Enterprise Compliance Today

Prejudice and Abuse in Youth Detention

Posted by Greg Carroll on Fri, Aug 05, 2016 @ 10:00 AM

This week I digress from my usual evangelism of all things GRC for a bit of self-indulgent introspection asking the rhetorical question: Why is our only tolerance the tolerance of prejudice?

“Ultimately, America's answer to the intolerant man is diversity.” — Robert Kennedy.



This is an Australian youth in an Australian government centre in 2016. 

Why is this treatment of a white youth more confronting than if he was a black youth.

This week’s footage of abuse at a youth detention centre in Northern Australia was disturbing and confronting. But was it more that it was directed against a white teenage boy, seen crying (vulnerable) immediately before one of the attacks?  Had it been a black or Muslim youth I don’t believe I would have been as affected.  Why?  Am I a bigot?  Obviously I don’t believe so, although many on the social left would certainly disagree. 

Unlike “enlightened” liberals I don’t believe good and evil are relative.  A person’s upbringing may be the cause of their actions but that makes their actions no less abhorrent to their victims. Child abusers were mostly likely abused themselves.  Child abuse is known to be wrong in all societies, so those who choose to do so, make a conscience decision to do wrong.  Conversely, a victim’s actions may avail themselves to abuse but again, that does not excuse the abuser.  Evil is evil.

Considering selling drugs at school or stealing a car will only result in a child offender receiving 40-120 hours community service, detention is reserved for serious crimes. The youths in detention are young adults, and if you have ever stood amongst a school football team you will understand that they aren’t defenceless.  But just as child abusers beget child abusers, so does institutionalised violence beget institutionalised offenders.  Those in the front line protection of society must be held accountable, but like most policies in today’s “enlightened” liberal society, this does little to fix the underlying problem.

That returns me to the question, that if evil is evil, then why would I be more upset at the treatment of a white youth than a black youth.  Before you judge me, be aware that with 80% of those in NT detention are indigenous, and this being institutionalised abuse, there would have been far more footage of abuse to black youths, but the leaked footage was of a white youth. I don’t believe myself to be a racist but I do accept I have been apathetic to plight of the indigenous social problems.  To quote Edmund Burke:

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing”.

Those involved will be disciplined and may face criminal charges but the underlying problem of how to rehabilitate entrenched antisocial behaviour remains. 

Saying “sorry” for the actions of our fore-father may make liberals feel good about themselves, but it does nothing to fix the plight of our indigenous population.  Fixing the existing indigenous social collapse (see Aboriginal communities are breaking down - Creative Spirits to understand the scale) must be a priority but it will require generational change during which time detention will continue to be a necessity.  And you will not produce social change, while you are generating institutionalise antisocial offenders.  So we need to address the issue of mandatory rehabilitation during detention, however politically incorrect, independent of the euphemisticly named Corrective Services personnel.

If Australia is looking for a major infrastructure project to improve productive and quality of life of all Australians, wouldn’t this be a better proposition than a fast rail like between Sydney and Melbourne.  The problem is it requires a lot more than just throwing money at it.



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