Breakdown of a race riot

December 12, 2005 9:35 AM

For reference, follow the links in my previous post.

  1. From two groups of society, add into the mix minorities from both who have not learnt to accept each other.
  2. Simmer for a prolonged period.
  3. Bring to a boil by a random act of violence.
  4. Throw in a media that is all too willing to portray the story along racial lines.
  5. For extra kick, have racists that don’t even live in the area crawl out of the woodwork, looking for any excuse to spew and act on their vitriol.
  6. Top it off with alcohol and mob mentality.
  7. Serve bloody rare.
  8. At this stage, you can add the police into it as an afterthought or garnish.

Easier-said-than-done solutions?

  1. Address the underlying distrust between the groups with community involvement, education and mutual interaction.
  2. Tame the media to be more colour blind, more objective.
  3. Increased police presence and involvement in the community to ease the tension between groups and to serve as in-between.
  4. Louts will be louts. Provide alternatives to idleness and loitering because “idle hands do the devil’s work”.
  5. Arrest those who incites violence or behave anti-socially – nip it in the bud instead of letting it fester.

7 thoughts on “Breakdown of a race riot

  1. emiryo

    Oz was quite a fascist state back in the past. Things had changed for better, but racist problem will still persist like the rest of the world.

    Even with the racist issue down, there’s still religion, class political, ideology diff.

    Due to their own selfishness and greed, people from the same group will even fight among themselves when there’s no more common “enemy”.

    Certain groups will take every op to blow things up. Sometimes even staging it themselves.

    Best way is to counter propaganda with propaganda and enforce stricter laws.

  2. mooiness

    Address the root causes, and arrest perpetrators from both sides.

    This particular instance had been brewing from the ongoing harassment of local beach goers by groups of Lebanese youths.

    You then get a bunch of vigilantes, whipped up by the media, and reinforced by the racists. The result was what you saw happened.

    It is very unfortunate that the greater Lebanese community and indeed that of anyone else who “looked different” had been dragged into this.

    Those who got attacked on the weekend demonstrated a classic case of being in “the wrong place at the wrong time”.

  3. Larawannabe

    hullo.. been reading ur blog for awhile now. good stuff 🙂

    my 2 cents.. the world should stop harping on religious and race issues. esp the media. its just too personal. history has proven time and again that it has never bring anybody any good *sigh*

  4. mooiness

    lara: thanks! 🙂

    Media all over the world thrives on human misery and sensationalism. Not discounting the fact that Lebanese gangs had a part to play in this, but imagine if the bashing up of the lifesavers was reported as “3 lifesavers attacked” as opposed to “3 lifesavers attacked by Lebanese youth”. How much difference that that would have made.

    And yes prejudices based on race or religion is highly misguided and brings no good to anyone. I’m quite saddened by the fact that Lebanese families that have lived in Oz for generations now fear to go to certain parts of Sydney because of this.

  5. Andrew Lim

    They should do what Singapore does. Give them all one common enemy to hate – the government. =)

    Seriously though, I’ve heard from friends there that there’s alot of racism in Australia. A friend got beaten up there, and another two told me their tutors in University always picked on them because they were Asian.

    Mooiness, aren’t you Chinese/Asian? Ever got experience anything like that?

  6. mooiness

    andrew: heh that’s a good one re: government. 🙂

    About the racism, I did experience some when my family first migrated here. Back then there were very little Asians in Perth so it is worse than now. It is unfortunate that your friends still experience it, especially in a University as well.

    All I can advise is that – you pick the appropriate time to stand up for yourself, or to walk away. For example, with the tutor I would have said something back or make a complaint. Other times I’d ignore idiots that are obviously looking for a fight. One time at a club a drunk guy did just that, I didn’t stare at him but I looked at his friends instead and they were embarassed for him and pulled him away.

    With regards to Sydney, I’d just avoid the trouble spots. Especially where you could sense the tension from previous troubles.

    Bear in mind that the racists are very much in the minority. I work and play with ppl of all colours and creed, government officials and police are helpful and Australia is still a nice place to live for me. I also believe that being a minority one should try to interact with the majority more. Basically don’t huddle together with one’s own kind all the time. This is especially applicable to overseas student who come here and don’t try to experience the Aussie life at all – what a waste!


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