Tuesday, April 6, 2010

An Open Letter to President Barack Obama in response to your Proclamation Against Sexual Assault in the U.S.

[image of U.S. President Barack Obama is from here]

Dear President Obama,

I am concerned that actions that can lead to a decrease in sexual assault, particularly against populations most vulnerable in our free society, are not being accomplished, and are not even being advocated by the Leader of this land.

As you well note, Native American women are at particular risk for rape, at double the rate of the rape of women across race in the U.S. And as you may know, over 80% of the rapists of Native women are white men. Will you support amnesty for any Native American person living on reservation land, within the boundaries of their own Nation, to use their authority and agency as citizens of their Nations to shoot to kill any white man who trespasses as an illegal alien, as a terrorist, onto Indian land without prior permission and expressed reason to cross onto the land of a community with a specific destination that is not "in order to rape a Native American woman"?

Are you willing to state that rape functions normally and systematically as a form of male supremacist terrorism against female human beings, that rapists are terrorists, so that we can begin to note that inside and outside of police forces, inside and outside of the military, and inside and outside of women's homes and various workplaces and institutions of learning and prayer, white men are the demographic that ought to be stigmatised as terrorists, if any group ought to be. Can you instruct the media to make this clear, so that white U.S. folks more clearly understand that Arab-American Muslim men or women living in the U.S. are no longer mistakenly designated as terrorists against other U.S. citizens? Can you similarly instruct the media to report that the gender, race, and religious identity of "the terrorist on U.S. soil" is usually a white Christian-identified heterosexual husband or boyfriend of a woman, or the father figure of a girl; it is that demographic which statistically and in practice, threatens the lives, the human rights and health, of the women and girls white heterosexual men systematically sexually abuse?

Another particularly vulnerable population to rape and other sexual assault are women and girls who are being pimped, trafficked, and sold into sexual slavery. Are you willing to take leadership to criminalise the acts of U.S. citizens procuring women anywhere in the world for the purposes of obtaining sexual acts in exchange for money? Will you also decriminalise the acts of pimped, trafficked, and enslaved women seeking money from procurers, so that when they are raped they are not deterred from reporting the rape to the police out of fear of being arrested, harassed, and further assaulted?

Another at risk population is what this country terms "immigrants" and "migrants", among other more pejorative terms, like "illegal aliens". Are you willing to make it law that any person currently existing, working, residing, or living within the boundaries of U.S. territories who is raped or otherwise sexually assaulted by a U.S. citizen, is free to report the rape and obtain medical attention and other survival services as needed, and not be charged with trespass or sent back to their country of origin? And that the rapists' and assaulters' rights to reside within the U.S. as a free citizen are revoked?

With regard to children, are you willing to have a one strike policy for child molesters and adult incest perpetrators, so that they may not be allowed to continue to reside in free society; that they will, necessarily, suffer the consequence of loss of freedom should they sexually assault a child? Are you willing to publicly note that it is men within the family who are the most likely people to commit sexual assault, and that it is women and girls within families that nurture and care for predators who are the majority of victims of sexual assault? Are you willing to make it law that no father or grandfather who has committed any act of child molestation or child sexual assault be allowed visitation of any of his biological children or grandchildren, adopted children, step-children, or any other children in his family or the families of those with whom he associates?

With regard to Catholic priests and other ordained clergy: are you willing to devote resources for making sure that those clergy who abuse children are put away behind federal prison bars, not merely transported to another district or church congregation to reoffend? Are you willing to make a public statement of outrage to Pope Benedict and all the cardinals, bishops, and other leaders within the Catholic Church's organisational structure, declaring the criminals who are aiding and abetting terrorists within a terroristic institution that specifically and with structurally approved provisions and policies, regularly places known male sex offenders in proximity of children and women? Are you supportive of preventing known sex offenders from congregating and worshiping with their victims? Will you offer leadership in declaring as moral, good, and right, doing whatever is lawfully necessary to stop religiously-protected perpetrators from serially committing sex crimes against humanity?

What steps are you planning to take to ensure that the sexual harassment and assault of girls by boys, inside and around public school systems, is made an actionable offense resulting in expulsion, so that those victimised are safe to go to school the days following being harassed and assaulted without being further abused, humiliated, and degraded?

Will you publicly promote and advocate for women and children to defend themselves against family members who are serial sexual predators and sexual assault perpetrators, such that it becomes fully legal and not criminal for the victims to employ strategies against their perpetrators, to any degree that is appropriate and necessary to make survivable the process of safely escaping conditions of systematic sexual or gendered terrorism within the family home, including the use of premeditated lethal force by those victims?

Afghan and Iraqi citizens--women, as a matter of common practice if not overt policy, are raped as well as terrorised through other militaristic means by U.S. troops--men. Are you willing to be personally, ethically, and legally responsible for men's rapes and deaths of women and girls? What is your justification for allowing this militarised political predation to continue? If for no other reason that to stop U.S. male soldiers from raping Afghan and Iraqi women and girls, will you please remove our troops from our wars against the Iraqi and Afghan people, as you were instructed to do by those citizens who elected you into the office you now hold?

Finally, will you identify the crimes of rape, sexual assault, and sexual harassment as male supremacist hate crimes against women, given that these crimes, as you note, are overwhelmingly committed by men against women, and by adolescent and teen boys against girls? Do you support these crimes being legally framed, understood, treated, and prosecuted as such under federal law?

Toward a more just, safe, and humane world in which children and women can live with men in peace, not war.

I look forward to your reply.

Julian Real, a residing citizen of the U.S.A.

*          *          *

For those who have not yet read it, this is President Obama's official statement:


Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release April 1, 2010
- - - - - - -

Every day, women, men, and children across America suffer the pain and trauma of sexual assault. From verbal harassment and intimidation to molestation and rape, this crime occurs far too frequently, goes unreported far too often, and leaves long-lasting physical and emotional scars. During National Sexual Assault Awareness Month, we recommit ourselves not only to lifting the veil of secrecy and shame surrounding sexual violence, but also to raising awareness, expanding support for victims, and strengthening our response.

Sexual violence is an affront to our national conscience, one which we cannot ignore. It disproportionately affects women -- an estimated one in six American women will experience an attempted or completed rape at some point in her life. Too many men and boys are also affected.

These facts are deeply troubling, and yet, sexual violence affects Americans of all ages, backgrounds, and circumstances. Alarming rates of sexual violence occur among young women attending college, and frequently, alcohol or drugs are used to incapacitate the victim. Among people with disabilities, isolation may lead to repeated assaults and an inability to seek and locate help. Native American women are more than twice as likely to be sexually assaulted compared with the general population. As a Nation, we share the responsibility for protecting each other from sexual assault, supporting victims when it does occur, and bringing perpetrators to justice.

We can lead this charge by confronting and changing insensitive attitudes wherever they persist. Survivors too often suffer in silence because they fear further injury, are unwilling to experience further humiliation, or lack faith in the criminal justice system. This feeling of isolation, often compounded with suicidal feelings, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder, only exacerbate victims' sense of hopelessness. No one should face this trauma alone, and as families, friends, and mentors, we can empower victims to seek the assistance they need.

At the Federal, State, local, and tribal level, we must work to provide necessary resources to victims of every circumstance, including medical attention, mental health more services, relocation and housing assistance, and advocacy during legal proceedings. Under Vice President Biden's leadership, the 2005 reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act included the Sexual Assault Services Program, the first-ever funding stream dedicated solely to providing direct services to victims of sexual assault. To further combat sexual violence, my 2011 Budget doubles funding for this program. Through the Justice Department and the Centers for Disease Control, we are funding prevention and awareness campaigns as well as grants for campus services to address sexual assault on college campuses. The Justice Department has also increased funding and resources to combat violence against Native American women.

As we continue to confront this crime, let us reaffirm this month our dedication to take action in our communities and stop abuse before it starts. Together, we can increase awareness about sexual violence, decrease its frequency, punish offenders, help victims, and heal lives.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 2010 as National Sexual Assault Awareness Month. I urge all Americans to reach out to victims, learn more about this crime, and speak out against it.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this first day of April, in the year of our Lord two thousand ten, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.

Apartheid Australia's Genocide Against Aboriginal People: Current Findings

[image is from here]
What these figures mean in cold hard reality is that 9,000 Indigenous Australians die avoidably each year out of a total Indigenous population of about 0.5 million – and this is happening in one of the richest countries in the world. For further details of this continuing outrage see “Aboriginal Genocide”: http://sites.google.com/site/aboriginalgenocide/home .

Of course politically correct racist (PC racist) Australians endlessly declare their love for Indigenous Australians while permitting this atrocity to continue. Spare a thought therefore for Australian Subjects who are not actually Australians. Thus the “annual death rate” is 7% for under-5 year old infants in Australian-occupied Afghanistan - as compared to 4% for Poles in Nazi-occupied Poland, 7% for French Jews in Nazi-occupied France and 13% for Australian prisoners of war (POWs) of the Japanese in World War 2 (see “Polish Holocaust (1939-1945) & Afghan Holocaust (2001- )”:

In addition to the continuing Aboriginal Genocide (about 2 million avoidable deaths over 222 years), Australia has been involved in a further 20 genocidal atrocities (see “Australia’s Secret Genocide History. La Trobe, “Bundoora Eucalyptus” & Black Crimes of White Australia”: http://sites.google.com/site/aboriginalgenocide/australia-s-secret-genocide-history ). Australia is involved in 7 continuing, genocide atrocities namely the ongoing Aboriginal Genocide (9,000 avoidable deaths annually), Palestinian Genocide ( post-invasion excess deaths 0.3 million), the Iraqi Genocide (1990-2010 excess deaths 4.4 million), the Afghan Genocide (post-invasion excess deaths 4.5 million), the Muslim Genocide (1990-2005 excess deaths 0.6 billion), worsening Biofuel Genocide (billions threatened by the First World food for fuel perversion) and Climate Genocide (22 million people die avoidably each year from increasingly climate-impacted poverty; 10 billion non-Europeans are predicted to die this century from unaddressed, man-made climate change with Australia the world’s worst annual per capita greenhouse gas polluter).

What follows is from *here*.
Ongoing Aboriginal Genocide In Apartheid Australia
By Dr Gideon Polya
03 April, 2010

According to Article 2 of the UN Geneva Convention: “In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such: a) Killing members of the group; b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group” (see UN Geneva Convention (see: http://www.edwebproject.org/sideshow/genocide/convention.html ).

A key term in the UN Genocide Convention definition of “genocide” is “intent” which can be ascertained either by (a) confession (most unlikely even if the genocidists are arraigned before the International Criminal Court) or (b) evidence of sustained action or inaction leading to excess deaths (avoidable deaths). Australia is clearly guilty of sustained, remorseless “intent”, in relation to Indigenous (Aboriginal) Australia, to “bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part” by sustained inaction. It is estimated that 9,000 Indigenous Australians die every year out of a total Indigenous population of about 0.5 million (see “Aboriginal Genocide”: http://sites.google.com/site/aboriginalgenocide/home ). 

Australia must be described as Apartheid Australia because it has race-based laws that specifically exclude Northern Territory Indigenous Australians from the protection of the 1975 Racial Discrimination Act (RDA), legislation passed by the anti-racist reformist Australian Labor Government of Gough Whitlam back in 1975 before it was overthrown by a CIA-backed coup (see “1975 Racial Discrimination Act”: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Racial_Discrimination_Act_1975 ; for a summary of the 1975 CIA-backed coup in Australia see William Blum’s best selling book “Rogue State”).
This racist legislation excluding NT Aboriginals from the protection of the 1975 Racial Discrimination Act (RDA) was endorsed by both the then Liberal-National Party Coalition Government and the then Labor Opposition (collectively known as the Lib-Labs) in legislation known as the Northern Territory National Emergency Response Bill 2007 ("NTNER Bill"). Clause 132 of the NTNER Bill states that the provisions of it are classified as 'special measures' under the 1975 Racial Discrimination Act and therefore exempt from Part II of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (RDA) (see “Northern Territory National Emergency Response Bill 2007”: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northern_Territory_

The Australian Human Rights and Equal Rights Commission (HREOC) strongly opposed this racist legislation in the following terms: “HREOC welcomes the recognition by the government of the serious, broad ranging social and economic disadvantage in many Indigenous communities... However, HREOC stresses that the legislation and action taken under it must seek to achieve its goals consistently with the fundamental right to racial equality. HREOC does not support the NTNER measures being exempt from the RDA. These laws clearly have a number of significant actual and potential negative impacts upon the rights of Indigenous people which are discriminatory. The laws generally must therefore be justifiable as a ‘special measure’ taken for the advancement of Indigenous people to be consistent with human rights principles. If the NTNER measures are not ‘special measures’, they should not be enacted. HREOC submits that a fundamental feature of ‘special measures’ is that they are done following effective consultation with the intended beneficiaries and generally with their consent… HREOC submits that a fundamental feature of ‘special measures’ is that they are done following effective consultation with the intended beneficiaries and generally with their consent. The absence of effective consultation with Indigenous people concerning the NTNER measures is therefore a matter of serious concern. HREOC accepts the need for urgent action. However, the success of that action both immediately and in the long term will depend upon effective consultation. And such consultation is fundamental to respecting the human rights of Indigenous people. More broadly, HREOC is concerned that the NTNER measures are likely to produce unintended negative consequences that adversely impact upon the rights of Indigenous people” (see “Submission of the Human Rights and Equal Rights Commission (HREOC) to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Committee on the Northern Territory National Emergency Response Legislation”, 10 August 2007, Australian Human Rights:

The Australian Labor Party (ALP) now merits the description as the “Apartheid Labor Party” and “Another Liberal Party”. The Apartheid Labor Federal Government of Apartheid Australia has gone further in its attacks on Aborigjnal Human Rights. Thus it is denying proper medical, housing and security services to Aborigines in remote communities and thus forcing them off their Sacred Land. It already seizes or withholds the social service welfare payments of Indigenous Australians in remote communities and is now proposing to extend this to all people in the Northern Territory and thence to all Australia as a punishment for school child truancy (and thereby overwhelmingly discriminating against Indigenous Australians in both cases)
(see: http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/

However the real crime of the Apartheid Labor Government is simply not reported by the Mainstream media and neocon politicians of Apartheid Australia – the real crime is the appalling avoidable death rate of Indigenous Australians due to an estimated 2-3-fold under-funding of Aboriginal health services. Australians are aware of the nearly 20 year difference between the life expectancy of White Australians and Indigenous Australians but the actual numbers of avoidable deaths (excess deaths) involved are simply not reported. Thus a search of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) (see: http://search.abc.net.au/search/search.cgi?query=%
) .for the terms “excess death” or “avoidable death” yields zero (0) results relating to Aborigines and searches for “avoidable mortality” and “excess mortality” yield 2 and 1 such results, respectively. 

This is what the ABC, the Mainstream media and neocon politicians of Apartheid Australia choose not to tell their fellow Australians: the “annual death rate” is 2.2% (for Indigenous Australians) and 2.4% (for Indigenous Australians in the Northern Territory) as compared to 0.4% (what it should be) and about 2.5% (for sheep in Australian paddocks) (for details and documentation see Thomson, N., Burns, J., Burrow, S & Kirov, E. (2004), Overview of indigenous health 2004. Australian Indigenous Health Bulletin; 4(4): Reviews; Gideon Polya, “The Awful Truth”, National Indigenous Times, 14 June 2007: http://www.nit.com.au/news/story.aspx?id=11555 ; and Gideon Polya Aboriginal genocide. Racist White Australian Child Abuse & Passive Mass Murder”: http://sites.google.com/site/aboriginalgenocide/aboriginal-genocide ). 

The above data indicate an “annual avoidable death rate” of 1.8% for Indigenous Australians and 2.0% for Northern Territory Indigenous Australians – as compared to 0.0% (White Australians, North Americans), 0.01% (East Asians), 0.03% (Latin Americans), 0.05% (West Europeans), 0.25% (Arab North Africa and Middle East), 0.26% (South East Asia), 0.3% (Eastern Europe), 0.26% (Turkey, Iran and Central Asia), 0.38% (South Asia), 0.39% (Pacific) and 0.97% (non-Arab Africa). 

Indeed the “annual avoidable death rate” of 1.8% for Indigenous Australians and 2.0% for Northern Territory Indigenous Australians must be compared with the very worst national figures from around the World e.g. 0.5% (North Korea), 1.1% (Haiti), 1.8% (Afghanistan), 2.3% (Zimbabwe), 2.4% (Zambia) and 2.6% (Sierra Leone) (2003 data from Gideon Polya, “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950”: http://globalavoidablemortality.blogspot.com/ ). 

What these figures mean in cold hard reality is that 9,000 Indigenous Australians die avoidably each year out of a total Indigenous population of about 0.5 million – and this is happening in one of the richest countries in the world. For further details of this continuing outrage see “Aboriginal Genocide”: http://sites.google.com/site/aboriginalgenocide/home .

Of course politically correct racist (PC racist) Australians endlessly declare their love for Indigenous Australians while permitting this atrocity to continue. Spare a thought therefore for Australian Subjects who are not actually Australians. Thus the “annual death rate” is 7% for under-5 year old infants in Australian-occupied Afghanistan - as compared to 4% for Poles in Nazi-occupied Poland, 7% for French Jews in Nazi-occupied France and 13% for Australian prisoners of war (POWs) of the Japanese in World War 2 (see “Polish Holocaust (1939-1945) & Afghan Holocaust (2001- )”:

In addition to the continuing Aboriginal Genocide (about 2 million avoidable deaths over 222 years), Australia has been involved in a further 20 genocidal atrocities (see “Australia’s Secret Genocide History. La Trobe, “Bundoora Eucalyptus” & Black Crimes of White Australia”: http://sites.google.com/site/aboriginalgenocide/australia-s-secret-genocide-history ). Australia is involved in 7 continuing, genocide atrocities namely the ongoing Aboriginal Genocide (9,000 avoidable deaths annually), Palestinian Genocide ( post-invasion excess deaths 0.3 million), the Iraqi Genocide (1990-2010 excess deaths 4.4 million), the Afghan Genocide (post-invasion excess deaths 4.5 million), the Muslim Genocide (1990-2005 excess deaths 0.6 billion), worsening Biofuel Genocide (billions threatened by the First World food for fuel perversion) and Climate Genocide (22 million people die avoidably each year from increasingly climate-impacted poverty; 10 billion non-Europeans are predicted to die this century from unaddressed, man-made climate change with Australia the world’s worst annual per capita greenhouse gas polluter).

What can decent people do? Decent people must (a) tell everyone they can (silence kills and silence is complicity) and (b) apply Sanctions and Boycotts against Apartheid Australia just as Sanctions and Boycotts were successfully applied to Apartheid Australia-, US-, UK- and Apartheid Israel-supported Apartheid South Africa.

Dr Gideon Polya currently teaches science students at a major Australian university. He published some 130 works in a 5 decade scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text "Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds" (CRC Press/Taylor & Francis, New York & London , 2003). He has recently published “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950” (G.M. Polya, Melbourne, 2007: http://globalbodycount.blogspot.com/ ); see also his contribution “Australian complicity in Iraq mass mortality” in “Lies, Deep Fries & Statistics” (edited by Robyn Williams, ABC Books, Sydney, 2007): http://www.abc.net.au/rn/science/ockham/stories/s1445960.htm ). He has just published a revised and updated 2008 version of his 1998 book “Jane Austen and the Black Hole of British History” (see: http://janeaustenand.blogspot.com/ ) as biofuel-, globalization- and climate-driven global food price increases threaten a greater famine catastrophe than the man-made famine in British-ruled India that killed 6-7 million Indians in the “forgotten” World War 2 Bengal Famine (see recent BBC broadcast involving Dr Polya, Economics Nobel Laureate Professor Amartya Sen and others: http://www.open2.net/thingsweforgot/ bengalfamine_programme.html ). When words fail one can say it in pictures - for images of Gideon Polya's huge paintings for the Planet, Peace, Mother and Child see: http://sites.google.com/site/artforpeaceplanetmotherchild/ and http://www.flickr.com/photos/gideonpolya/ .

The Rapist Consequences of Racism in Australia

 [image is from here]

What follows is a cross post from *here* at CounterCurrents.org.
Australia: Look Different And Risk Being Assaulted
By Ghali Hassan
01 April, 2010

The ongoing, racially-motivated attacks on international students and people from non-Anglo-Saxon backgrounds, and concerted efforts by the Australian Government and the media to downplay racism, prove that Australians are unable and unwilling to live as a civilised society without racism. In white Anglo-Saxon Australia, it remains as deeply-entrenched as ever.

On February 6, 2010, at an international students' safety forum organised by the Victorian Immigrant and Refugee Women's Coalition in Melbourne, the Victoria Police Chief Commissioner Mr Simon Overland said: ”Don't display your iPods, don't display your valuable watch, and don’t display your valuable jewelry. Try to look as poor as you can or risk being assaulted.” (The Age, February 7, 2010). Mr Overland was referring to a spate of racially-motivated attacks against Indians in Melbourne. In reality, Mr Overland was saying: ‘If you look different (i.e., not white Anglo-Saxon), you risk being assaulted and it is your fault.’ Mr Overland was denying the existence of deeply-entrenched racism in Australia and blaming the victims of racially-motivated crimes.

The Australian government and media are refusing to acknowledge racially-motivated violence and continue to play down its horrendous effects on people from non-Anglo-Saxon backgrounds. The Government is concerned that racially-motivated violence on international students will damage Australia’s manufactured image and undermine Australia’s multimillion-dollar “education industry”, which is destroying Australia’s education system (For more, see my: “Australia’s Predatory Education”).

To be clear about Australia’s chronic racism, Indian students are not the only victims of racially-motivated violence in Australia. Violence against Indian students is reflected in racially-motivated crimes against anyone who looks different, whether Indigenous Australians, Muslim Australians, or people from ethnic minorities, including refugees. However, the majority of racially-motivated crimes are covered-up and excluded because they are considered politically unpalatable. Racially-motivated crimes against Indian students took centre stage, because of wide coverage by the vocal Indian media and the Indian community in Australia.

The primary victims of racially-motivated violence and discrimination in Australia are Australians of non-English speaking backgrounds, Muslims Australians, Indigenous Australians and refugees, including Africans.

On September 26, 2007, Liep Gony, a 19-year old Sudanese-Australian was murdered in Melbourne in an unprovoked and cowardly attack by two white Australians who were motivated by hatred of “blacks”. Kevin Andrews, the bigoted former Immigration minister in the Howard’s government, linked the murder of a young man who spent half of his life in Australia, to lack of “integration” on the part of the Sudanese refugees in Australia who continue to suffer discrimination.

In February 2010, an Australian student from non-English speaking background at a regional university in Southern Queensland was seriously assaulted by a white Anglo-Australian landlord. After the police arrived on the scene, the police immediately took sides to protect the white landlord. The student was removed from the property which he was renting and made homeless by the police despite the fact that the landlord was holding the student’s bond and rent money. The student was taken to the hospital and spent the night there. The landlord remains free and continues his illegal business preying on unprotected people.

When the student called the Residential Tenancy Authority, he was informed that the police acted unlawfully and that he should insist on laying charges against the landlord and demand compensation for damage. “Queensland is like the rest of Australia, extremely racist and extremely violent state”, wrote the student in an email. There is no doubt, if the crime had been committed by a non-Anglo Australian, the offender would have been arrested and charged.

The perception that the police were doing everything they could to stop assaults on non-Anglo-Saxon Australians and foreign students doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. Police inaction and Policing are part of the problem of racism in Australia.

On February 14, 2007, Ahmed Dini, an 18-year old youth of Somali origin was assaulted by a police officer at Flemington police station in Melbourne. The assault was so violent, the young man required dental surgery. Recently, an out-of-court settlement awarded the Somali man more than $70,000 in compensation for his ordeal. In another civil case, eight police officers based at Moonee Ponds police station are facing assault and false imprisonment charges after it was alleged that a 19-year-old African youth was assaulted by police and lost part of his sight in one eye. (The Age, March 17, 2010).

A new report by the Springvale Monash Legal Service (SMLS) revealed that police in Melbourne were assaulting and racially abusing young Africans, particularly [1]. Although the report covered only three regions in Melbourne (Braybrook, Flemington and Greater Dandenong), it is a good representative sample of Australia as a whole. In addition, the Australian Broadcasting Corp (ABC) revealed recently that a large number of Victoria Police, including senior officers, are involved in serious racial discrimination after a racist email was circulated state widely on the police email system. While not all police are racist and there are many honest and professional police, the vast majority of police in Australia are white Anglo-Saxon and like the rest of Anglo-Saxon Australia, racism is deeply entrenched in the police force.

A study by the Institute for Community, Ethnicity and Policy Alternatives (ICEPA) of Victoria University in Melbourne found that; “More than half (57%) of international students (not just Indian students) surveyed said they found Australia less safe than they have expected.” A majority (more than three-quarters) of international students reported “threats to their safety”, ranging from verbal abuse to violence that they believed was motivated by “a racial, religious or cultural element”, and even felt that “police at time displayed ethnic and racial bias” towards them, according to the ICEPA study.

Despite the disproportionately low rate of “ethnic” crimes, police across Australia are known to target certain groups. Australians from non-Anglo-Saxon background were more than three times likely to experience discrimination in policing than those white Australians born in Australia.

According to data gathered by the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission – a government funded department – Indigenous Australians are 15 times more likely to be imprisoned and 26 times more likely to be held in police custody than Anglo-Saxon Australians. Indigenous children are 18.6 times more likely to be held in detention.

In Western Australia – the nation’s redneck state – the rate is 32.4 times higher than for Indigenous children. In Queensland – the nation’s most corrupt state – more than half (55.7%) of young Australians in detention were Indigenous. In 2007, 432 of Australia's 742 juvenile prisoners were Indigenous.

Twenty years after the Royal Commission in Aboriginal Death in Custody, Indigenous Australians continue disproportionately to risk arrest, detention, assault and death in custody. In Queensland alone, there have been four deaths in custody in just over a month this year, one on February 20 and three in March 2010.

Discrimination against Muslims Australians (1.8 of Australia’s population) is on the rise. Muslim women have been an obvious target of racially-motivated attacks by racist Anglo Australians because their traditional dress makes them visible. On November 5, 2005, “[a Muslim woman] was punched, kicked, spat on and abused, told to ‘go home to her own country and left with an injury to her right eye’. Her sister, she said, had a knife thrust towards’ her face.” The family was picnicking at a Williamstown’s park near Melbourne. (The Age, November 13, 2005). ”I think families are staying home and avoiding going out, particularly women who wear the hijab, because we have seen that they are particularly targeted”, said Australian Arabic Council deputy chairman, Mr Taimor Hazou.

In February 2009, a Muslim student at the University of Western Sydney – the cesspool of Australian universities – was racially abused and assaulted by one of the University’s unskilled general staff. Despite overwhelming evidence of racially-motivated attack and the fact that the staff has admitted using racist language and violence, the University concocted and used baseless allegations to justify the student’s exclusion from the University just a few months before he was scheduled to complete his graduate study. The student was accused of calling another staff a “racist”, a form of bullying employed by Anglo-Australians not only to intimidate their victims of racism, but also to legitimise and normalise racism. While the student was denied the right to view the “evidence” against him, the accused staff continues to enjoy the University’s protection and support. Anglo Australians do not like to be called racist, but they love to preach “tolerance” with bigotry. When the student made a complaint to the NSW Ombudsman against the unfair and racist conduct of the University, the Ombudsman declined to investigate the case, because it would be against the Ombudsman’s role to act in public interest. The case highlights a policy that forms part of Australia’s systemic racism in higher education and employment.

For a decade, John Howard’s right-wing Liberal (Party) government reinvented and nurtured widespread racism and bigotry against Muslims. The September 11 events in America – which had nothing to do with Muslim nations – were a convenient tool used by the Howard’s government to enact anti-Muslim repressive and draconian “Anti-Terrorism” laws.

The current right-wing Labor Government of Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has adopted the same laws and discriminatory policy of its predecessor. On February 23, 2010, the Rudd Government unveiled its “Counter-Terrorism White Paper”, specifically targeted Muslims in Australia and people from a list of Muslim nations. Mr Rudd alleges that Australia is “under permanent terror threat” and “faces an increased terrorist threat from people born or raised in Australia”. Mr Rudd also announced tougher visa checks of people from ten nations. The Rudd government is refusing to name these nations, and no one knows if Israel, the world’s leading terrorist sate, is on the list.

To date, not a single Australian has been killed by “terrorists” in Australia. It is the Australian army that is participating (as a mercenary force to enforce U.S.-Zionist ideology) in the slaughter of innocent Muslims in Afghanistan and Iraq. In poor Afghanistan, the massacres of school children and women have become a daily ritual. In Iraq, an estimated 1.5 million innocent Iraqis (mostly women and children) have been slaughtered since 2003 – the third phase of a long holocaust that began in 1991 – in one of the most premeditated mass murders of civilians in modern history with the full support of the Australian government. Furthermore, during the Israeli attacks on the population of Gaza (under Israeli military siege since 2006) in December 2008-January 2009, when more than 1,420 defenceless Palestinians (mostly women and children) were massacred in cold blood, Australia was one of a handful of Western governments that supported Israel’s terror and war crimes, and continues to do so unconditionally.

Australia’s “Anti-Terrorism” laws are aimed at manipulating the public, fomenting fear and stoking up resentment against Muslims. Indeed, Muslim men in Australia were rounded-up, imprisoned, put on show trials and convicted of “terrorism”. Recently, some Muslim men were found guilty on preposterous charges – with no victims and no known targets. The aim is to intimidate and bully the entire Muslims community, and to send a message that Muslims are dangerous and that Muslim Australians do “not belong” to this country.

To make the situation worse for Muslims, the Australian media – a collection of anti-Muslim Zionist and proto-fascist outlets competing with each other to promote Israel-U.S. ideology – play an important role in the construction of racialised communities as “ethnic” and in inciting hatred and promoting Islamophobia among Anglo-Saxon Australians. Muslim Australians are demonised and presented as a ‘threat to the Australian values’. Adolf Hitler and his Nazi propagandists would have been pleased to have such racist propaganda organs on their side, inflaming xenophobia and promoting fascist ideology.

On the surface, Australia is a friendly and “multicultural” (best defined as anti-cultural) country until you scratch the surface. Most, if not all, Anglo-Saxon Australians see themselves as being uniquely pure and superior to all ‘other’ people by virtue of their Anglo-Saxon origin. It is a very backward thinking. Racially-motivated violence and discrimination formed the foundation of Anglo-Australia and were forged into the Australian national character, and remain so today alive and thriving throughout Australian culture.

Australia’s manufactured image of a “fair-go for all” is an illusion designed to project Australia as an equal society and cover-up deeply-entrenched racism. Just take a look at who is doing what. Privileged employments are reserved for the white Anglo-Saxon majority, with few places for those exotic faces that are chosen to tick the so-called “equal opportunity” box. White Anglo-Saxon middle-class and rich males “shape legislation, administration and judicial texts in their own image and to their own advantage”, wrote Margaret Thornton, a legal scholar and professor of law at the Australian National University (ANU). One of the many places to watch white Anglo-Saxon Australians indulging in keeping their privilege and defending their white ideology is the exclusively white clubs of the Australian federal and state parliaments, they are white only territories.

A survey on racial and ethnic discrimination in Australia by the Research School of Economics at the Australian National University released in June 2009 found clear evidence of racism in employment. The study revealed that Australians with “foreign” sounding names had greater difficulty of finding employment than those Australians with Anglo-Saxon names. According to the study, people with a Middle Eastern background (i.e., Muslims) had to send 127 per cent more applications for a waiter’s position than their Anglo-Saxon contenders [2]. As a result, unemployment among Australians from non-Anglo-Saxon background is significantly high. As a nation, Australia has no ‘Bill of Rights’, but it has ‘anti-discrimination’ legislation to legitimise racial discrimination.

A civilised Australia rests on the pillars of non-discriminatory equality and justice for all of its citizens, regardless of skin colour, race, religion, wealth and political affiliation. The best solution is for Australia to adopt non-discriminatory policies and makes people’s safety and wellbeing its top priority.

Ghali Hassan is an independent writer living in Australia.

[1] Smith B. & Reside, S. (2010, March). ‘Boys, You Wanna Give Me Some Action?’ Intervention into Policing of Racialised Communities in Melbourne. Melbourne: Legal Services Board of Victoria. (PDF).
[2] Booth, A., Leigh, A., & Varganova, E. (2009, June). Does Racial and Ethnic Discrimination Vary Across Minority Groups? Evidence from a Field Experiment, (Working paper). Canberra: Australian National University, Research School of Economics. (PDF).

On Being Anti-Sexy vs. Anti-Sex: a Radical (Pro)Feminist Perspective

[image of the not-so-many physiques and poses that are socially enforced (read: patriarchally/politically correct) for women to take if they want to be socially considered "sexy", is from here]

When a phenomenon such as pornographised "sexiness", vs. for example, Audre Lorde's envisioning, experience, and description of eroticism (see *here* and do a search in the bar to the left for "Uses of the Erotic", if that isn't already visible, and read pages 53 to 59), takes over dominant and non-dominant cultures, across regions, nations, and continents, it becomes very difficult to even have a conversation about sexual politics without someone claiming you are "anti-sex". I'm not entirely sure what people mean when they say radical feminists are "anti-sex" but a common denominator seems to be the following--one is anti-sex if one participates in any combination of the following:

Critiques of rape and rapism; activism to end gender and genderism, race and racism; political perspectives that call out sexual exploitation as harmfully misogynistic, racist, classist, and anti-Indigenist; work to challenge the mass production of corporate sexxx on the grounds that it is oppressive to women: sexist, racist, heterosexist, classist, and anti-Indigenist; the view that C.R.A.P. (see glossary to the right) is quite literally and very figuratively invested in the systemic, mass marketing of what "sexy" is, means, feels like, sounds like, looks like, tastes like, and smells like; a psychology and sociology promoted on television talk shows supporting hegemonic views of "sexy" thoughts, desires, fantasies, dreams and practices as unrelated to what pimps do, what white supremacists work to accomplish, and what heterosexists need in order to be aroused at all.

I'll make this statement, which I think is about as socially evident as observations get: our clothing selections, relationships, activities, politics, tones of voice, appearance, manner, disposition, senses of self, levels of empowerment, and frames of reference for understanding anything are, currently, not generally understood to be impacted by coercion, force, and trauma: patriarchal coercion, racist and genocidal force, woman-hating trauma.

The extent to which CRAP's version of "sexiness" (and one has to wonder: is there currently any other version that is socially viable?), rules us, cannot, in my view, be underestimated. I think in post-industrial societies this is particularly intense. The more industry there is, the more corporations pump out products for us to buy, the more "sexiness" is regulated. In the past, dominant religious institutions had a great amount of power to regulate what was considered "good" and "bad" about sex, and those institutions still do their work, oppressively. But Western capitalism is now far more powerful than white Christianity--to the extent they are not one and the same thing; and that's a scary thought. Not a sexy one. To me. How about you? Get back to me after reading Lorde's essay and this post. Okay? I'd like to know what you think.

What follows is a cross post from *here*.

Not Anti-sex. Anti-SEXY.
January 25, 2008, 3:42 am
Filed under: Antibodies, Grab a shovel, PUKE, gender pimps, rape extinction
I cannot imagine dedicating an entire post to why I am not anti-sex.  No one should have to be so bored, so futilely engaged.

If what I am about to object to is seen as synonymous with sex then you and I live on very different planets heading in two very different directions.  And I am not averse to telling you I think mine is more right.  If right is free, if right is a right turn out of Patriarchy Lane, that is.  

  I am anti-sexy.  

Anti ANYTHING that takes a form as sexy or trying to be sexy, or, only-succeeds-when-found-sexy.  I am anti use-sexy-to-get-rewards sexy.  Anti want-to-be-considered-sexy sexy.  Anti want-to-consider-others-as-sexy sexy.

I don’t agree with jobs that rely on sexy.  I don’t agree with exchanges that rely on sexy.  I don’t agree with sexuality that relies on sexy.  I don’t agree with institutions, businesses, constructs that need sexy for existence.

You might not be surprised then to find I am anti porn, stripping, BDSM, prostitution, hotness, objectification, cosmetic surgery.

I don’t need to hear about how you reclaimed sexy in porn, BDSM, stripping, prostitution, hotness, objectification, cosmetic surgery.  Sexy is not in your hands.  Sexy is the invasive appropriation of each others’ bodies and externalities.  Sexy is the lens you are forced to look through.  Sexy is the lens your are forced to be seen through.

Sexy is a constant state of against-your-will, without-consent, what’s-yours-is-mine, without-permission.

I don’t need to hear how you feel sexy when you are reading a good book.  I don’t need to hear how your so-and-so thinks you’re sexier when you don’t have on make up or haven’t worked out in a little while.  Sexy does not care.  Sexy is only accounting for the role you play when you ignore your full human capacity.  Sexy assumed your role all along.  Sexy will still be there when you want out. 

I don’t need to hear how you are helping young girls who have otherwise been abused and tortured and slain by patriarchy regain their “sexiness.”  Sexy will not help. Sexy entitles our pleasure centers to others.  Sexy is the visual rape primaries.   

Stop with the Sexy already.  

To those caught up in trying to Save the Sexy, reshape The Sexy, regain, reclaim, refresh The Sexy—please, we are feminists—we’ve got enough to do.

To those enslaved by sexy, beaten by sexy, afraid because of sexy, hidden by sexy, appropriated by sexy, employed by sexy, abused by sexy,… my sincerest apologies. We are working on it.

Feminist Revolutionary Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz says it Clearly: Stop Calling the U.S. a Nation of Immigrants!

Cross post from the American Indian activist known as the Bermuda Radical. The following post on his blog may be found here.

Stop Saying This Is a Nation of Immigrants!
Introduction from People of Color Organize!:
This article, written a few years back but relevant today, is an important point in reframing the immigrant-rights debate. Moreover, the nation-of-immigrants argument by immigrant-rights advocates fails to acknowledge history in order to wed immigrants, often the victims of exploitation, as loyalists to that history. Far more has been written on this topic, especially the anti-Black implications of many positions, but this piece is a critical comment about which organizers should be aware.
By Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz.

Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz is a long-time activist, university professor, and writer. In addition to numerous scholarly books and articles, she has written three historical memoirs, Red Dirt: Growing Up Okie, Outlaw Woman: Memoir of the War Years, 1960-1975, and Blood on the Border: A Memoir of the Contra War about the 1980s contra war against the Sandinistas.

A nation of immigrants: This is a convenient myth developed as a response to the 1960s movements against colonialism, neocolonialism, and white supremacy. The ruling class and its brain trust offered multiculturalism, diversity, and affirmative action in response to demands for decolonization, justice, reparations, social equality, an end of imperialism, and the rewriting of history — not to be “inclusive” — but to be accurate. What emerged to replace the liberal melting pot idea and the nationalist triumphal interpretation of the “greatest country on earth and in history,” was the “nation of immigrants” story.

By the 1980s, the “waves of immigrants” story even included the indigenous peoples who were so brutally displaced and murdered by settlers and armies, accepting the flawed “Bering Straits” theory of indigenous immigration some 12,000 years ago. Even at that time, the date was known to be wrong, there was evidence of indigenous presence in the Americas as far back as 50,000 years ago, and probably much longer, and entrance by many means across the Pacific and the Atlantic — perhaps, as Vine Deloria jr. put it, footsteps by indigenous Americans to other continents will one day be acknowledged. But, the new official history texts claimed, the indigenous peoples were the “first immigrants.” They were followed, it was said, by immigrants from England and Africans, then by Irish, and then by Chinese, Eastern and Southern Europeans, Russians, Japanese, and Mexicans. There were some objections from African Americans to referring to enslaved Africans hauled across the ocean in chains as “immigrants,” but that has not deterred the “nation of immigrants” chorus.

Misrepresenting the process of European colonization of North America, making everyone an immigrant, serves to preserve the “official story” of a mostly benign and benevolent USA, and to mask the fact that the pre-US independence settlers, were, well, settlers, colonial setters, just as they were in Africa and India, or the Spanish in Central and South America. The United States was founded as a settler state, and an imperialistic one from its inception (“manifest destiny,” of course). The settlers were English, Welsh, Scots, Scots-Irish, and German, not including the huge number of Africans who were not settlers. Another group of Europeans who arrived in the colonies also were not settlers or immigrants: the poor, indentured, convicted, criminalized, kidnapped from the working class (vagabonds and unemployed artificers), as Peter Linebaugh puts it, many of who opted to join indigenous communities.

Only beginning in the 1840s, with the influx of millions of Irish Catholics pushed out of Ireland by British policies, did what might be called “immigration” begin. The Irish were discriminated against cheap labor, not settlers. They were followed by the influx of other workers from Scandinavia, Eastern and Southern Europe, always more Irish, plus Chinese and Japanese, although Asian immigration was soon barred. Immigration laws were not even enacted until 1875 when the US Supreme Court declared the regulation of immigration a federal responsibility. The Immigration Service was established in 1891.

Buried beneath the tons of propaganda — from the landing of the English “pilgrims” (fanatic Protestant Christian evangelicals) to James Fennimore Cooper’s phenomenally popular “Last of the Mohicans” claiming “natural rights” to not only the indigenous peoples territories but also to the territories claimed by other European powers — is the fact that the founding of the United States was a division of the Anglo empire, with the US becoming a parallel empire to Great Britain. From day one, as was specified in the Northwest Ordinance that preceded the US Constitution, the new republic for empire (as Jefferson called the US) envisioned the future shape of what is now the lower 48 states of the US. They drew up rough maps, specifying the first territory to conquer as the “Northwest Territory,” ergo the title of the ordinance. That territory was the Ohio Valley and the Great Lakes region, which was filled with indigenous farming communities.

Once the conquest of the “Northwest Territory” was accomplished through a combination of genocidal military campaigns and bringing in European settlers from the east, and the indigenous peoples moved south and north for protection into other indigenous territories, the republic for empire annexed Spanish Florida where runaway enslaved Africans and remnants of the indigenous communities that had escaped the Ohio carnage fought back during three major wars (Seminole wars) over two decades. In 1828, President Andrew Jackson (who had been a general leading the Seminole wars) pushed through the Indian Removal Act to force all the agricultural indigenous nations of the Southeast, from Georgia to the Mississippi River, to transfer to Oklahoma territory that had been gained through the “Louisiana Purchase” from France. Anglo settlers with enslaved Africans seized the indigenous agricultural lands for plantation agriculture in the Southern region. Many moved on into the Mexican province of Texas — then came the US military invasion of Mexico in 1846, seizing Mexico City and forcing Mexico to give up its northern half through the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. California, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Texas were then opened to “legal” Anglo settlement, also legalizing those who had already settled illegally, and in Texas by force. The indigenous and the poor Mexican communities in the seized territory, such as the Apache, Navajo, and Comanche, resisted colonization, as they had resisted the Spanish empire, often by force of arms, for the next 40 years. The small class of Hispanic elites welcomed and collaborated with US occupation.

Are “immigrants” the appropriate designation for the indigenous peoples of North America? No.

Are “immigrants” the appropriate designation for enslaved Africans? No.

Are “immigrants” the appropriate designation for the original European settlers? No.

Are “immigrants” the appropriate designation for Mexicans who migrate for work to the United States? No. 
They are migrant workers crossing a border created by US military force. Many crossing that border now are also from Central America, from the small countries that were ravaged by US military intervention in the 1980s and who also have the right to make demands on the United States.

So, let’s stop saying “this is a nation of immigrants.”