Monday, March 08, 2010

This really makes me angry.

There was the worst kind of tragic event in Melbourne a few days ago when a three year old child was found dead, dumped at the roadside twenty kilometres from his home.

He was a little boy called Gurshan Singh, who happened to be Indian and who was on holiday in Oz with his parents. Dad went out, mum was in the shower and it's thought the little boy wandered out through the front door.

Police said he was fully clothed, there were no signs of injury. A post mortem didn't reveal a cause of death, toxicology and forensic tests were being done and the investigation continued.

In spite of that the screams of racism began immediately.

To see the extent of the utter stupidity and bigotry of so many people, look at just one newspaper, the UK's Daily Mail.

The paper headlined the story with a racism slant:

"Murder of Indian boy, 3, in Australia sparks diplomatic row after spate of racist attacks"

That had the brainless bigots rushing from under their rocks.

Remember, little Gurshan Singh's body had only just been found, no cause of death had been established, he had no injuries, police had just begun their investigation.

A selection of the comments to the Mail's story:

"Racists killing three year olds? Sick and deeply disturbing." Alan, Planet Reality

"This has been happening for the past year! I'm a British born Indian and every time there is a racist attack on an Indian Student it is widely reported on the Indian news channel

A few weeks ago another Indian student in Australia was burnt alive in a racist attack."
shania, London.

(Actually Shania, an Indian couple has been charged with that murder. Don't let the facts get in the way of your bigotry though).

"How can someone's hatred of a race be so great as to kill an innocent 3 year old boy." Nat, London

"HOW can anyone do this? When will people realise we are essentially all the same. Skin colour? So what, there is just no excuse for racism these days" karen n, manchester

"Has Australia failed to embrace diversity more than any other country. Australia will have problems to attract visitors if these issues are not tackled promptly." Romi May, Handsworth

"I have always said Auustralia has concentrated racism." Mukeye, TO

"Perhaps the Aussies need to remember that they are in fact ALL immigrants!" Shorty, Suffolk

"Seriously , both America and Australia have massive problems related to self worth and hatred of ethnic minorities" john, China

"It never ceases to amaze me when I hear of racist attacks in these countries when the original inhabitants of those countries were blacks or dark skinned." ira, FL USA

People with more sense responded to the stupidity of such comments to say that the cause of death and, if it was murder, the motive had not been established.

So Shania came back screeching:

"To all of you saying this is isn't racist, YOU CLEARLY DO NOT KNOW THE FULL STORY!!!!!!!! I have been following the series of attacks this is just one of them. What about the attacks targeting Indians specifically from India??? you cannot say that is purely coincidence

I am not saying all Australians are racists but to dismiss this as not racism is noting but sheer ignorance."
shania, London

Shania knows what's going on, she's absolutely positive. And anyone who doesn't agree with her is showing their sheer ignorance.


And another bigot, the oxymoronically named 'truthspeaker' from Newcastle has the answer to it all:

"When will the authorities just admit that this is what happens when you try and force people together from very different races."

None of them are prepared to wait for the facts to emerge before shouting their version of the truth. They're not interested in the facts because they may contradict their bigotry.

The police carried out their investigation. Here's today's news:

"Toddler's death: housemate charged

A 23-YEAR-OLD Indian national has been charged with manslaughter due to criminal negligence following the death of three-year-old Gurshan Singh Channa.

Gursewak Dhillon, a taxi driver who is in Australia on a student's visa, was refused bail in an out-of-sessions hearing.

Dhillon had made admissions to police that he had placed the child in the boot of a car while the youngster was unconscious and had driven him to Oaklands Junction near Melbourne Airport and placed him by the roadside."

In the light of that, Shania, Alan, Nat, Karen N, Romi May, Mukeye, Shorty, John, Ira and the rest of you, would you care to add to your original comments?

You'll find the Daily Mail stupidity here and today's report on the arrest of Gursewak Dhillon here.

And my 'racism' tag has some previous posts on the subject of attacks on Indians in Australia.


Anonymous said...

So what do you think the new newspaper headlines should be?

'Indians killing each other in Australia'?

Australia has now, only in the last month, acknowledged that there is a racist slant on attacks on some Indians.

Even you admit that there is a racist tone to attacks on Indians. There are stray cases of other violence (Indian infighting, self-harming, plain mugging)... but it has been largely race-related. Before Indians there has been talk of prejudices against lebanese in particular and Muslims in general. Cronulla riots too.

The Howard Govt won the election after a campaign which has been universally condemned as racist by many prominent Australians, the United Nations and the international media.

Even in the largely race-free world of cricket, the Australian team came under flak for their ungentlemanly behaviour against India.

So, yes, anytime an Indian is attacked in Australia, it adds to this general sense of ill-being.

If this over-vigilant media had not hyped these (with Shanias-Tanias becoming opinionated), the government would have probably never acknowlegded them.

Yes, we should be carefully examine each incident before proclaiming it racist or sexist or any ist but its okay for public opinion to be based on the larger picture for any change to happen.

Seabee said...

Anon@12.03, firstly the headline could have simply reported that a little child had been found dead. Reference to previous race-related assaults was unnecessary and inflamatory.

Of course some assaults have been race-related, I've pointed that out as you acknowledge. My point here was actually about the rush to state that all crimes involving a non-caucasian, and recently particularly Indian, are automatically race related when the investigations have hardly started.

The appalling Howard, and his policies, has been heavily criticised here by me in more than one posting.

The Cronulla riots were actually both ways, if you care to check it out, not simply caucasians attacking Lebanese. It began when a Lebanese group attacked beach lifeguards, caucasian mobs later attacked anyone looking like a Lebanese, Lebanese gangs then 'retaliated'...

The Aussie cricket team displays ungentlemany behaviour against all their opponents, not just the Indian team. You're jumping on the Indians-victimised bandwagon by suggesting otherwise. (And yes, I think sledging should be banned from the game and heavy penalties imposed).

Jumping in to state that every assault on a non caucasian is automatically a race crime is in itself racism. And it inflames racism.

Mohammed said...

I understand your disgust at the comments at Daily Mail.
However, look a bit closer to home, 7Days for instance presents the other side of the coin

You have people supporting the killing of this 3 year old saying "Indians stole over Aussie jobs so its understandable that the Aussies got pissed off".

So while we know this was not a aacist attack, there are people, Australian or otherwise who believe that killing 3 year old children is reasonable retaliation for Indians "stealing jobs"

Seabee said...

Mohammed I don't read 7Days so I haven't seen that - I guess it was in the letters column (many of which are 'spoof' letters designed only to create anger and get a reaction)

It all simply confirms that there are many, many people who don't deserve to live in civilised society.

Bush Mechanic said...

Keeping on the bad journalism track, have a look at the latest Australian take on Dubai presented by the ABC in Foreign Correspondent. I used to respect the program, but this is a rehash of the UK Guardian stories, several months late. Apparently we're all partying every night and drinking 2000 dollar bottles of champagne. Also Dubai is a Saudi Arabia with fancy window dressing. We've just passed the British tabloids in crap journalism.

intro quote.."They imagined a breathtaking future-world, burned billions of dollars to summon it out of the sand and hundreds of thousands of expats and investors stampeded into Dubai for a piece of the action. But when the sands suddenly shifted it wasn’t going to be quite so easy getting out."

Mohammed said...

I can assure you that whilst Canada, UK and USA may accept you living your life there like you would in some mud hut village in India, it is not appreciated in Australia. It is seen as a threat to our cultural norms and our identity as Australians. Tourist do not make the long trek to Australia to be greeted by thousands of people wearing saris and unable or unwilling to speak english. They come to meet a mostly white and proud people who have forged a new peaceful nation in just over 200 years.

Doesnt sound like spoof to me, rather a person who thinks the whiter Australia is, the better..

Anonymous said...

The stem of racism is nothing but a (threatened) person's reactive & repercussive inability to match another's capabilities - Old School

Seabee said...

BM: Apparently we're all partying every night and drinking 2000 dollar bottles of champagne

I'm not and I don't know anyone who is. How about you?

Mohammed, the bigot seems to think he's speaking for all Australians - and tourists. He's actually speaking for a small minority, thankfully.

Anonymous said...

Widespread racist e-mails in circulation in Oz police
Melbourne, Mar 25, (PTI):

Widespread racist e-mails have been found to be in circulation within the ranks of the Victorian police, already battling allegations of being slow to curb rising hate crimes against Indians.

Police launched an investigation after its ethical department found shocking racist content in circulation in internal police email system, a scandal that has already claimed the life of one officer. "Hundreds of personnel are being investigated," the Victorian chief commissioner Simon Overland told Australian news agency AAP.

While refusing to divulge the contents of the emails, Overland said, "Some were extremely offencive" and were found too shocking to be released publicly. According to AAP report, upto 100 officers are being probed for sending the emails on work computers that are being dubbed by officers allegedly extremely racist, homophobic and pornographic, officers have told media outlets.

"We're not talking about one item, we're talking about multiple items," Overland said. The police commissioner said those responsible for the racist emails would be fired as he confirmed that an officer Tony Vangorp, 47, had shot himself Monday night after tendering resignation.

Overland said the officer's job was on the line as he was being investigated. He also refused to confirm if the emails contained racist comments against Indian students or Africans - two minority groups who have criticised police conduct in recent months.

"I'm not going to describe exactly the nature of the material in question," Overland said adding "If the Victorian public were aware of the nature of that material, I believe that it's of such a nature that it would cause significant concern within the Victorian community." Overland said some of the emails are so serious that they raise "real questions about a number of individuals' suitability to continue with Victoria Police".

The police ethical standards department has been using computer experts to track the email. The state's top police watchdog, the Office of Police Integrity, confirmed last week that it had also launched an investigation into racism in the force.

Overland had earlier this week confessed that a small minority of officers were racist following release of a report that said police suffered from a culture of racism. The Age newspaper reported that the investigations centred on a graphic image of a non-Caucasian man being tortured, around which several policemen had added racist comments and forwarded these to other colleagues.

The scandal comes to light two weeks after an official report alleged that officers beat up African students and taunted them with terms like "monkey". Victorian police are already in the fire for their slow response to attack on Indian students.


Anonymous said...

Police in Australia investigated over 'racist' e-mail
BBC. 25MAR 2010.

Up to 100 police officers are being investigated in the Australian state of Victoria for sharing a racist e-mail.

The message reportedly shows a non-white man being tortured. Officers being investigated could face dismissal for circulating it on police computers.

The Victoria police force has been criticised for failing to respond adequately to a series of attacks against Indian students in Melbourne.

Earlier this month the police chief admitted some officers were racist.

Computer experts tracking the e-mail found that several had added racist comments before forwarding it on to colleagues, the Melbourne newspaper The Age reports.

It was one of a series of e-mails that were either racist or pornographic in nature, according to the Victoria Police chief Simon Overland.

"It's offensive and my view is that it would cause significant concern and alarm in the community if the nature of the material was made public," he said.

Earlier this month, Mr Overland was forced to concede there were racial bigots within the ranks of his force.

This followed a damning report that accused police officers of taunting and beating up an African youth