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Tag: The white left

On the Indignance of the White Left

For over a month I have been ensconced in the rapidly evolving campaign attacking the supply chains that prop up the Australian system of mandatory detention. This has largely been through playing a supporting role in the blog, Cross Border Operational Matters in the context of which I am learning from long time activists from the Melbourne based Beyond Borders group, especially the burgeoning Women’s Caucus, as well as the unequalled intellectual and organising capacities of Angela Mitropoulos whose work I read many moons before ever dreaming about finding myself in this colonial outpost of the Southern Hemisphere. Recently, I have been particularly thankful for the interventions of Liz Thompson, long time open borders activist and Manus Island whistle blower. Apart from her crucial interview on the SBS Dateline show last week, her recent article in which she explains why she chose not to address the Refugee Action Coalition rally in Melbourne last Saturday was a vital intervention into the politics of the stagnated refugee movement such as it is in Australia.

Liz argued that

I have become increasingly concerned about the self-promoting, NGO-proliferating arm of the “refugee movement”, the lack of self-reflection on the amount of space taken up by white people saying “not in my name”. These rallies serve to reinforce and reorganise a white refugee movement that speaks on behalf of others.

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Alana Lentin