Australia is the best country in the world…?

I love my country. Sometimes I marvel at how I’ve won the lottery of life, being born here in the lucky country, the land of opportunity.

When I started travelling, I realised that my passport is one of my most precious possessions. Wherever I go in the world, I carry the golden ticket: a document saying I belong in Australia – that they will always let me come home.

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But recently something has changed.

I was talking to a new friend who grew up in Iran. As a teenager, he left a war-torn country, having witnessed unbelievable horrors, for a new life in Australia.

He worked hard to overcome barriers of language and culture. He studied late into the night, earned a degree, and won a government job. You’d think he’d had it made, but it broke my heart when he said that if he ever had children, he wouldn’t raise them here. He’d rather take them back to the war-torn Middle East than put them through the daily racism he faces. After twelve years, he still feels like an outsider – ignored, bullied, excluded, slapped with religious slurs – even though he’s never been Muslim. For the first time, I felt ashamed to be Australian.

I look at our indigenous people, who, according to the UN, have the second worst quality of life in the world, and I wonder about our lucky country.

Australia is the best country in the world… for me. But I’m not the only one who lives here.

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Apologies, my last Post hadn’t quite evolved enough…

189883_7260I’m comparing my post the other day to the impulse purchase of a hair product. I see something that looks new and interesting, that appears to be organic, and that promises to cater to my taming-curly-hair needs. I buy the product in a moment of inspiration and use it once, after which it sits in the back of my cupboard until long after the use-by date.

The other day I read an article that appeared interesting, that lined up with my frustrations with evolution and that seemed to present a worthy argument. And within the hour I had blogged about it.

However, as has been brought to my attention, my argument that evolution is responsible for a certain brand of racism is as petty as those who argue that religion is responsible for most of the world’s wars. Yes, there are connections, but the real problem is in the hearts of humanity. I used an example of one racist word to accuse evolution of being intrinsically racist. Not a wise move.

I’m still a creationist. I still get frustrated with the theory of evolution, which, while being based on science, makes gigantic guesses, going back millions of years, and indoctrinates the next generations with supposed facts about their meaning and origins. I believe creationism is based on equally valid science, but next time, I’ll make sure I have done my research.

So, for now, I’ll just post about the weather. That is until someone introduces a new brand of mousse.

Calling Someone an ‘Ape’ is only Racist if Evolution isn’t true.

Anonymous_evolution_stepsAustralian Football has recently played host to a racism saga that has attracted huge media attention. One of our Indigenous players was called an ‘ape’ by a young female spectator. She was escorted out of the stadium, and he sat out for the rest of the game. The saga was further complicated some time later when the president of the opposing team made an outrageously stupid comment alluding to it on national radio.

I had only mild interest in this issue until I read this article which makes some incredibly valid points about the offensiveness of the original comment. There is no question that calling someone an ‘ape’ is rude. It shouldn’t have been said. But is it really racist?

Calling a white person an ape isn’t considered racist, but things suddenly change when the person is coloured. Why is that?

According to evolutionary theory, humans came from apes, and it has historically been portrayed that the ‘black man’ is closer in the chain to the ape than the ‘white man.’

Evolutionarily speaking then, calling someone an ape means rudely suggesting that they are less ‘evolved’ than their white counterparts. This crosses a social taboo, but if it’s racist then so is evolution. According to evolutionary roots we are not all equal, but somehow pointing that out in public is an atrocity.

Maybe it’s time to re-evaluate our origins, and realize that claiming evolutionary theory as fact, may have much wider ramifications than what we’re willing to accept.

 

If you read this post, please read my follow-up post: Apologies, my last Post hadn’t quite evolved enough.