My email to Melburnians
I’m writing to you to express my abject disgust at what you have done today.
How dare you take to the streets – and to the gutter that is social media – and bring to a humiliating stop a perfectly legitimate operation with a name inexplicably taken from World War II involving a paramilitary entity blessed by at least one god and which at one stage had one of the greatest corporate logos known to humankind.
If Australian Border Force wanted to yell from the rooftops through a megaphone “Perpetrators of visa fraud: this is the Australian Border Force! We are coming to get you, you evil corruptors of civility and frayers of social fabric! We look a little bit like the police, but with a hint of yellow. And we’ll be coming when and where you least expect us. Specifically in the Melbourne central business district on Friday the 28th and Saturday the 29th of August at totally non-disclosed times during the evening!” I say more power to them. And they should have then been allowed to carry out this telegraphed activity without fear of persecution, ridicule or badly rhyming chants.
And as for this nonsense about intimidating people with threats about “speaking with any individuals we cross paths with”. Please! This is Australian Border Force not the Australian Border Moderate Potency or Australian Border Slight Duress. It is their job to “speak” with individuals they “cross paths” with. It is also their job to use disquieting euphemisms in press releases. This is what Border Forces do, you ingrates.
It is our job, as citizens of Melbourne, on the other hand, to do what the Herald-Sun tells us: namely, to be at the same time discrete, self-interested economic units with no regard for those outside our immediately family while at the same time always taking into careful account the commuting needs of fellow citizens.
You have no justification for outrage. Outrage is a privilege not an entitlement. It is like 1951 Grange Hermitage. Or dental care. You can’t just have it; you must earn the right to enjoy it. Others have earned that right – most of them are columnists at News Corp – but you have not. For that reason, civil disobedience is never the answer. Unless, of course, the Border Force infringes the rights of a News Corp columnist, in which case just go for your fucking life. Storm Parliament House. Drive a combine harvester through the Treasury Gardens. Get nude and defile the Town Hall while wearing a black mamba. It doesn’t matter that this is all State and local government property and the Force is a Federal entity – just go berserk.
But I have gone off on a tangent. Which is what you did, today, Melburnians. You have become obsessed with our alleyways and you strayed down one, metaphorically speaking. I ask you, never to do such a thing again. Why drift down Tattersall’s Lane when you can stay on the straight and narrow of Collins Street? We are, after all, a town with a reputation to uphold:
Please silence yourselves when you perceive an injustice to be taking place. Please restrain yourselves when you see power being exercised so vigorously that you feel it is being abused. Please look in a different direction when you see something that offends you.
I am very disappointed in you, my fellow Melburnians, and I don’t want to see this happen again.
Yours in paternal reproval,
…or choose one that takes your fancy from the list below:
My email to Yarra Trams
My email to Metro Trains
My email to Facebook
My email to Microsoft
My email to Coles
My (unsent) email to the Victorian Department of Transport
My email to Alan Jones
My email to Kyle Sandilands
My email to Gasp Jeans
My email to Jim Beam
My email to Ben Polis
My email to Hoo haa Bar
My email to Weis ice creams
My email to some tobacco companies
My email to Margaret Court
My email to KFC