The Australian Citizen Dog Whistle

“There is no more important title in our democracy than ‘Australian Citizen’.

And we should make no apology for asking those who seek to join our Australian family to join us as Australian patriots - committed to the values that define us, committed to the values that unite us.

Our success as a multicultural society is built on strong foundations which include the confidence of the Australian people that their government, and it alone, determines who comes to Australia.”
- Malcom Turnbull calling for migrants to become 'Australian patriots'

That’s right Malcolm. You should make no apology. Because nobody actually fucking asked you for one. Australians have always expected new citizens to be committed to the values that define and unite us. That’s why we make them say that while they’re swearing an oath of allegiance to the British monarch.

It’s been part of the citizenship ceremony since well before Messrs Morrison and Dutton tried turning it into a trial by fire. My mum (please don’t deport her) swore an oath of allegiance as a new Australian citizen back in the early seventies, when Dutton and Morrison were still soiling themselves.

Those two haven’t come a long way since then, but multiculturalism certainly has. And it’s got fuck all to do with people having confidence in the government determining who comes here. Because the federal government has been doing that since Federation. It’s your fucking job.

Not that I have a great deal of confidence in how your government does that. I mean when your immigration minister adds ‘flight attendants’ to the list of eligible 457 visa jobs the day after meeting with the head of Qantas, I’m not confident in him alone determining who comes to (and stays in) Australia.

When your immigration minister calls Lebanese immigration in the seventies a mistake, or denigrates women and LGBTIQ people, or either covers up or flat out lies about abuse in immigration detention, or just generally opens his mouth, I’m not confident he shares the values that define and unite us.

And when your lazy, incompetent, misanthropic immigration minister - who has fuck all respect for the laws of this country already - asks that even more of his extensive powers be exempt from judicial scrutiny, and you serve up this pile of horseshit in his defence, well you get my drift.

The strong foundations of multiculturalism in Australia are built in part on acceptance, understanding and education - three areas where Australians have fuck all confidence in your government’s determination – but the most important foundation of multiculturalism is trust. That trust is seriously undermined every time another Liberal prime minister attempts to breathe life into his political carcass by reaching for the dog whistle.

I’m sure you make no apology for that either.

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