Pauline Hanson’s tweet backfires badly
TWITTER has contributed one unambiguously positive thing to society.
It has given normal Australians the chance to regularly dunk on their politicians, with often hilarious results.
The latest victim of this phenomenon is One Nation leader Pauline Hanson.
Yesterday afternoon Ms Hanson noticed the hashtag #WakeUpToRacism was trending on the social media platform, and tried to appropriate it to highlight "anti-white racism".
She urged her followers to share their own experiences of anti-white racism.
A twitter mob is trying to get me deplatformed. I think we can turn their hashtag into a force for good. Anti-white racism is often ignored because victims remain silent but it is important the truth get out. Use #WakeUpToRacism to share your experiences of anti-white racism.-PH— Pauline Hanson 🇦🇺 (@PaulineHansonOz) August 15, 2019
The reaction was not what Ms Hanson had hoped for.
A relatively small number of people took the request seriously - and responded by arguing anti-white racism did not exist.
There’s no such thing as anti white racism.— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) August 15, 2019
Racism depends on systemic disempowerment.
What you think you are experiencing is called prejudice, but it looks more like whining. 🤷🏼♀️
But the majority of respondents decided to keep their tongues firmly in cheek.
Here is a selection of the best reactions.
There's no such thing as "anti-white racism" in Australia.— Pé Resists (@4everNeverTrump) August 15, 2019
Societal racism manifests as de jure and de facto discrimination from those who hold a privileged place in society.
What you're describing to be "anti-white racism" is actually "white fear of losing privileged status".
Ms Hanson's tweet evoked memories of her infamous "It's OK to be white" motion, which caused a kerfuffle in the Senate last year.
In that motion, she urged her colleagues to acknowledge "the deplorable rise of anti-white racism and attacks on Western civilisation".
The catchphrase "It's OK to be white" was originally conceived by trolls on 4chan's "politically incorrect" image board.
Signs and cards bearing the phrase have popped up in all sorts of public places since, occasionally inducing outrage.
"I hope that the Senate does the reasonable thing today by supporting this motion. Anyone who pays attention to the news or spends any time on social media has to acknowledge that there has been a rise in anti-white racism and a rise in attacks on the very ideals of Western civilisation," Ms Hanson said before the vote last October.
"I would also hope the Senate does the right thing and acknowledges that it is indeed OK to be white. Such a simple sentence should go without saying, but I suspect many members in this place would struggle to say it.
"People have a right to be proud of their cultural background, whether they are black, white or brindle. If we can't agree on this, I think it's safe to say anti-white racism is well and truly rife in our society."
Her motion was defeated by a surprisingly close margin of 31-28, as many government senators voted in its favour.
Coalition Senate leader Mathias Cormann claimed they had supported Ms Hanson's motion by mistake, due to an "administrative process failure".
He moved to redo the vote, and at the second time of asking it was defeated on the voices.
"Both Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Senate leader Mathias Cormann have woken with white guilt and withdrawn their support," a furious Ms Hanson said in response.
"It's one of the most remarkable days ever in Australian politics that Labor, Liberal and the Greens are now united in saying they would vote against a parliamentary motion condemning attacks on Western civilisation and white people because of their skin colour.
"If I had said it's OK to be black, every single senator in the chamber would have voted for it.
"As I stated on the floor of the Senate, I have always believed it is OK to be black, white or brindle."
It seems anti-white racism is still something of a bugbear for Ms Hanson.
The life expectancy of Indigenous men in remote areas is as low as 36 years. #WakeUpToRacism— 3GCT (@BarrysChins) August 15, 2019
That is why all the white people go to the beach in summer to risk skin cancer just to look like a brown person so they won’t be discriminated against.— RAY LISTER (@rayclister) August 15, 2019
Data shows most anti white racism happens in winter when the tan has gone. It’s just unfair.
The other day the grocery store was out of mayonnaise, and when I told them my cookout needed a full complement of condiments the manager failed to call the other local branches to have a jar delivered urgently. #WakeUpToRacism— Daniel Summers (@WFKARS) August 15, 2019
One time I got on the city bus and there were no seats left. Not a single POC volunteered to give up their seat to me, a white man. #WakeUpToRacism— Working Class Patriot 🇺🇸 (@NearlyEvil) August 15, 2019
I’m definitely treated differently for being white. Last month for instance, I sailed through immigration checks in Australia, USA and Canada while my brown friends were treated like terrorists and given the 3rd degree everywhere we went. #WakeUpToRacism— 💧Katherine of Tarragon (@katticus28) August 15, 2019
The Woolies near me doesn’t have the mayonnaise I like. I have to go to the one at Ashfield. #wakeuptoracism— Jordan Raskopoulos (@JordanRasko) August 15, 2019
I sometimes get mistaken for @drchrisbrown. Not all white people look the same.— Mark Humphries (@markhumphries) August 15, 2019
I went through a tunnel and couldn't access Triple M for about 3 minutes and 42 seconds #AntiWhiteRacism— Ketan Joshi (@KetanJ0) August 15, 2019
How come I'm never followed around Kmart by security or have my self check out shopping checked? Am I not capable of theft because of my skin?#WakeUpToRacism— Phid McAwesome (@PhidMcAwesome) August 15, 2019
Once, before a public performance, i got nervous (sweaty palms, weak knees, heavy arms etc) & vomited on myself. My mum's spaghetti, I think. Despite trying to appear calm, I forgot what I had to say. A crowd full of non-white people were generally unsupportive. #WakeUpToRacism— Even Stephen A (@BuduInya) August 15, 2019
I was dancin' & singin' & movin' to the groovin' And just when it hit me somebody turned around and shouted "play that funky music white boy. Play that funky music right. Play that funky music white boy. Lay down that boogie & play that funky music till you die." #wakeuptoracism— Matt Burke (@matttburke) August 15, 2019
I ordered a green smoothie once and the guy put it in a paper cup instead of a transparent plastic one so I couldn’t Instagram it. #WakeUpToRacism— Feckin’ Eejit (@GrandSoLike) August 15, 2019
My white friend is scared to speak out but he is sick & tired of being singled for higher wages, longer lifespan, better access to housing, education & healthcare— Candide (@KafkaVoltaire) August 15, 2019
And he has never had anybody at work ask him where he is from, ever
Enough is enough
Growing up as a white child in Australia in the 1970's, watching B&W TV was very confronting. I liked the white bits on the TV screen but I was deeply traumatised by all the grey and black bits. Thankyou Pauline Hanson for encouraging me to speak of my pain! #WakeUpToRacism— Peter Murphy (@PeterWMurphy1) August 15, 2019
I'm businessing in Hong Kong it's all good and all of a sudden a bunch of Asian kids come rushing into the airport and now I can't get my flight back to Australia - so oppressive. #AntiWhiteRacism— Solo Monk (@JJKALE2) August 15, 2019
I’ve turned my nose up at white chocolate all my life.— 👣 🌏 💫 Paul Dutton 🌳 🦅 🐾 (@pauldutton1968) August 15, 2019
Black Panther is on Netflix. What about White Panther? #WakeUpToRacism— Justin Whittaker, Esq. (@punkrockproseco) August 15, 2019
Did you even bother to look up "racism" in the dictionary— Nightmaredoll (@nightmaredoll7) August 15, 2019
Dictionaries help you figure out what words actually mean. Even the small words.
They can be found online and also in libraries (for now).