The behaviour of a small group of self-professed “real Australians” towards an Australian Senator who was quietly enjoying meal in a pub with some colleagues and other friends is making news at the moment. And rightly so.
Their behaviour is, quite simply, appalling.
There can be no excuse, none whatsoever, for the kind of behaviour exhibited by these “men”, who despite protesting that they were exercising their ‘right’ to free speech (there is no such ‘right’ in existence in Australia) were simply being bigots, bullies, and yobbos.
The rise of so-called “real Aussies”, exemplified by groups such as those who verbally assaulted (at the very least) the Australian Senator in question, has been enabled by the rise of certain political parties in Australia. And it is not something to be celebrated. Ignorance and abuse have replaced knowledge and respect; dialogue has been gazumped by insult.
It is time for the ordinary decent Australian to stand up and call these buffoons for what they are: an embarassment to the Australian way of life, a scourge on true Australian society, a bunch of yobbos who deliberately choose to remain ignorant of the truth.
The self-assurance and calm of the Australian Senator and his colleagues is remarkable yet not unsurprising. It is, as is intimated by the Senator, not the first time he has been so accosted. Being in the public sphere means that the Senator is probably well prepared for such eventualities.
But what of the child on the school ground? What of the woman on public transport? What of the old man walking in the streets?
How are people who are less prepared than the Australian Senator going to react when they encounter the kind of thuggery he did?
Real Australians, of course, will be there, unafraid to call out the thuggery, and to assist a fellow human being who is being exposed to public ridicule and abuse of this kind. To do so is the true mark of Australianness.
Stand up, Australia, and be counted! Stand up for the true values of Australia. Stand up against bigots, bullies and yobbos.