The world continues to reel from the Friday terrorist attack targeting Muslims in New Zealand that left 49 people dead, and as some like Australian Senator Fraser Anning make their opposition to the victims loud and clear, others have had enough. At a press conference this Saturday, an at this point unnamed protester smashed an egg into Anning’s head while holding up a phone they were presumably using to record the moment.
Anning responded by turning around and hitting the protester in the side of the head, an effort he would have kept on with had security not restrained him. According to local media, the teenage perpetrator was “held down and questioned by officials before being led away by police” and “later released without charge pending further investigations.” The event at which Anning was speaking was marked by other scuffles between opponents and supporters, including Anning shills who helped tackle the egg-smashing teen to the ground and put him in a “tight headlock,” cursing him out in the process.
Watch the moment:
Trying to get into a fist fight with a protester, even if they got physical first, isn’t exactly a look you’d hope for coming from a leader who’s supposed to be above the fray, but Anning has long proven he’s anything but that.
After the violence in New Zealand, Anning bluntly blamed Muslim immigration for the attacks, even utilizing a Bible verse to support his double standard criticizing essentially nonexistent global Muslim violence while implicitly supporting attackers like the New Zealand shooter, who he indicated were just acting out of “fear” at the influx of “Muslim fanatics.” Anning attracted wide scrutiny for his remarks, but he has not shown any apparent indication of remorse for falsely conflating the global Muslim community and violence like that perpetrated this past Friday in New Zealand by an Aussie who no doubt supports him.
The issues go on from there. Not too long ago, he attracted scrutiny for using government money to attend a rally of far-right radicals that even included some Nazi imagery, saying he was there to protest violence from “African gangs.”
In his first speech as a Senator after getting seated in 2017, Anning went so far as to call for a “final solution” to immigration, although he played dumb when outrage ensued over him reviving Nazi terminology.
The issue mirrors one that Americans face, since President Donald Trump has routinely engaged in harsh anti-Muslim rhetoric, no matter what niceties he’s offered in the time since the New Zealand attack. He has claimed that “Islam hates us” and sought to ban Muslims from travel to the United States on no tangible basis other than their identity, with limited success.
More broadly, to say that he’s widely criticized immigration and immigrants would be an understatement. In the context of generally Muslim immigration, he told a British newspaper last year:
‘Allowing the immigration to take place in Europe is a shame… I think allowing millions and millions of people to come into Europe is very, very sad.’
Much more recently, he has stuck to calling undocumented immigration over the southern U.S. border an “invasion” — which is literally the same term the New Zealand shooter used in his manifesto to justify claims of “white genocide.”
Featured Image via screenshot from the video