The Pros And Cons Of Racial Discrimination In Australia

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The Racial Discrimination Act was implemented in 1975 and was drafted in response to a global push to codify protections for Indigenous Australians and other racial minorities. Section 18C of this act makes it unlawful to offend, insult, humiliate or intimate an individual or a group of people on the basis of race, colour or national origin ( This clause was brought to the fore front of national debate as popular conservative columnist, Andrew Bolt, was found in violation of this law when he accused mix-raced Indigenous Australians of using their heritage to claim government benefits. The Abbott government pledged to repeal section 18C but has subsequently withdrawn the motion following severe backlash from the wider community (Aston.) South Australian Family First Senator, Bob Day, has since introduced a private member bill to repeal 18C, insisting that
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We have it to say very controversial things." ( The issue isn’t about whether racism is good or bad, but whether the government has a legitimate role in intruding into and censoring free speech. It is perfectly appropriate to support the repeal of 18C without directly endorsing racism. Not everything that is considered morally abhorrent by society is criminalised by the government. For example adultery, which is stigmatised by the community, is completely lawful. Possible consequences of committing such an act include breaking up with a spouse, sanctions from private institutions and a damaged reputation. All this can accomplished without government interference. Similar to adultery, racist hate speech should be a matter dealt with by the community and private institutions, not the state. The government does not have a genuine role in regulating dialogue and freedoms ought not to be constrained on the basis of subjective
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