Australian Government Links Alternative Music to Terrorism. Wait–What?

What kind of batshit crazy world are they living in Down Under? A new anti-radicalization program launched by the Australian federal government has linked alternative music.

You read that right: the Australian Feds believe that alt-rock is one of the things that can lead young people to doing weird, radical, law-breaking things. This kit was develop for teachers so they could spot any students turning into activists, radicals and extremists. It also gives tips on how they should respond if they encounter such a, er, crisis. Tom points us to this on Australian network ABC:

The Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Terrorism Michael Keenan launched the Radicalisation Awareness Kit in the form of a 32-page booklet on Monday.

Through a series of examples and fictitious case studies, the booklet aims to illustrate the circumstances which can lead young people to become radicalised.

But one surprising example cites the power of the alternative music scene and environmental activism in the radicalisation process.

The case study in the ‘Violent Extremism’ section tells the story of a girl called ‘Karen’ who becomes involved in the “alternative music scene, student politics and left-wing activism” when she leaves home.

‘Karen’ ends up sabotaging logging machinery and being arrested “on numerous occasions” while becoming “totally cut off from her family”.

Right. So as the result of listening to anything from Florence + The Machine to Rise Against, a young women into an environment activist with terrorist tendencies? Could Black Flag lead to al-Qaeda? Might Rage Against the Machine sent some poor child spinning into the hands of ISIL? According to these people, yes.

To the credit of teachers and environmentalists across Oz, they’re calling “bullshit” on this one. School reconvenes in Australia in a couple of weeks, which gives everyone a little time to evaluate this helpful teaching aid.

Read the whole article here.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.