Daily Archives: 7 December 2007

Johnny Howard’s Smoking Ceremony

Anyone who has even a mild interest in politics and indigenous affairs, are probably aware that John Howard (ex Australian PM, remember him?) was not very high on most indigenous people’s list of popular people.

A small but enthusiastic crowd held a smoking ceremony to observe John Howard’s “political funeral”. Attached are some photos, with commentary, from the event. John Howard’s Smoking Ceremony

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East West 101

A new TV show with an obviously atheist character. Is this good or bad?

Watched this new TV series last night (East West 101, SBS, 8:30pm Thursdays) which is a fairly formulaic cop show, situated in Sydney, with good cop, bad cop and female boss. What makes this show slighlty different is that one of the cops is a muslim. Last nights episode had overtones of racial intolerance with a theme of muslims being characterised as terrorists, when they are just ordinary people caught in a difficult situation.

OK onto the athiest bit, at one stage of the show the muslim cop (Detective Zane Malik) says something about god, the other cop (Detective Sgt Ray Crowley) says something along the lines of “there’s nothing there, mate” (If anyone happened to record this last night, I’d love a transcript of this section as my hopeless memory is not doing this interplay justice). Suffice to say it was quite obvious that Ray doesn’t believe in god. (Though from the characterisation, Ray might just be denying god or be angry at god?)

The wife and I made a comment about the quite obvious atheist overtones of that section of the show. However, on further reflection, I was disappointed that the character of Ray, whilst being an atheist, is portayed as being an angry and troubled person.

The religious character is the good guy and the atheist character is the bad guy.

Whilst this is fitting in the context of this TV show, us atheists could get paranoid at depictions like this.

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