, Western nation considered illegitimate? Why does every other country in the world have the right to preserve its identity but Australia has not?

    No one, for example, questions the right of Indians to have an Indian nation and to exclude other, non-Indian racial groups from their national community. Nobody questions the legitimacy of their exclusionary national identity. Nobody questions India's race-based immigration policies which favour people of Indian ancestry abroad, while specifically excluding any white people born in India.

    Why is India not said to be "imprisoned in a browns-only mindset?"

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  5. Why is Australia's historic identity as a white, Western nation considered illegitimate?

    Why indeed?

    Indias identity as a predominantly Hindu nation is also highly controversial, considering the amount of people who have died and continue to die because of it.

    Why is our traditional identity wrong but theirs right?

    I dont blame the indian media, why would they defend our people, our culture and our way of life when our own elites hate it so much?

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  6. You can't expect Indians living thousands of miles away to know it is multiculturalism, not traditional white Australians, that is responsible for the violence. The onus is on Australia to show this.

    I would think the onus would be on Indian journalists to attend to some pretty basic reporting duties. If I, sitting 10,000 miles away in North America, have for some time now been aware of who the perps are in this spate of attacks on Indian nationals, I would think that "professionals" should have been able to uncover this information. Maybe the "onus" should be on some people getting over there puerile "bash whitey" impulses and doing their jobs?

    Note that in Asia, Australia is still (unfairly) stained by its treatment of Aborigines, the White Australia policy, and Pauline Hanson.

    Hilarious. As if any Asian nation has any moral ground to stand on in criticizing Australia's treatment of any group. And why meddling hypocritical racist Asians think Australia owes them some kind of explanation or apology for "White Australia" or Pauline Hanson, I do not know.

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  7. Wow, how good to see a post like this!
    It is clear and obvious to any sane, sensitive person that multi-cultural/multi-ethnic/multi-racial experiment forced upon Australia in recent years is a total failure, as it only could be.
    Anyone with a working set of eyes sees the news footage and can see the obvious image of Asian, Islander and other ethnic gangs instigating the vast majority of strife and violence, particularly against this new horde of Indians who have flooded in.
    All these peoples brought in, allegedly to grace us with their "culture" are used to, and have absolutely no qualms about indulging in the most mindless, brutal violence.
    And then Australians, real, white, British Australians, are labelled "racist" because this violence happens here, and labelled "racist" again if we speak up against what is being done to our country.
    We must preserve and safeguard ourselves. It's not too late to start with a program of deportations.
    Thank you for telling some truth like this.

    Scott.

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  8. "Why is Australia's historic identity as a white, Western nation considered illegitimate?"

    Because 'white Australians' are actually just European immigrants.

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  9. It's not the Indian media we should be annoyed at, they are simply standing up for their own people - something which our own politicians are unable or unwilling to do.

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  10. "it is multiculturalism, not traditional white Australians, that is responsible for the violence."

    Hang on a sec... so when an Australian of migrant background bashes an Indian, you say this is a fault of multiculturalism. But when a "traditional" (Anglo) Australian bashes an Indian, is this also a fault of multiculturalism?

    A white guy from Lilydale king-hit a police officer on the weekend, breaking his nose. Terrible thing, obviously, but nothing to do with race. But had the perp been a black guy from Flemington, that's a result of race and multiculturalism, right?

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  11. "Because 'white Australians' are actually just European immigrants."

    What a moronic comment.

    The mostly English, Irish, and Scottish settlers of colonial times, the ancestors of Australia’s historic Anglo-Celtic majority, did not simply transplant themselves from one existing nation to another (which is what defines immigration), but from the British Isles to a new territory where no nation or civilisation previously existed. They were not immigrants, but settlers.

    There was absolutely nothing here when the early settlers first arrived. It was the settlers who cast the die and laid the foundations for the modern Australian nation. It was the hardwork and innovation of these settlers that transformed an arid, inhospitable wasteland into the prosperous, stable and relatively free country than we enjoy today.

    Whether you like it or not, the Australian nation was created and built by white, Anglo-Celtic Australians. Thus, to label them mere "immigrants", as if to imply that they have no more right to Australia than some newly-arrived Third Worlder, is to grossly insult the founding majority people of this country.

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  12. "It's not the Indian media we should be annoyed at, they are simply standing up for their own people - something which our own politicians are unable or unwilling to do."

    Whether it be pandering to minorities, or championing high immigration, most of our politicians are actively working against the interests of the white Australian majority.

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  13. "Note that in Asia, Australia is still (unfairly) stained by its treatment of Aborigines, the White Australia policy, and Pauline Hanson."

    Oh yes, because Asian countries are shining exemplars of tolerance toward ethnic minorities and immigrants.

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  14. Eurasian Sensation,

    The argument I made isn't disproven by your finding a case of an Anglo offender from Lilydale. I'm fully aware that there are Anglo offenders. There will probably be more in the future as the new climate takes hold.

    But what's happening now isn't a hold out of traditional Australia to be overcome once we embrace a multicultural future. It is a product of multicultural Australia, as evidenced by the location statistics I provided, by the tendency of Anglos to be victims rather than perpetrators and by the change in the culture of violence (I don't like the way you looked at me so the seven of us will bash you etc).

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  15. "Asian countries are shining exemplars of tolerance toward ethnic minorities and immigrants"

    Indeed. I have a mate who lives in Thailand. He's married to a Thai national, has two Thai-born kids and runs a business employing locals. And yet, last time I saw him he was still on a tourist visa because the Thais make it practically impossible for anyone who isn't Thai to get a PR visa.

    And yet not long ago the Bangkok Post was berating us for Hanson and calling us racists. The hypocrisy is breathtaking.

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  16. And yet not long ago the Bangkok Post was berating us for Hanson and calling us racists. The hypocrisy is breathtaking.

    Indeed. Every country in Asia tightly restricts immigration in order to keep out other ethnic groups. While an Asian immigrant can come to Australia and expect to eventually become a citizen, an Australian of European descent has virtually no chance of ever aquiring the citizenship of any Asian country.

    "Non-discrimination", it seems, is a one-way street.

    As Geoffrey Blainey put it, "Our immigration policy is increasingly based on an appeal to international precepts that our neighbours sensibly refuse to practice. We are surrendering much of our own independence to a phantom opinion [that ethnicity is irrelevant] that floats vaguely in the air and rarely exists on this earth. We should think very carefully about the perils of converting Australia into a giant multicultural laboratory for the assumed benefit of the peoples of the world."

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