What are we to make of the recent Kalgoorlie riots, and what they suggest about contemporary race relations?
That the same anarchic, toxic and divisive rhetoric frequently espoused by the Black Lives Matter group in the United States, has found a home in Australia. Just as the past few years have shown us coverage from America, which have demonstrated an absence of consideration or care for white life, black on black murder, or state property, the same poisonous, virulent ideas have found their place in this country.
2 days ago, after a 14 year old (who happened to be Indigenous), stole a bike, the owner pursued the thief in his Ute. At some stage in the pursuit, the 55 year old man (whom the bike belonged to), allegedly attempted to knock the Aboriginal boy off the bike. Unfortunately, the Aboriginal boy is now dead, and the man is in custody facing charges of manslaughter. It is unquestionable, that the force used was disproportionate, and subsequently, the 55 year old man is facing potentially severe punishment for his actions.
However, in response to hearing news that the charges to be laid were manslaughter, the worst of the race- baiting activists came to the fore. Hundreds of furious protesters threatened staff and stormed the premises of the Kalgoorlie Magistrate’s court, causing the Magistrate to delay his deliberation on the case. The protesters then took the messages of ‘We Want Justice’ to the streets, albeit in an undignified, self- defeating way, as violent clashes quickly consumed the landscape, leaving 12 police officers injured, as well as 5 police cars and 1 business damaged.
It is crucial that this outrageous reaction, is treated as intolerable in its entirety. To have your own views on the justice system or for other issues, whether they be widely- held or less mainstream, is perfectly acceptable. But to take part in such fierce confrontations, through threatening court staff, causing fear to others, and waging war on the very glue of our civilization; the police, is anything but acceptable.
Rational thought, debate, and sensible dialogue must always remain the enviable avenue for change, as opposed to the unruly, chaotic circumstances that recently unraveled in Kalgoorlie.