Pat Condell and Fear Mongering


People are basically good.

Oh we may denigrate the alternative view as baddies with no hearts who will run at the taste of our cold steel but we deep down realise that the “bad guys” are effectively human too.

If you prick us do we not bleed?

Sweden’s made a kind gesture. And Pat Condell not only thinks it’s stupid but also flogs bullshit simultaneously.

We need to be better than Pat Condell. We are atheists, not fucking dickheads. We are capable of showing human empathy for those who struggle through war and who wish for better lives.

Pat leaves it up in the air as to what the negative effects of compassion would be. Why? Because he doesn’t expect his fans to actually read the damn article. Remember when I said that his views were similar to the EDL?

His entire tweet is designed to evoke the idea that Sweden will be swamped by a horde of swarthy Syrians and leaves the horror story to your imagination. Why these Syrians may

1. TAKE ALL OUR JORBS!

2. Steal Our Women

3. Creeping Sharia Law

4. They will breed faster and make the traditional Swedish People Endangered

5. Crime

6. Sneak in Terrorists

7. Spoil traditional Swedish Cuisine by introducing them to Baklava, Lamb and Moutabel

Seriously?

If one were to read Pat’s tweet you would not be mistaken in thinking that Sweden’s offered to take in 2 Million Refugees. The truth of the matter is that all Sweden has done is change the status of Asylum for Syria. No longer will Asylum Seekers (AKA illegal immigrants claiming asylum) from Syria be seen on a case by case basis but instead there is a blanket acceptance for all existing Asylum Applications. Normally around half of these would get permanent residence and the other half would get three year visas with the view that they could either return at the end or apply to stay on based on what they are doing and what plans they have.

Would you like to know what WHOPPING amount of people have been given Asylum?

8000.

Not 2,000,000. A number 0.4% of what Pat Condell flogged.

I have heard this kind of speech before. It is not the speech of progressiveness but of bigotry. It’s fear mongering and attempting to strike fear in the hearts of the sort of people who think saving people from the scourge of war is not acceptable unless they are white.

8000 people will get Asylum, what could possibly go wrong? Well, a major atheist speaker and let’s face it! Pat Condell is a bigger deal in the Atheist Community than me with more people who subscribe to his views and who would defend him than vice versa. This major atheist viewpoint has come out and made a statement that is utterly false and with his history of misrepresentation of Islam as a monolith not to mention the push of Right Wing Talking Points ™ and insistence that the EDL’s website makes their ethos “not racist”. With this sort of History and action we quickly realise that this is just actual bigotry against Syrians.

This is Islamophobia. The Irriational and Incorrect Fear of a Non Existent Threat from Islam with heavy misrepresentation of the facts.

It is fear mongering.

And I am sure we are going to have people defending him over this. It’s not racist! It’s not bigotted!

Maybe, but it is an affront to human decency to mock the attempts of others to help some people and avoid the worst ravages of war.

Comments

  1. says

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  2. Steven says

    While excessive fear mongering like what Pat is doing is wrong, it is also wrong to deny that immigration from radically different cultures cause problems.

  3. Anthony K says

    While excessive fear mongering like what Pat is doing is wrong, it is also wrong to deny that immigration from radically different cultures cause problems.

    Yeah, but mostly ’cause problems’ is pretty vague. Is there anything that doesn’t ’cause problems’?

    For instance, it’s clearly wrong to deny that the English cause problems.

  4. says

    Avicenna, this is all-too familiar. Since early this century our politicians in Australia have made demonising asylum seekers a national pasttime, with our current (allegedly liberal) government going as far as to remove the Australian mainland from Australia’s immigration zone, and slogans like “STOP THE BOATS” becoming a conservative catch-cry (especially now as there’s an election on Saturday). There are people in virtual prisons offshore who’ve been interred literally for years, without charge, let alone conviction, as they ostensibly wait for asylum applications to be processed. The “boat people”, as they’re called, are not just demonised as “security risks” (they’re mostly Afghan, Sri Lankan, Iraqi – brown, therefore dangerous, right?), they’re called “queue jumpers” and “illegals” and even “economic migrants.”

    Both sides of politics have spent the years since conservative PM Howard joined Bush’s War On Brown People For Oil doing everything they can to ramp up xenophobia and win the bigot vote (even though they don’t do so overtly; it’s all dog-whistles like the pejoratives above). Howard’s own government forbade a ship that picked up survivors of a wrecked boat from landing here; he also whipped up a fear campaign, later known as the “children overboard” scandal, which alleged asylum seekers were throwing their own children into the sea in order to force Australian Naval vessels into rescuing them (it was, of course, bullshit but there were virtually no repercussions for Howard or his government for this blatant propaganda).

    All this in a country where we take in less than a percent of the world’s refugees (not to mention the fact that we are a nation of immigrants, even if until the 1950s they were mostly Anglo and more or less “economic migrants” anyway – like the parents of our current conservative opposition leader and most recent former PM). We’re an island, far away and hard to get to and the people who make it here in shitty boats from the M.East and other parts of Asia, often being completely scammed by smugglers, are far outweighed by the (usually white Euro) people who fly here on holiday and then overstay their VISAs. Despite that, we have both conservative and allegedly progressive sides of politics treating them all like criminals, illegal immigrants and welfare-cheats and spending amazing amounts of money setting up prison camps offshore in defiance of international law and humanitarian obligation – when they could be doing what they did in the 80s, when the “boat people” were mostly Vietnamese and Cambodian, and just treating them like people, assessing them quickly and settling them so they could find work and be “productive members of society”. It’s baffling that both our major parties would rather spend public money diverting resources to intercepting and imprisoning these desperate people instead of processing them in a reasonable timeframe and helping them find work – y’know, so they can sodding well pay those all-important taxes.

    Anyway, rant over.

    Pat would fit in well down here, what with both Old Parties doing their best to whip up fear and covertly pander to racism and bigotry – although he’d probably feel they were being a bit soft and recommend our Navy just turn them around and send them back to the Asian mainland. Or open fire. Y’know, because Security™!

    It’s a shame as I used to be a Pat Condell regular and enjoyed his thoroughly ruthless takedowns of religious idiocy…of course this all changed the more he ranted and raved about Muslims and immigration and started to resemble a BNP skinhead stooge. Sigh.

  5. see_the_galaxy says

    Pat was fresh and funny and original when he first started, but he’s just drank so much right wing hate koolaid that only the bitterness and bile are coming thru now.

  6. Walton says

    I’ve worked with asylum-seekers, and have been campaigning for immigrant and refugee rights for a while. I wish more people would recognize that the whole system of immigration controls is violent, racist and brutal, and discriminates against many of the most marginalized people most in need of sanctuary.

    I’ve been saying for years that Condell is a deeply racist and xenophobic person, and that his hatred of Islam is a paper-thin excuse to push a nasty anti-immigration agenda. I think this latest outburst makes it clear.

  7. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    Human is human.

    Well done Sweden.

    Look after those are fleeing the conflict, show them compassion and care and be good.

    Wish my nation ‘mong others would do the same.

    Cheers for this Avicenna.

  8. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    People are basically good.

    People are basically people. Can’t help being otherwise really.

    With that comes good – mostly – but also a lot of bad.

    Human nature is neither good nor bad but has potential for each of those

    In extremes and mostly in the middle.

    But then, hey, what do I know? I’m just a fallible human being.

    To err is human.
    There is no divine.

    So let us err when we inevitably err, on the side of being more compassionate rather than more cruel.

  9. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    @6. Hankstar [Mandrellian] – Vanilla Ilk-Shake :

    Spot on there.

    To quote from the Gruen nation’(?) pitch “ad” – “They’re not boatpeople -they’re people.”

    I think the demonisation of refugees legally seeking asylum in our nation under international laws we are supposed to abide by, is a national disgrace.

    Both major parties have been doing that lately. It has cost them my vote, well one of them (ALP) my vote, the other I’d never have voted for anyway. (Would’ve voted ALP if Gillard had still been PM tho’)

    I’m no fan of Islam as many on FTB will have noticed.

    But human beings is human beings and humans deserve to be treated with compassion and respect unless there';s one helluva reason not to do so.

    I’ll be voting Greens in our election this Saturday – and I’ll even be handing out how to vote cards for them. That’s one huge reason why – along with them being the only party taking Global Overheating and the need to do something about it seriously.

  10. Aneres says

    For what it’s worth, I discovered Pat Condell on youtube before I knew much about atheism; I was looking for ways to cope with an emotionally abusive parent. I’m a white american woman who still knows fairly little about Islam, and even I could tell he was saying stupid things. I unsubscribed a long time ago. Since then I’ve found your blog and associated others and been very pleased to hear more rational voices. Thank you!

  11. says

    Well, StevoR, if you’re in the electorate of Higgins (VIC) I may well see you Saturday morning.

    If not, try not to get too despondent over the new PM. He’s been carping from the opposition for six years so none of his ridiculous gaffes have had too much impact – once he’s in the Lodge, though, he’ll be under scrutiny 24/7 and he won’t be able to waffle his way through everything. With any luck it’ll be one term and we’ll be rid of him – or perhaps it’ll be half a term of policy failure and embarrassment before Mal Turnbull shanks him in the showers and brings a shred of respectability back to the conservatives.

  12. says

    Good on Sweden for showing concern for refugees. I mean, seriously, whether we agree with their religion or not is not really relevant here; the point is that they need a safe place to go and humanitarian assistance.

    This idea that simply an increase in the *number of self-identified Muslims* in a country (as opposed to, say, an increase in fundamentalism, or an increase in the percentage who believe in creationism, or who discriminate based on their religion, etc.) is dangerous and going to *ruin the country* is one of the things I find so blatantly discriminatory. It’s like when people freaked out that there were more babies in the UK named Muhammed.

    @Hankstar [Antipodean Antagony Aunt] (comment #6): Thanks for sharing information about Australia.

  13. Dan says

    “Would you like to know what WHOPPING amount of people have been given Asylum?

    8000.

    Not 2,000,000. A number 0.4% of what Pat Condell flogged.”

    You’re arguing with a position Pat Condell doesn’t hold.

    It’s pretty clear he means that, in theory, 2 million Syrian refugees could be allowed into Sweden. Not going to happen, but it does show how utterly reckless the Swedish government is that they would open the door to this. Just to put things into perspective, Sweden has a population of 9.5 million people. A theoretical introduction of 2 million more people (raised in a radically different culture no less) would be a disaster for the country. Swedish culture as you know it would be in danger. If you think this would be a non-issue, you’re naive. Borders were made for a reason.

    The rest of the article is just the usual leftist propaganda. You accuse him of racism, even though this is an issue of culture and religion rather than race.

    Furthermore I would argue that countries have a right to keep to themselves and are under no obligation to accept immigrants if it’s not in their best interest (especially in large numbers, from cultures that aren’t even remotely similar).

    You say: “The Irriational and Incorrect Fear of a Non Existent Threat from Islam with heavy misrepresentation of the facts.”

    Excuse me? So the institutionalized discrimination of non-believers as dhimmis, discrimination against women and other authoritarian aspects of Islam is “non existent”? This is almost always the case when Islam is a majority religion because mainstream Islam is inherently authoritarian.

    Finally about this whole “what’s wrong with compassion?” nonsense, again more leftist propaganda. Accept our leftist policies or you’re an evil bigot, which only reinforces the notion that leftists don’t really want to argue the points, they just want to dismiss your humanity if you disagree with them on any subject.

    I’ll tell you what’s wrong. You think it’s compassionate for Syrian refugees and that’s the end of it. You don’t think about whether or not it’s compassionate for Swedish people and culture and you don’t think about the long-term consequences of unrestricted mass immigration.

  14. Dan says

    “This idea that simply an increase in the *number of self-identified Muslims* in a country (as opposed to, say, an increase in fundamentalism, or an increase in the percentage who believe in creationism, or who discriminate based on their religion, etc.) is dangerous and going to *ruin the country* is one of the things I find so blatantly discriminatory.”

    I wouldn’t use the term fundamentalism, Islam (mainstream Sunni Islam that 80-85% of the Muslim world claims to believe in) is inherently authoritarian. There are plenty of manuals of Islamic jurisprudence that describe in great detail how society should be organized, it’s both religion and political ideology. So I would use the term religiosity instead. There are some extremely religious Christians who are not on the same level of insanity (or even close) as their extremely religious Muslim counter-parts.

    Plenty of Muslims fall in that category, polls after polls show that the radicals are not some “tiny 0.1% minority”, but come to half (and in some parts of the world over half) and Muslim majority countries tend to be the least free of all.

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