MediaWatch: Bunch Of Tossers
I was saying off camera to Tim - look we will never integrate like other cultures have done because it’s against our religion to drink alcohol and go to bars and clubs. He said "Ok, let me get that on camera". I think what I said on camera was "We will never integrate to the extent that other communities have been able to and it also depends on what your definition of integration is."For starters, I don't believe this story of Ahmed's, because saying something completely innocuous and specific like "We won't integrate like other communities have because we don't go to clubs and bars" (amazingly, there are folk of other religions and cultures who don't go to bars or drink alcohol, either!) is very much different to saying "We won't integrate like other communities have, and anyway it depends upon your definition of integration." If the Muslim guy had have said the latter on camera and he meant to say the former and the producer knew what he was trying to say, said producer would have asked the guy to restate his comment because his intended remark and the actual bear no resemblance to each other. The former is harmless and specific. The latter could be interpreted in many ways, both harmlessly or dangerously or anywhere in between. As it turned out, the actual quote was
we will never integrate, the way other communities integrate purely because of the fact that you have to draw a line [my emphasis] with what your idea of integration is and what our idea of integration and accepting the practices of other people are.Ahmed was not taken out of context, then. What followed "We will never integrate" doesn't qualify the statement "We will never integrate" in any meaningful way.
The luvvies will nod furiously when hearing Ahmed's words above. Ahmed is wrong, however. Australians won't, and shouldn't be expected to accept all the practices of other cultures. When all new Australians enter Australian society, they must adjust their lifestyles to fit within the host country's common idea of integration. They must realise how far they can deviate from the norm, and work within those confines. If they can't do that, they shouldn't be citizens of this country. For example, the tolerance within Australian society obviously accepts that many Muslims aren't going to go to bars and drink alcohol. It accepts that many Muslim women will cover themselves up in varying degrees. It also accepts a wide range of different worshipping rituals of Muslims, and many, many other distinctively Muslim practices. HOWEVER, it will not accept clitoral mutilation. Or honour killing. Or jihad. Or a host of other things that are sanctioned in the Koran. Ahmed himself doesn't "draw a line" when he says "accepting the practices of other people are." He could be saying "accepting the practices of other people are, [for example not drinking alcohol or going to bars.]" He could also be saying "accepting the practices of other people are, [for example killing apostates and infidels who we haven't signed a peace treaty with.]" Both are Muslim practices sanctioned by the Koran, both are not practiced by all Muslims. It seems that Ahmed is saying we should accept both in this country, simply because we need to "draw a line" between what we think is okay and what they think is okay. Who are we to tell "other people" what is okay and what isn't? Hell, why have laws at all?
MediaWatch, you don't have a story here. When you say
Which is pretty much word for word what Ahmed told us he’d said.I counter with So what? Ahmed's recalled statement and his actual statement are both anti-integrationist in nature, because they both clearly imply that the current residents of Australia should just accept and make room for ALL the practices of ALL Muslims, making no distinction between those that don't affect the liberal ethos of our society and those that do. Ahmed's remark was fundamentally anti-integrationist - Today Tonight's edit was justified.