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British people attach vinegar, when eating Fis...

Image by petitshoo via Flickr

As we head towards refugee Sunday, Eureka Street offers some worthy material for reflection, e.g. Improving the refugee debate – Eureka Street.

It well makes the point that multiculturalism, the so called bête noir of our times is really of little account. This reflects a lunch-time conversation from which I have just emerged, where a bunch of us good-solid-British-heritage-stocked fourth-and-fifth generationists were comparing our ancestries and remarking how much more mottled our lines were than we realised. The makeup of this country has been thus varied for the last 200 years. Certainly, the ruling class were decidedly British in demeanour if not ethnicity, but those they ruled  reveal a variety of cultural backgrounds. And in a land where Jack/Jill is as good as his/her master, the program is set for distinctions to either fade or be mutually celebrated. The politically manufactured zeitgeist of fear cannot and should not prevail given our collective story. But alas it has and it does but it need not. Just read this inspiring article in the same issue of Eureka street.

So one hopes that law interpreted by the High Court of Australia, as in the Malaysia case now awaiting determination, and the reasoned voices from the middle ground that are now being given some airplay, might begin to turn, or at least soften, the political perception of public opinion. Hope springs eternal!

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