The starting point in coming to grips with social and cultural issues lies with the state of the universities, particularly the social science and humanities faculties. Arts faculties in Australia and across the Western world have mostly abandoned their traditional role as the guardians and promoters of the Judeo-Christian tradition, as a result of being largely captured by the counter-cultural radical Left.
There has been an assumption that while the takeover of universities by left-wing radicals is annoying, it is of little real long-term consequence. The assumption is that most students, upon joining the real world of work, will leave the infantile preoccupations of university behind them, resulting in little long-term damage. Although there is a strong element of truth in this, a great deal of damage is nonetheless still being done to our culture by ideas coming out of universities.
Since their takeover by the Left, many universities have used their position to try to indoctrinate future generations of societal elites against the very values upon which our civilisation is built, which constitutes a total reversal of their original mission. There is an urgent need to think of means that would restore balance to the universities and return them to their original role as the guardians of our civilisation and culture.
As federal Education Minister Brendan Nelson has pointed out, many university education departments have now become little more than quasi-sociology departments. Many of these departments teach their education graduates to see their mission as one of using education as a subversive vehicle to bring about radical social change, rather than to provide a traditional education for their students. The result is a generation of schoolchildren who have been fed all manner of politically correct beliefs (such as black-armband history), but who are all too often functionally illiterate and innumerate and hence incapable of playing a full role in society.
The damage wrought to our culture by the Left is also becoming increasingly prominent in the growing number of badly dysfunctional communities in Australia, perhaps best typified by Macquarie Fields, which is, however, only one of many. It seems reasonable to suggest that, in these communities, there has been a terrible cultural breakdown and a perversion of the important social values and civility that most Australians are thankfully still able to take for granted.
Most thinking about the problems of our least fortunate communities has instead by and large been left to socialist academics and the social welfare lobby. Leaving this task to these representatives of the intellectual Left, which has been reduced to continually chanting the vapid slogan of social justice and asking for money to be thrown at the problem, has been nothing less than a total disaster for these communities.
The damage wrought to our culture by the Left is also becoming increasingly prominent in the growing number of badly dysfunctional communities in Australia, perhaps best typified by Macquarie Fields, which is, however, only one of many.
There is an urgent need for a larger, better funded and more professional conservative movement in Australia, possibly loosely modelled along similar lines to the successful movement in the US.