Two days after New Zealand’s worst shootings, Anjum Rahman published a scorching opinion piece about her “absolutely blind anger.”
Ms. Rahman, a Muslim activist, has given her and others a way of “begging, begging … demanding” the government’s efforts to “raise the level of discrimination” in the country over the years. Described in detail.
“We’ve escaped from years of intense advocacy with the government, post-meetings, raising issues, and trying to get the government to take it seriously,” she told SBS News this week.
“It was devastating to have this happen after all that effort and no warnings or lack of preparation.
“I [survivors] Recently they say they thought it was a betrayal. ”
More than 18 months after Australian terrorists killed 51 worshipers at two Christchurch mosques, Ms. Rahman said threats and ill-treatment continued.
A recent study by the University of Auckland found that hate crimes against Islam in New Zealand surged in the aftermath of the slaughter, “making the country more dangerous to Islam and other minorities.”
“For many, there are still concerns,” Rahman said.
“Women reported that they could sit near the bus door and get off immediately. All the other little things they do because they don’t know are still afraid.”
A woman reported that she could sit near the bus door and get off immediately … there is still the fear.
The emergence of far-right fringe parties in national campaigns has also done little to stop their anxiety.
New Zealand’s far-right expert sociologist Paul Spoonley said such parties have narrow but alarming support.
“There are four groups in particular, and when you put them together, you get only 1-2 percent of the votes,” he said.
“”[But] We are beginning to see some of the far-right views beginning to move to this very conservative political fringe and gain a much larger audience. I don’t think it’s a large audience (a few percent of the population) yet, but I’m still very worried. ”
Rahman fears that their support base could expand in today’s misinformation climate.
“It’s great that it doesn’t resonate politically, but Facebook and [they] We are increasing our followers. ”
Aliya Danzeisen of the Islamic Women’s Council in New Zealand said the group is promoting online hate speech.
“If you continue [their] Facebook pages and comments deal with immigrants and Muslims. ”
However, Danseysen emphasized that the majority of New Zealanders are not in favor of rhetoric.
“I think this year’s elections are very exciting. The vast majority of people embrace kindness and inclusion.”
Voice to underrated people
Ibrahim Omar’s political devotion was inspired by Christchurch’s mosque attack.
Refugees from Eritrea are one of the few Muslims competing for New Zealand’s highest-level government seats.
“We still have problems with racism, so I really wanted to step up and work on eradicating racism little by little,” he said.
“It’s time to take it to the next level, bring our own voice into the room, and oppose racism and prejudice.”
Omar said the rise of the far right is affecting the minds of the minority community.
“After all, it’s a big concern for us because we’re our goal. For the past three to four years, we’ve seen it every day, year after year. Unless we’re all, it just gets worse. As human beings, whether we are black, brown, or white, we get together and call for it. ”
Unless we all come together as humanity to call it, it will only get worse.
Professor Richard Shaw of New Zealand’s Massey University said the far-right party is more ingrained in New Zealand politics than ever before.
And although they lack meaningful political support, he said they could not be dismissed as helpless.
“I think this is a feature of this campaign we’ve never seen before. It’s dismissing it and suggesting that the fact that it’s not represented in a voting pattern is the cause of complacency. It’s not wise. ”
Professor Shaw said he believes that Christchurch’s attack, along with the COVID-19 pandemic, may have created fertile land for the emergence of such groups.
“In my sense, Christchurch has something to do with it, but I think people are sitting at home, so the pandemic really amplified it … they’re disappearing new rabbit holes. I will find it. ”
Professor Spoonley agrees.
“I think the pandemic has caused some anxiety in the community, and I think some of those views, those about conspiracy, and some of the views that pandemics are hoaxes have begun to emerge.”
Call to strengthen hate speech
On Saturday, New Zealand will vote to elect its 53rd Parliament.
Opinion polls suggest that Labor leader Jacinda Ardern, who is the prime minister and opposes Kuomintang leader Judith Collins, will comfortably retain power.
The Christchurch attack was a decisive moment for the youngest prime minister in history in the United States.
Only six days after the massacre, the now 40-year-old boy announced a ban on military semi-automatic rifles and assault rifles. In less than a month, new gun control passed parliament, and two months later Ms. Ardern was launched globally. A campaign to tackle terrorist and violent extremist content online.
Her swift action has been praised by the Islamic community, but some feel that there is one serious problem she has not yet overcome. It’s a religious hate speech.
It is what Imam’s Gamalhuda, who was preaching at the Ardern Mosque at the time of the slaughter, sees it as Ms. Ardern’s next challenge, assuming she is in power.
Hate speech law is subject to New Zealand human rights law, but only mentions race, color and ethnicity, not religion.
In September, Ms. Ardern visited Christchurch for the first time since the Australian terrorist ruling in August. So she vowed to strengthen legislation if she was reelected.
When I met Mr. Arden during my visit, it was a request from Mr. Fuda.
She wanted to make changes sooner, but the Labor Party said it “couldn’t achieve its final term.”
New Zealand is currently governed by a coalition of three parties. Labor, Greens, and populist New Zealand First. It is led by Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters.
“The government is in trouble trying to introduce something to deal with hate speech by one of its coalition partners, the New Zealand First Party,” Spoonley said.
“Public polls seem to suggest that it’s likely a Labor government. So if [that is the case] We anticipate a very rapid move to introduce the hate speech method in New Zealand. ”
Rahman admits that the community has been protected since the mosque attack, but she believes she can do much more.
“I think it was around the legislation that there was a stagnation,” she said.
“We hope to work with the next government to increase the willingness and impetus to make the changes we really need.”