Random Note #198,621 — Multiculturalism
I recall when reading the Mark Lopez book The Origins of Multiculturalism in Australia, 1945 to 1975 when it was first publish back in 2000 how it firmed up my suspicions and thinking on this toxic policy and where we were headed. To many of us this was all so obvious and predictable. Even the clinical but clunky, bureaucratic name itself had something of the feel of a laboratory, rat treadmill experiment about it.
It was always just the disguised, skirted scaffolding erected around the superstructure of the nation to bring about the ultimate demolition of Australian identity, culture and society and I’m amazed that more people couldn’t see past the rich, vibrant, colourful fabric of multiculturalism, beyond the dance, the dress, the cuisine and now the bollards. That’s right the bollards. They too are part of the legacy of unbridled, turbocharged multiculturalism.
The following is and extract from Janet Albrechtsen’s column in The Weekend Australian.
“…Where does this end? The truth is no one knows, but a few things are clear. First, too many people have turned away from liberal ideas that sought to unite us regardless of colour, religion, gender and other markers that divide people. And second, multiculturalism hasn’t worked out as planned. The word used as a feel-good descriptor of a happy and cohesive Australia hasn’t been the unifying policy that politicians, activists and bureaucrats promised more than 40 years ago. Instead, it’s clear multiculturalism is the misguided parent policy of the new politics of division.
That’s no great surprise because multiculturalism was never a mainstream unifying policy. It was pushed upon us by a small group of activists on the fringe of politics in the 1970s.
As sociologist Katharine Betts has written, multiculturalism was the hobby horse of a group of Anglo-Australian lobbyists and “most of them could and did meet in one room”. Recruited to the cause, Malcolm Fraser included multiculturalism in the Coalition’s 1974 platform and it became official government policy the following year.
Worse was to come when this ill-conceived policy spawned more virulently divisive fads and movements premised on separating people. Victimhood feelings and the right not to be offended by words became the new measure of a recalibrated set of so-called human rights. Sure enough, bureaucracies such as the Australian Human Rights Commission became pedlars of censorship rather than defenders of free speech.
The postmodern world has become so censorious of free speech that academics who veer from some orthodoxy about race or gender politics are hounded off university campuses. It’s another strike against the liberal project.
Brick by brick, these illiberal movements — from the bastardisation of human rights to victimhood politics and postmodernism — have been built on foundations laid by multiculturalism.
A few years ago, a former boss of Britain’s Equality and Human Rights Commission, Trevor Phillips, said the West was “sleepwalking to segregation”. In his final book, Who Are We?, Samuel Huntingdon wrote that multiculturalism was “basically an anti-Western ideology”.
Blind to the warnings, we continue to move away from a social contract that once bound people together by expecting majority tolerance, minority loyalty and vigilance in both directions. A decade of weak political leadership in this country has only emboldened the cultural dietitians, as former prime minister John Howard once called them….”