On Wednesday night Channel 7′s Today Tonight showed a story about Asians coming to Australia. It was another pointlessly xenophobic story just designed to create some sort of fear or something in the community. It was also severely flawed.
The report said that for the first time, Asian migrants outnumbered European migrants coming into Australia. Even though it used last years data from the census, what it did not take into account was that there are more Asians who reside in Australia temporarily for study or work than there are Europeans who do the same. If we were looking simply at those who were here as permanent residents, then you would find that the number of European migrants still well outnumber the number of Asian migrants.
The report also asked a couple of 22 year old Chinese girls who had migrated here some very pointless questions. The reporter, Bryan Seymour, asked the girls if they knew who Donald Bradman was. DOES IT REALLY MATTER IF THEY DON’T KNOW WHO DONALD BRADMAN IS? NOT EVERYONE CARES ABOUT CRICKET!!! By the way, why didn’t Mr Seymour ask this inane question to an Indian or English migrant?
Mr Seymour also asked the girls, who have been in Australia for just three years, if they have eaten a pavlova. OK, so I expect the immigration officials to show up on my doorstep soon to deport me because I haven’t eaten a for about five years. (I will just be like Cornelia Rau or Vivianne Solon, except that I was born here!) Obviously you cannot live in Australia if you don’t eat pavlova! Pavlova is obviously our national meal and to be truly Aussie you have to eat it morning, noon and night!
You’d think that most people do not take rubbish shows like Today Tonight seriously yet today I over heard an elderly couple on the bus chatting away about this story as if Anna Coren’s word was Gospel truth. They were repeating all of the tripe that they had heard and it made me feel quite ill. The old man also identified himself as a Liberal voter and called Labor’s Julia Gillard Pinocchio, (Because it’s not as though any Liberal Party politicians have ever told lies, right Prime Minister?!) so we know where his views on immigration stand.
Being a Melbournian, I quite like living in a diverse society with people who not only look different, but also have different points of view to me. I have lots of friends who were born in countries from all over the globe and they are all very dear to me. I actually take things very personally when someone suggests that one of my friends shouldn’t consider themselves to be an Aussie just because they don’t have blonde hair and blue eyes and eat pavlova every day. Being Australian should not be an exclusive club that you can only be a member of if you look or speak a certain way. We should try to be more accepting of migrants who come to this country regardless of where they were born and not just ‘tolerate’ them. (I hate how people, especially politicians, proclaim us to be ‘tolerant’ as if this was a good this. To me tolerance is just putting up with someone.)