The ABC’sÂ Q&AÂ on Monday threw petrol onto the fire by getting together Muslim firebrands and others to portray Australia as a country run by war criminals and xenophobes, helping to kill Muslims abroad and persecute them at home with politically motived police raids.
One of the most savage indictments of Australia and its institutions came fromÂ an unnamed woman in the audience. Note how the Greens and Labor MPs tended to believe and endorse her incendiary claims, and host Tony Jones even assumed the woman was being persecuted by ASIO::
AUDIENCE MEMBER: [The Australian Defence League] make threats to myself and my family, telling them that they want to behead me. So everything you’re saying right now is very insulting.
MICHAEL KEENAN [Justice Minister]: Well, if that is the case, then you need to alert the authorities.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: I have reported it to police numerous times, thank you.
MICHAEL KEENAN: Well, let me assure you, we don’t police in a way in this country that targets one group over another.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Yes, you do.
MICHAEL KEENAN: I can assure you that that is the case.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Yes, you do.
MICHAEL KEENAN: Well…
SCOTT LUDLAM [Greens Senator]: I’m not sure the message is getting through, whether you sense the reaction of the room when you said that for the first time. I’m not sure, if that is the strategy, that it’s getting through to people…
MICHAEL KEENAN: We do not target the Muslim…
TONY JONES: Michael Keenan, can I just interrupt for a second, because that was a pretty extraordinary allegation. I’d just like you to – are you saying that an official of the security forces did this?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: I reported it to Bankstown Police Station on numerous occasions. They’ve called to slit my – the – my – my children’s throats and rape my dead ‘caucus’ on the side of the road.
MICHAEL KEENAN: Well…
TONY JONES: So are you’re saying – sorry, you’re saying this is coming from racist groups?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Yes.
MICHAEL KEENAN: Well, I mean, I can assure you that threats of that nature would be followed up.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: I am trolled 24 hours a day on Facebook and social media because of these right-wing Nazis, okay. My life is not pleasant right now living in this country and no-one seems to care because I am Muslim and they’re not. It’s all right for the non-Muslims to give me a hard time.
MICHAEL KEENAN: Well, it’s not.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: But when I complain about it, it’s not the same.
MICHAEL KEENAN: It is absolutely not. Look, there’s absolutely no excuse for anyone in the community to attack another Australian in an unprovoked way.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Well, I’d like to see the evidence that you are actually doing something about it…
TONY JONES: I’m just confirming you’re not saying that was security officials. You’re saying that was a racist group that’s made these threats against you?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Well, it – look, it’s the ADL, yes.
MICHAEL KEENAN: Well, I can assure you that will be followed up.
TONY JONES: Right, I beg your pardon. You said ADL. I thought you said ASIO. Okay, no, I thank you – thank you so much…
MICHAEL KEENAN: For clarifying.
TONY JONES: Thank you so much for clarifying that. But we’ve got a question on a similar – we’ve got – I’m sorry, that was a misunderstanding. We’ve got a question on a similar subject. It’s from Asme Fahmi…
MARK DREYFUS [Labor’s shadow attorney-general]: …The police investigate crimes and threatened crimes wherever they occur but the fact that some people, including many people in this audience, have the impression that there is uneven policing raises, for me, a really big question which is about confidence in our agencies, confidence in the intelligence work, confidence in the police, and part of the job of Government and part of the job of every politician in Australia is to make sure that the community has that confidence and I fear, from what you’ve said and what you’ve also said, Asme, is that there’s a gap. Clearly, there is a gap. There’s a whole lot more work to be done and it fits together, as it happens, with countering violence extremism.
In fact, the unnamed woman is Rebecca Kay, an
activist Mohammedan agitprop andÂ convert:
She was alsoÂ a guest in another TV debateÂ to discuss a violent riot by Muslim protesters in 2012 and leaped to some wild conclusions:
Joe Hildebrand says all the acceptable things about the Sydney riot – unrepresentative minority, protest hijacked, most Muslims reject the violence, the Koran preaches peace (well, “mostly”) – yet he still cops it in the Today Tonight debate from a Muslim lady who was at the protest with her children:
Rebecca Kay: But it’s very easy for people to say like, Joe, no offence, Joe, to say that. You have restrictions against your religion. You can’t say anything bad about Jewish people. We don’t have them kind of protections.
Hildebrand:Â I’m not Jewish.
Kay: Oh, aren’t you? Are you sure?
The mistake is funny. But what is not funny is that Kay thought Joe’s perfectly sane criticism of the protest was driven by his alleged Jewish faith – and that Jews have protections here that Muslims don’t.
No, not funny at all.
Think I read too much into that? Here Kay again, from 4:28:
It takes two to tango… The police force was equally as aggressive.
And here Kay explains away the infamous picture of a mother at the protest photographing her child holding up a sign calling for the beheading of those who offend Mohammad:
I personally believe that that sign was left on the floor for that child to pick it up.
I would like to know the other side of the story before believing her allegations of police ignoring lurid threats to kill her.
I’d also like to know how Kay came to be in the audience, and why she was not identified, allowing her to seem like some typical Muslim woman just vilified and threatened as she went on her quiet way.
And that goes to the wider issue: how and why did the ABC get together such a collection of Muslim firebrands savaging Australia? How grossly irresponsible to give viewers the impression that every Muslim in our country was like every Muslim on Q&A – militant, damning of Australia and full of excuses for extremists.Â How dangerous to give any extremists the idea that their rage against this wicked country was justified.