Between now and Australia Day (26th) I will devote this blog mainly to Australian issues. I do this because Australia Day does tend to attract some pretty outrageous things these days. I have already seen one in the form of an anonymous email, probably neo-Nazi in origin, but more of that on another post.
Last night during Waleed Aly’s new show I saw this for the first time. I think it outstanding.
Now about Waleed Aly’s new show.
I thoroughly enjoyed it. Jack Thompson’s reading of one of his father John Thompson’s poems was a knockout.
So what is going on in this show? Without being at all preachy it is sending at least two messages, one to Muslims and one to all of us. To Muslims, that is thinking, literate young Muslims, it is saying “you CAN be totally part of the Australian mainstream AND a Muslim.” That is a very necessary counter to the simplistic and lethal message conveyed by the nihilists of the Muslim world, so well summed up in Moir’s cartoon today.
To the rest of us it is an invitation to realise that cartoon is not all that can be said about Islam. To me, a theme I will constantly repeat over the coming weeks, Australians are all those who currently have citizenship — no exceptions. We have to reach out and co-operate with one another if we want this to be a good country. That is precisely what Waleed Aly is doing.
Unfortunately Muslim and non-Muslim bogans alike won’t be watching this show. There are other kinds of voices in that area however; I think of people like Hazem El Mazry who has been a great role model. I am pleased to see, however, that Waleed’s show did get publicity on the Muslim Village site.
Finally, here is Waleed Aly on a controversial topic.