In reaction to Prime Minister John Howard’s accelerating anti-terrorist campaign, Australian Muslim groups have voiced their displeasure by charging the prime minister with “inciting hatred”. Following the example of their American cousins, the Muslim groups have decided that such reasonable anti-terrorist efforts as controlling immigration and jailing those who incite violence represents racist hatred, per the Sydney Morning Herald (thanks to Terminator):
Muslims rallying in Sydney say the Federal Government’s proposed anti-terrorism laws would be a major infringement of their rights.
Hundreds of members of the Muslim community met at Punchbowl, in Sydney’s south-west, to demonstrate their concerns that the Federal Government’s actions were inciting hatred towards their culture.
Federation of Australian Muslim Students and Youth (FAMSY) National president Chaaban Omran said the Prime Minister, John Howard, had failed his community by not doing enough to stop anti-Muslim discourse.
Mr Omran said the recent London bombings, calls by politicians to ban Muslim headdress in public schools and the media’s negative portrayal of the religion were feeding a growing prejudice.
But he described Canberra’s proposed new anti-terror laws as be the largest infringement on the rights of Muslim Australians.
Earlier this month, Mr Howard flagged a new package of security measures, including tighter checks on citizenship applicants, jail terms for inciting violence and police powers to detain suspects without charge for up to a fortnight.
“Instead of coming out with practical steps to address terrorism, these laws will just work to create more intolerance towards Muslims,” Mr Omran told AAP.