Sydney has had terrorism rear it’s ugly face today and along with the apparently lone wolf terrorist holding hostages in the CBD, there have been the unsurprising calls to end multiculturalism in Australia and calls to deport Muslims. Thankfully the most radical anti-Muslim sentiments I saw on twitter today in response to my tweets about the situation were from outside Australia. One “gentleman” had a twitter page filled with paranoia and anti-muslim rantings, calls for Obama to be impeached and a lot of scary stuff.
I had concerns that the racist white community here in Australia would be vocal and harass the Muslim community and apparently I wasn’t the only one. A twitter hashtag of #Illridewithyou has taken hold and is trending across the whole country showing Australians have a lot more empathy than I was expecting to see. The premise is that Muslims can organise to catch public transport to work as usual and be accompanied by a Caucasian or non-Muslim Aussie. There is a little cynicism about the trend but I think it’s fantastic even if it just keeps people a little more calm.
The siege in the CBD is now in it’s 12th hour and the lights in the cafe are now all out with an unknown number of hostages still inside. The police are taking this nice and slowly trying to end it with the best possible result.