Oh. No. We're islamophobic!!Please excuse me while I pick myself up off the floor in horror. I'm shocked - shocked! - I tell you.
I don't know how we, as a country, will ever recover from the shame of Yvonne Ridley's pronouncement.
She is, of course, the most famous living example of Stockholm Syndrome, which tends to leave her credibility a bit lacking.
Actually, here in Australia, her credibility is near to non-existent. When Kevin Rudd, our current leader of the Opposition is questioning why on earth she was allowed into the country, you know there's something going on.
So how islamophobic are we?
Here are readers' comments to the article I first linked to.
A couple to whet your appetite for more:
Ms Ridley was held hostage by the taliban then converted to Islam in 2003 and now she is an expert on Islam and on who are the islamicphobics, she lives in the UK where she has all the freedom afforded to her by her country, Did she think the Taliban were sympathertc towards non Muslims? You notice none of these radical converts ever decide to live in a Muslim Country, they would see the light then and what rights women have
Here we go again. Is it any wonder that there is a phobic feeling towards Muslims in this country when we have people like this saying that terrorist are martyrs. The sad thing is that all Muslims become tared with the one brush and the hate for each others beliefs continues. It is unfortunate that this woman has been allowed to enter Australia to sprout her garbage.
Once again blah blah blah, lets see us aussies go to say an Arab country and set up one of our religous bases there, yer right as if. There would be no way we would be allowed to , if we went to another country we would have to abide by there way of life and if we did not then they would probably cut of one of our hands or possibly have our throat slit. Look if they want to migrate to our country to help us well great but lets be fairdinkum, this is Australia lets keep it that way if you want to move here well then you must convert to our way of life or **** off.
We welcom Muslims into this country, to th extent there are 300 000 here. All I hear from them is how we are racist and how we hate them.
I dont think that Aussies hate Muslims the most. I just think that Aussies are just more vocal about their concerns. Problems arise when concerns are not taken seriously or dealt with properly by our Government as that makes people irritated and angry. Australians are concerned about the amount of bending over backwards that our Government appears to do for some minority groups, even if it impacts negatively on Australians or is not supported by the majority of Australians. If the Government won't accept or address people's concerns, then the people are given no other choice than to resort to venting their frustration and anger.
I've not had a chance to read all of the comments, but that last copied above is my favourite.
There are plenty more, with a few bleatings in between.
No, we're not actually islamophobic here in Oz. What we are is angry, and getting angrier.
Our government does not seem to be listening to the wishes of the majority. Perhaps we've been silent for too long.
Now, of course, we're starting to speak up.
Once upon a time, we were all pretty much just aussies. I'm a skip - also known these days as an anglo-aussie. I have friends who are egyptian-aussie, and japanese-aussie, and slovenian-aussie. This is ridiculous, and the prefix has only come about in the last couple of years, with its usage ramping up since the Cronulla "riot".
Australians have a long tradition of being ratbags and larrikins. We are reknowned for thumbing our noses at authority - one of our Prime Ministers put his arm around the Queen of England! Okay, it was just a minor thing, but it nearly caused a diplomatic incident.
Basically, though, when it comes to religion, Authority, politics, what to wear, as a species, aussies really couldn't give a stuff.
Well, it used to be that way.
Over the last couple of decades, particularly the last few years (post-9/11), we are more concerned about religion, politics, Authority and what to wear.
There are a number of reasons, but the most visible one would have to be islam. There are the religious edicts on how often to pray, what to eat, how to dress, how islam itself should be addressed and especially how tolerant everyone should be of it.
The clerics are happy to go on national television and tell us that islamic law trumps Australian law.
Well, they were until people started getting a bit browned off with that attitude. Since then, it's all been context, context, context.
And since aussies of whatever stripe have very little tolerance for whingers, sooks and those who would have us live according to their direction, I think we'll find there will be a few more prominent apologists for islamic imperialism calling us islamphobic before too long.
Heh. My care factor?
And because one thing we do well here is take the piss, enjoy the following vid.