A very important article in Crikey hightlighting the abysmal rise of race-based ‘dog-whistling’ that has been seen in preponderance over the Christmas-New Year period, particularly from the new Minister for Home Affairs, the former Minister for Immigration and Border Protection (see the second story below). As the author, Christopher Warren, remarks, however, the ‘dog-whistle’ is no longer; it has been replaced something much more insidious.
The fallout of the Brexit referendum in the United Kingdom and the rise of the Trumpism in the United States has seen the advent of overt racism to replace to “subtle” dog-whistling, with ‘African gangs’ replacing the ‘Mexican’ for the Australian context.
The purpose of such actions, of which we have seen more than a few in Australia in recent weeks, is to appeal to both the prejudice and the fear that is present within the wider Australian context, to create a “problem” that those pointing it out can fix – as long as they are given the political authority to do so. And those who are not currently in political office refuse to oppose these kind of actions because to do so would mean they would be unsuccessful in their efforts to attain political office.
That the media – almost without exception unfortunately – seem to either fall for or actively contribute to the kind of actions being experienced is something to be regretted. Whether intended or not, such connivance means the innate conservatism of Australian society, by which I mean a resistance to change in a time of uncertainty, aids the current holders of political office to hold on to political office without any great effort.
And the loser is Australian society as a whole.