Certainly not, if you have an interest in community harmony and social inclusion in Australia as one of your priorities! They are openly racist and usually very Anti-Islam. This is far from a comprehensive list and I am sure there are a number of others that have disguised their blatant racism in terms of a more comprehensive and all encompassing policy platform. And it would appear that they would fit nicely in a Donald Trump environment.
Party 1: The Australian Liberty Alliance. It is rather ironic that this blatantly anti Islamic and anti Halal party has the acronym ALA (read “Allah”!). There are some incredibly racist policies in this party’s platform. The core policies are to “Stop the Islamisation of Australia” and for “Integration” and for “anti Halal” procedures. The fact that they had Geert Wilders launch the party late last year speaks volumes for this party. I am not about to name their candidates and will simply say that this is a party that lacks any finesse as a political organisation and I would be very surprised if they are able to garner much more than around 5-7% of the vote in any seat anywhere in Australia.
Party 2: Pauline Hanson’s One Nation party. Like a rancid smell, this racist and xenophobe continues to hang around. Notwithstanding this, one has to admire her tenacity. Her first attempt at political “Shangri-La” was in 1997 and despite a short time viewing life through the bars of a jail cell, she keeps coming back. She has well and truly out lived her welcome and may have a chance of a limited supporter base in Queensland but I don’t think any thinking Australian will give her a second consideration.
Party 3: Australia First. There are some people still deeply rooted in the politics of the 1980’s. Jim Saleam is one such troglodyte. From running around with the likes of Jack Van Tongeren, Saleam continues to defy expectations but importantly also defies any sense of logic. He returns on a regular basis despite being told in no uncertain terms that he is not welcome in anyone’s backyard. In his most recent outing Dr Saleam stood against Scott Morrison and walked away with the total of 617 votes out of a total electorate of over 92,000 people. Hardly an endorsement, I would have thought.
Party 4: Rise Up Australia. This is a party that I have the most concern about. They are run by a person I regard with the maximum derision. His name is Pastor Danny Nalliah. When I stood for the Wikileaks Party in 2013, the candidate of the RUA was at the election office to do the registration at the same time as Gerry Georgatos and I were registering our own candidacies. After she introduced herself to us, Gerry watched with some amusement as my natural instincts kicked and I started losing it completely and refused to be on the same side of the room as the racists and had no hesitation in telling her this. Soon thereafter Gerry received a phone call from Pastor Nalliah asking who I was and suggesting that we have a debate about Multiculturalism in a public venue. I was delighted to accept and conveyed that message to Nalliah. That unfortunately, is the last we heard of that matter!
The reason for my concern about this party is that there is already a captive market of believers that subscribe to Nalliah’s racist and intolerant views. It will not take much to translate that into active votes for their candidates. A further issue that I have a concern about in this regard is that the candidates they have chosen are usually people of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. This, in the eyes of ordinary Australians, gives them some form of additional credibility in discussing racism issues. Let me assure you that it does not. All it does is prove that any group of people can be racist in their views and actions. It also demonstrates an axiom that I have held dear which is “having racism perpetrated against you does not make you a “good” person”!
There are a couple of other racist and Anti Muslim parties around. Fred Nile has his particular brand of racism manifested in a party structure. Kim Vuga has her Independent candidacy for a Senate seat in Queensland and so on.
Generally the percentage of people in Australia who hold blatantly and deeply rooted views about issues of racism is believed and estimated to be around 10%. As Professor Kevin Dunn has found in the studies that he and his colleagues have conducted…” About one-in-ten Australians have very problematic views on diversity and on ethnic difference. They believe that some races are naturally inferior or superior, and they believe in the need to keep groups separated. These separatists and supremacists are a destructive minority.”
That interestingly, is also the percentage of people who vote for parties such as One Nation and others. I am guessing that in the present climate that that percentage is going to remain around this level. However, if there is another act of terror between now and the date of the election, somewhere in the World that people like Trump will exploit to push their particular racist diatribes, this percentage may rise slightly to somewhere around 12%.
I hope that I am right and we do not see the level of support that has been accorded to these groups in other parts of the World. And we can all do our part by starting our voting process at the ballot box the same way I do. That involves starting with the last few numbers being allocated to all of these parties and then working my way back to the number 1 position.