‘Malcolm Goes to the Mosque’
...sounds like a children’s story book title doesn’t it?
Kirralie Smith is the creator of the halal choices website, shopping guide book and phone app and an expert on halal certification of foods and supermarkets in Australia www.halalchoices.com.au
Sadly it is not. This is a case of our prime minister treating us all as ignorant little children. He seems to have forgotten the inconvenient truth that most of us are indeed adults, with a brain.
On Monday the prime minister visited the Islamic Council of Victoria, no PM has done so since the 1980's. That was right after he became the first PM to go to Mardi Gras. In the space of a few days Malcolm single-handedly managed to alienate a larger number of conservative voters than ever before, driving them out of the LNP fold and into the arms of other parties.
It is not so much the fact that he went to the Mardi Gras or supports gay marriage that is the issue, what many voters can’t stomach is his condescending attitude to anyone who holds an informed view that differs to his. We are all entitled to our opinion and we are all entitled to discuss our views in a reasonable and respectful manner.
When it comes to the Islamic Council of Victoria it is not so much the fact he visited there, it is what he chose to say while he was there. Islamic communities in Australia are very divisive. Many actively refuse to integrate. Islamic communities and mosques in particular practise segregation of Muslims and the rest of us, men vs women, halal vs haram, and many wear divisive garb as an ‘in-your-face’ statement rejecting integration and promoting apartheid.
On Monday Malcolm visited the mosque and he is actually quoted as saying to the Muslim group assembled, "You are an integral part of an Australian family that’s bound together by the shared values of freedom, democracy and the rule of law.”
The shared values of freedom? Really Malcom? What about the young Muslim girls forced to wear a hijab, burqa or niqab against their will. Where is the shared value of freedom for some of the Islamic girls who are not allowed to walk the streets unless they are chaperoned by a male relative?
The shared values of democracy? It was recently reported that the Australian Defence Force published a handbook on Islam with links to Islamic websites that instruct Muslims to be a part of democracy only in ways that help them to destroy democracy.
How is it an expression of democracy to label anyone concerned about Islam in Australia a bigot, racist or Islamaphobe? Every other ‘ism’ is on the table to criticise except Islam. We are already being held to a soft form blasphemy law by being censored in debates about Islam itself.
The rule of law is a shared value? Which law Malcolm, you didn’t make that very clear. Were you referring to Australian democratic law or Sharia law? The girls who fear being taken to Pakistan for the summer holidays and being married off under age, arranged by their parents, are not experiencing our rule of law.
A tiny handful of people have been prosecuted in this country for FGM and yet hundreds of girls in this country have been victims of this horrific practice. Doesn’t sound like the rule of law to me. Australian democratic law is not being upheld in the Sharia law style courts operating illegally in this country where women are disadvantaged in divorce, inheritance and custody matters.
Malcolm’s condescending tone and inability to have a mature, vigorous and honest conversation about Islam is as pathetic as his inability to make decisions and to govern the country. Still no policy for economic recovery, getting water to towns like Broken Hill, or improving educational outcomes for our students but we are all lectured about the benefits of special interest and minority groups that are actually divisive and a threat to social cohesiveness.