Australia – A Country Of Woke Intolerance
This Article Highlights Intolerance
This article is different to others on this site, as it does not cover any of the six categories listed. It was written to highlight how intolerant many Australians have become. Are we becoming a country of woke intolerance? On the ABC television program Q&A early this month, there was a discussion about the Russia-Ukraine conflict. The host took a question from a member of the audience, Sasha Gillies-Lekakis. The audience member felt the media narrative was very one-sided, suggesting there were two sides to the story and that many people in the Russian community within Australia and around the world supported what Putin is doing in the Ukraine, as he did.
A discussion ensued. However, the issue of a one-sided media narrative itself was not the topic of discussion. The host, Stan Grant, posed the question about moral equivalence to Liberal MP Jason Falinski. His response was, “there is no moral equivalency to murder. Just because someone is murdered does not give you the right to murder someone else.”
Has Falinski Frogotten 9/11?
Falinski is old enough to remember the attack on the Twin Towers of the World Trade Centre on 11th September, 2001. What ensued in Afghanistan and Pakistan was exactly what he said was not justified. I wonder what Falinski’s views on the US response was?
Sovereignty Of A Nation Over-Ridden
Falinski went on: “Secondly, the sovereignty of a nation cannot be simply wiped out simply because one individual – without evidence – decides to do that.”
Sounds fair enough, until you think of Iraq and the coalition of the willing. That’s exactly what Bush decided to do. Blair, Howard, et al, jumped on board. Yep, Australia was culpable. What are Falinski’s views on that? Did he voice opposition?
Some 20 minutes later – without Gillies-Lekakis being further involved in the discussion – Stan Grant decided to throw him out for “advocating violence,” and apologized for not throwing him out sooner. There was significant applause from the audience.
This sounds to me like Grant was drawing a very long bow.
Sasha’s question was:
“As someone who comes from the Russian community here in Australia, I’ve been pretty outraged by the narrative created by our media, depicting Ukraine as the good guy and Russia as the bad guy. Believe it or not, there are a lot of Russians here and around the world that support what Putin’s doing in Ukraine, myself included,” he said.
“Since 2014, the Ukrainian government, together with Nazi groups like the Azov Battalion, have besieged the Russian populations in the Dombas, killing an estimated 13,000 people. According to the United Nations.”
My question is – where was your outpouring of grief and concern for those thousands of mostly Russians?”
Interjections During The Question
There were interjections from the audience during the question, and Stan Grant cut him off at this point, correcting him on his timeline of the death count.
Later, on Facebook, Gillies-Lekakis clarified:
I was hoping to make the point that I support Putin’s grievances regarding the breaking of the Minsk Peace Agreement by the Ukraine, and the ensuing loss of life, particularly in the Russian-populated areas of the Donbas. My question, furthermore, sought to question why these Russian deaths were seemingly less important compared to Ukrainian casualties in our media coverage, and whether the panelists thought there was any hypocrisy in their positions as a result. This is reflected in my question as published on the QandA website. (https://www.abc.net.au/qanda/2022-03-03/13769842) Unfortunately, I was unable to fully finish asking my question nor clarify myself despite trying, and so believe that my words were misrepresented and incomplete.
The region has a long and complex history involving many peoples and the only way lasting peace can be achieved is through fostering genuine understanding and empathy on all sides. Such understandings cannot be achieved by creating simplistic media narratives of ‘good’ and ‘evil’ or, for that matter, by deliberately misrepresenting others or denying them a chance to speak and be part of the discussion.
Upon reflection, Gillies-Lekakis might wonder if asking the media directly if they – the media – thought the media is being hypocritical was ever going to end well for him.
We Have Become Intolerant
The QandA website had this editorial comment:
The point of Q+A is to bring together people with a range of widely divergent views and create a forum where they can have a civil and productive discussion despite their differences.
As the program developed, Stan Grant, a highly experienced presenter of live TV, was aware that other audience members were distressed. He decided the best course of action was for Mr Gillies-Lekakis to leave the studio. (https://www.abc.net.au/qanda/2022-03-03/13769842)
Aren’t These Double-Standards?
It seems to me that QandA were displaying double standards. Let’s bring these divergent views together, but let’s not really discuss them. Was the question (as far as was allowed) really so bad that people should become and remain “distressed”?
It may not be fair to say that QandA audience members are broadly representative of the Australian public, but it is not unfair to suggest that QandA is in many ways representative of our mainstream media.
Are we so precious that we refuse to allow dissenting views? Do we censor people just because their view does not agree with ours?
The answer is a resounding, “YES!” That’s exactly what we do. We censor and slander. If you are unlucky enough to live in Canada, it’s worse. Trudeau decided that the tens of thousands of people who were involved in the Ottawa protest were a “fringe minority,” held “unacceptable views,” and froze their bank accounts.
Right to peaceful protest? Democracy? Freedom of speech? They are going the way of the dodo. You should probably delete this website from your browsing history before you’re visited by some men from the government.
Post Script: Is it coincidence that the week after this episode aired, the program had it’s worst rating nationally since it first aired in 2008? Could it be that Australians just won’t tolerate intolerance? How woke is that!