VICTORIANS now have newly guaranteed rights that will change how the law works – whether they want it or not.
The State Government’s Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities is now in force, and is binding on all Victorian public authorities, Victoria Police and the State of Victoria itself.
I was opposed to the charter on political grounds; it was my opinion that our basic rights and freedoms in Australia were well protected and there was no need for a charter.
I didn’t believe it should be introduced. But it is now the law, so we must all work with it.
(The charter is at http://www.justice.vic.gov.au/humanrights).
It lists a large number of so-called human rights, such as equality and right to life (but not for embryos).
It protects various freedoms: of movement, thought, conscience, religion and expression.
It prohibits torture and forced work.
It protects privacy and reputation, peaceful assembly, families and children, cultural and property rights, and all sorts of rights in the criminal process to ensure fair treatment and a fair trial.
The Charter will be enforced in two main ways. First, from now on, the courts must interpret all legislation (old or new) as compatible with human rights. The Supreme Court has power to effectively declare a law incompatible.
In those circumstances, politics would compel any government to immediately alter such a law found by the court to deny fundamental rights.
In this way, we have handed immense power to the unelected judges of the Supreme Court.
They can now, effectively, if not literally, strike down state laws which do not meet their standard of human rights.
We live in an age of political correctness and this is reflected in the personal and political views of the judges who are appointed.
We can now expect the judges to be even more activist: no longer is Parliament supreme. Every law made by Parliament can be challenged as breaching human rights.
* Why do these ABC types all look like they belong under a burka?
“It doesn’t look like a terrorist’s lair.”
* How many terrorists lair’s have you been to, Sally?
The occupant is a 54-year-old mother of six and grandmother of two, retired and living on a disability pension.
She doesn’t look like a terrorist.
* What does a terrorist look like, Sally?
But this is the most-watched woman in Australia, monitored for the past 20 years by ASIO and described by intelligence analysts as the “matriarch” of radical Islam in Australia. Rabiah Hutchinson snorts with laughter at the description. “They’ve got it wrong. I am not important. I’m just a 54-year-old granny with diabetes and arthritis. What are they so worried about?”
Ms Hutchinson has been closely watched by Australian authorities since October 2003, when she returned to Australia from Iran, where she had spent nearly two years in hiding after fleeing from Afghanistan amid the US bombing raids that followed the September 11, 2001, attacks in the US. Her passport was subsequently cancelled, based on advice from ASIO to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade that she was “likely to engage in conduct that might prejudice the security of Australia or of a foreign country (and) endanger the health and physical safety of others”.
Ms Hutchinson remains barred from travelling overseas, believes she is under constant ASIO surveillance and claims her family and friends are continually harassed.
After years of silence, she has decided to speak out to deny any involvement in terrorism and accuse the authorities of persecuting her and her family.
“It’s not just me they’re targeting. Now it’s my children and even my grandchildren,” Ms Hutchinson says. “It’s absolutely ridiculous – to think I had any personal knowledge of or contact with Sheik Osama bin Laden. I am absolutely nobody. I just happened to be there.”
“We just want somewhere to live, somewhere where we can be normal and live according to Allah’s laws.”
* ‘Allah’s laws’ means according to sharia. How ’bout shipping her off to Sowdi Arabia tomorrow, Miss Gillard? Mr. KRudd? Anybody home????
Ms Hutchinson scoffs at the suggestion that she poses a threat. She says the so-called “war on terror” is a war on Islam, and that she and her family are among its casualties.
* Right. And Sally Neighbour gobbles it up and swallows it as if it was a revelation from Muhammad himself: get a life, Sally! Wear a burka! Don’t miss out!