Thursday, March 22, 2007

James Allan and the Absurdity of Multiculturalism

James Allan, a professor of law at the University of Queensland, does a great job at pointing out some of the philosophical absurdities of Multiculturalism as a political philosophy.

Cultural relativism, the belief that there is no moral right and wrong that is applicable across cultural boundaries, is one such tenant of the Multiculturalist thesis. But common sense morality points out that this is absurd. We all know that female genital circumcision, silencing freedom of speech and dictatorships are wrong, regardless of what country or culture it occurs in.

And it is not just straight out moral rules that ought not to be disobeyed from culture to culture, Allan points out that there are practical consequences to wrong behaviour that will have bad effects cross-culturally:

If one culture emphasises education while another promotes lying on the beach, we can most certainly say which will be the wealthier culture and the one that will discover antibiotics and build jet aircraft.

This is a man with his finger on the pulse. The article is worth checking out. And multiculturalism is well worth jettisoning as a policy in Australia. It promotes tribalism and the inevidability of tribal conflict as we have already seen at Cronulla and other places.


Dee said...

That whole multiculturalist essential premise, that there is nothing moral only that which is passed down through cultures themselves, is just moral relativism in another guise. It's an evil and insidious move to break down as irrelevant all the moral cornerstones to the societies of the West, which are, in essence, the Judeo-Christian cornerstones of our society.

Damien Spillane said...


What I would say though, is that Multiculturalism is the brainchild of Postmodernism. PoMo says that there are no absolute moral laws or truth, and this thesis springs from atheistic naturalism. In a naturalistic world where there is only matter in motion and no way that the world 'ought' to be, then there can me no metaphysical grounding for what is right and wrong. There is no ultimate way the universe ought to be. Chance rules. Hence naturalism gives way to PoMo. This was anticipated by Friedrich Nietzsche who made the observation that atheism leads to no ultimate truth or morals, so all that is left is different perspectives and power plays.

Dee said...

Also if the earth burst into existence through a random natural occurrence and we all evolved through a set of random mutations, then our very existence is completely random and meaningless, therefore morals are merely human behaviors which have developed in response to a particular environment and to say that our morals are better than another cultures is to be arrogant. It's only when man points to God as the source of moral behavior that the focus goes from a sense of moral superiority to a trust in the moral superiority of another Being.