Despite hopping from one kind of racism to the next as each stopped being fashionable over the last 20 years, Pauline Hanson has always found some terrible excuse to justify whatever brand of racism it is she’s currently touting.
Now that her whole thing is Muslims, she’s using attacks by extremists say that most Australians are scared and want our borders closed to them. Unfortunately, as the election showed, she speaks for some people, but she sure as fuck doesn’t speak for everyone.
Alpha Cheng knows the effects of extremism all too personally – his father, Curtis, was killed in 2015 by 15-year-old Farhad Jabar, who attacked the NSW Police headquarters with a gun. His motivations remain unclear, but it is suspected they were tied to Islamic extremism.
Despite this, Cheng objects to people like Pauline Hanson using his father’s death as an excuse to whip up anti-Islamic sentiment, especially when he himself was subjected to similar rhetoric as a child, also by Pauline Hanson.
Cheng had a chat to ‘The Project‘s Waleed Aly about facing discrimination, and trying to make sure other people don’t experience it:
“As someone who, at 8 or 9, had recently come to the country, it really adds an air that you don’t feel very welcome. I remember very clearly people asking me at school ‘Do you know you may be kicked out of the country soon?’
“I don’t want people in the Muslim community, especially young people, to feel like they are not welcome here. That they are less Australian just because of their faith, their birth.”
He says he owes it to his dad to make sure everyone is welcome in Australia:
“He came to Australia, he brought our family over in the hopes of building a better life, of being included in society and contributing to society.
“So I feel like my message is to continue that belief that we can all contribute and build Australia as a positive, inclusive, diverse society.”
What a bloody legend. You can watch the whole interview right here.
Source and photo: Ten.
Photo: Getty Images.