Thursday, 26 January 2012

My Country, Right Or Wrong

If Australian culture was really the best possible culture, then there would be no need to try to protect Australian culture - it would just be protecting good culture. Likewise, if Australian values were really good values to hold, then there would be no need to protect Australian values - it would just be protecting good values.


There's a certain irony in jingoistic behaviour, that it enshrines Australian values and reduces it to a form of tribalism. There's an even greater irony when the enforcement of this jingoism is accompanied with lip service to the notion that freedom of expression is part of the values they are protecting. That freedom, it seems, extends to everyone who will say how fucking great Australia really is.

For all the talk of foreigners taking over Australia and trying to enforce their values on us, it's not the forigners who are trying to force their culture onto others - it's the idiots draped in Australian flags complaining about the foreign incursion. The foreigners are the scapegoats for multiculturalism, for the widening of the cultural narrative to recognise that there's more than one way to live.

I challenged someone yesterday about what she meant by foreigners pushing their way of life onto us - the response was that we're not allowed to play Christmas carols in shopping centres or do Christmas in schools, have to sing "baa baa rainbow sheep" instead of "baa baa black sheep", and being called racist for displaying Australian flags. What. The. Fuck?! That's got very little to do with foreigners, it's just listing off gripes about political correctness.

That racist idiots drape themselves in the flag and proudly declare that their narrow view of culture is what we should all aspire to - or find a new residence is part of the reason why there's an association built up between flags and racism. Flag waving has that inevitable pull towards the extreme as it's the extreme that tries to own flag waving. Instead of complaining at foreigners, why not complain at all the idiots who use the flag as part of their racism?

It's not foreigners who are trying to push their way of life onto me, it's entitled Australians who are. They're the ones trying to define being Australian in such narrow terms, and wanting to push their way of life onto others.


If being Australian is about freedom of speech and freedom of expression, as those bigots say they are for, then the foreign incursion is only a problem in so far that it tries to stifle those values. And when foreigners do that, I'll stand alongside all those trying to stop such a travesty. But if those values are really Australian values, then we should rail against the bigots who do no more than pay lip service to them.

Is it that I need to say "my country, right or wrong" or seek foreign citizenship? Is Australian value merely tribalism with a veneer of enlightenment? I hope not, and I really don't think it does come down to that. They wouldn't have to fight so hard for the narrowing of the cultural narrative if the tide was turning away from such small-mindedness.

3 comments:

Rick DeLano said...

Kel, the irony is just too delicious......

"So Much For Freedom Of Expression".

Couldn't resist.

Rick DeLano said...

Hi Kel:

I keep picking up traffic from John Loftus' No Free Thought blog, and lo and behold!

I popped over today and you folks are *still* talking about me, weeks after having banned me.

I thought this would make an excellent addition to your next album:

"Now this looks like a job for me
So everybody just follow me
'Cause we need a little controversy
'Cause it feels so empty without me
I said, this looks like a job for me
So everybody just follow me
'Cause we need a little controversy
'Cause it feels so empty without me"

Say hi to everyone over at No Free Thought blog.

Kel said...

Rick, I couldn't give a shit about you getting banned over at Debunking Christianity. It's John Loftus' blog, not mine, and the fact that many Christians post there without getting banned probably says more about your behaviour on there than it does your message. I've had plenty of discussions on there with theists of all stripes, and they've seemed to be able to not get banned...

If you want to comment on this blog, then comment on the content - not on the happenings of other blogs. If you want to complain about your mistreatment at Debunking Christianity, you have your own blog for that. But you're welcome to comment here provided you stay on topic.