Today I feel a little happier than I have been for a long time. People are listening and are now acting. It’s not for lack of trying on my part, I can assure you.
To see overwhelming support for the words (in the JCCV media release of 06 May 2010 – see below):
“This council … calls for abstention from any public or private conduct that incites hatred against, serious contempt for, revulsion, vilification or severe ridicule of, another person or group on the ground of their identity (including race, religion, colour, disability, sexual orientation, gender and national origin) or views of that other person or group.”
is something I never imagined I would see.
Let this be an example for other communities around Victoria, Australia and the world. There is no room for hate or intolerance in our society.
Homosexual, bisexual and transgender women and men are people like everyone else and have the same needs and desires as everyone else. We need unconditional love and acceptance, not intolerance, hate and exclusion.
There is plenty more work that needs to be done in this area, but this is a good start.
06 May 2010
At the Jewish Community Council of Victoria plenum held on 3 May 2010, delegates overwhelmingly voted for the following amendment to the JCCV’s policy platform:
3.7.1 ACKNOWLEDGES the distinctive character of the Victorian Jewish community as part of the Jewish people worldwide, with a shared history, culture and religious tradition.
3.7.2 RECOGNISES that irrespective of the common traits that bind us as a community, Victorian Jewry is also diverse and pluralistic and that this is reflected in different, often strongly held views, on a range of issues affecting the Jewish and larger communities.
3.7.3 CALLS FOR respect for any such differences, while affirming that disagreement is only permissible in ways that do not vilify other persons or their views.
3.7.4 CALLS FOR abstention from any public or private conduct that incites hatred against, serious contempt for, revulsion, vilification or severe ridicule of, another person or group on the ground of their identity (including race, religion, colour, disability, sexual orientation, gender and national origin) or views of that other person or group.
JCCV President John Searle noted that the JCCV’s policy platform was a living document, continually updated to reflect the views of its affiliates. He observed that under his presidency the JCCV had demonstrated an ongoing and increasing opposition to vilification in all its manifestations.
He stated that “it is important to realise that this particular policy is not intended to prohibit robust debate or to demand acceptance of all opinions or lifestyles. What it does do, however, is set parameters for the conduct of discussion of such matters, asking for respect for difference. Quite simply it’s about playing the ball, not the person.”
Searle concluded, “While our policies are not binding, they are nonetheless a strong statement of principle and provide guidance to and educate those persons considering a range of issues that affect our community.”
Please address any queries to Geoffrey Zygier at 9272 5566