Thursday, 3 March 2016


PART 1: Preamble
PART 2: Analysis
PART 3: Summary

          MC is the great sacred cow of our times in Australia and in much of the West and any prominent person who slanders the notion that cultural diversity is the holy grail of a society's benificence is quickly marched to the figurative stocks of PC to be pilloried by the righteous liberal left-progressives with epithets of  "racist, white-supremacist, bigot, fascist," etc. Yet, Merkel and Sarkozy,doyens of the Euro-socialists, declared that MC was dead - and that was before the great invasion - but Europe is too distant for we antipodeans to care, except that is, for the cultural relativists like Prof. Andrew Jakubowicz of Uni Tech, Sydney who, along with alumni and many other of his ilk, were insisting that government grant legislative legitimacy to MC.
          Here's the problem: What the heck is Multiculturalism? In fact, a priori, what constitutes culture itself. Here is the challenge: define Culture! For starters, "culture and race have nothing to do with each other." {Roger Scruton, The American Spectator, Jan 2011}. Second fly in the ointment: "Not all cultures are equally admirable." { ex PM Abbott }. Toss any number of flies into the ointment e.g. "All men are equal" and so on, and we have the makings of a good old ideological stoush, and one that will never be decided by knockout because 'culture', undefined, is a term thrown about by all and sundry without any consensus as to its meaning.
          Enough already with the waffle! Allow me to get down to the tintacks with my own opening salvo, aimed at defining culture and, as I go down in a hail of academian bullets, let's hope such bullets begin to hit the target of defining this wretched term 'culture'. Moreover, finding its meaning for Australia.


          I believe that there are so many elements which constitute culture that a few must be singled out as pre-requisite, undeniable, and must take precedence over others; for example, I would classify 'tradition' as more integral than national cuisine.
          And, there is one, single element which is the foundation of, not only Australian culture, but all countrys' cultures. That element is LAW, encompassing both Common Law and Statutory Law as well as the CONSTITUTION.  Just these elements rule out Sharia Law as we do not accept the elements, for example, of child marriage, polygamy, FMG, jizra tax, gender subjugation and so on. {Halal certification is technically illegal since it is not voluntary, not opt-out, and is hidden}.
          Second, JURISPRUDENCE is law in action but applies in various levels, is often subjective according to various criteria and contains its own customs and controls. {Sharia Courts are integral to the practice of Islam but are illegal unless legislated by the Australian Parliament }.
          Third is our system of POLITIQUE. Our own is Democratic as opposed to other systems, e.g. Totalitarian, Oligarchic, Dictatorial, Monarchial etc. Australia's system is classified as equal first for political freedom [Wikipedia].
          Fourth are the various political tenets and systems under the principle of the separation of Church and State where no one religion is favoured or granted legislative advantage.
          Next are those elements, both philosophical and legal, gleaned from Law and Politic, which become most valued by society, having too devolved over the country's history. Such elements as: Sovereignty, Equality, Religious Freedom, Freedom of Speech, Free Enterprise, Non-Unjust-Discrimination, Private Ownership, Free Market Economic System.
          Then, I suggest, come those elements which are not necessarily determined by legislature but are developed over time and have come to pervade our collective value system: Values, Ethos, Ethics, Morality, Traditions, Language, Education, Conventions.
          I won't be so brash as to elucidate on these elements, but some thoughts on one aspect are given to exemplify the multiplicity of features in each - as the example, let's consider 'Ethos'. Under just this single element, I suggest that aspects of Ethos are as follows. Willingness to defend one's country; friendship towards other particular nations [e.g. New Zealand, U.S. and U.K.]; a willingness to do voluntary and charitable works; mateship; a 'fair go'; assist the less fortunate; openness; outspokenness; national pride; unique sacred cows [e.g. Anzac traditions]; mild irreverence; egalitarianism; affinity to the 'bush'; apathy [she'll be right] and so on.
          Next may I suggest: the Arts [all forms]; the vernacular [axioms, idioms, accent]; sporting sub-culture; history; habits; stories and legends; knowledge.
          Last, and perhaps least but nevertheless integral to culture is: LIFESTYLE. This includes Dress, cuisine, affinity to outdoor life, travel customs, habitat.
          That's almost it.
          Note that I have not included religious belief. This may seem a contradictory omission but, while our culture is clearly based on Judeo-Christian principles, Christian religious practice is declining and, anyway, an element of our culture is the acceptance of multi-faiths. Although, where adherents to a particular faith become overtly non-inclusive, we tend to get our backs up - our line in the sand is generous, but it's there.
          Note too, 'Race' is not mentioned in my definition, simply because we largely accept that we are a multi-racial [except for the few].
          So, are we, or should we be a multicultural society? The short answer is a resounding "NO", because this country has but one Law, one Constitution, one Politic, one Justice System, and no favoured religion or race. {The issue of 'race' is contentious since our immigration policy favours Anglo, Caucasian, European, but this will be taken up on another occasion ]. That said, we do have legislation specific to Aborigines, which is why it is my personal contention that Australia is a bi-cultural society. This too is for another day.
          Australia is, in my view, multi-racial, diverse and inclusive: it is not multicultural - which is a term misused off-handedly by most and intentionally by certain idealogues for political purposes.


                                                              Law. Constitution. Politic. Jurisprudence.
                                                              Fashioned by:
                                                               Values. Ethos. Ethics. Morality. Tradition.
                                                              With Standardized:
                                                               Language. Conventions. Economic System. History.
                                                               Reflected in:
                                                               Arts. Vernacular. Habits. Stories. Sport. Knowledge.
                                                               Diverse in:
                                                               Lifestyle. Ethnicity. Religion.

Implication for ISLAM: If these conditions are reasonably accurate, there is no room for Sharia Law.
                                        Muslims, as indeed migrants from any culture other than Australian, are
                                        acceptable only on the condition that they are prepared to assimilate in
                                        accordance with these cultural norms. Integration too is only acceptable
                                        where migrants' customs do not clash with the norm to the point of causing
                                        friction or interfere or disrupt those following the established cultural

John Namnik  [ }

Further reading:


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