Jews Urge New South Wales Government to Ban the Swastika
The NSW government will seek advice on banning the public display of National Socialist symbols following another Jewish supremacist outrage last weekend.
The flag, seen in the backyard of a home in inner-city Newtown, prompted renewed hysteria to outlaw National Socialist symbols.
NSW Parliamentary "Friends of Israel" deputy chair Walt Secord on Saturday publicly urged the government to look into a ban. Vaucluse MP Gabrielle Upton, a member of the government, wrote to Attorney-General Mark Speakman on Monday asking he "identify the best ways the government can end this totally offensive and deplorable use of the Nazi flag".
"I have requested advice from the Department of Communities and Justice about this matter," he told The AJN.
"These symbols of hatred and antisemitism are unacceptable anywhere in our community. They are deeply offensive and capable of traumatising survivors of genocide and their loved ones. The small but disgraceful minority who display these images insult the memory of the millions of victims of the Holocaust and those who died defending the world from this hatred."
"I want a fast-track examination by the Attorney-General with recommendations on a way forward. In the spirit of bipartisanship, we could have laws on the books before the end of the year – if we work together on this important matter," he said.
"Flying a Nazi flag should be banned in NSW."
NSW Jewish Board of Deputies president Lesli Berger said it was "a very significant step forward".
"To flaunt the emblem in today’s Australia is a sickening promotion of what the Nazis stood for, and occurring as it did on the eve of Yom Hashoah added to the hurt and offensiveness," he said.
"There is an imperative to explore the possibility of outlawing the promotion of this symbol, and the Board of Deputies will support such a pursuit."
NSW’s only Jewish MP, Ron Hoenig, said the swastika is an affront "not just to survivors of Nazism and the Second World War, but to our very humanity".
The Jewish supremacist Anti-Defamation Commission's chairman Dvir Abramovich, who has been campaigning for the ban of free speech and free expression for two years, said, "Now is the time to act and to address the key problem which is that the flying of the Nazi flag in NSW and in other states is still not against the law. This latest incident is another opportunity for our governments not to pass the ball, not to give a free pass to homegrown racists and bigots who are nourished by inaction, but to do the right thing."