Leader of the One Nation Party, Pauline Hanson in Australia, created a scene in the parliament on Thursday. She is known for her anti-migrant opinions but she got a little too carried away when she adorned a burka to raise the issue of the burka ban. Quite naturally, and to the relief to all those who believe in the freedom of expression and religions, many in the parliament were appalled as she took it off and pointed out that a piece of clothing was a threat to the national security of the country.

She addressed the Attorney General, George Brandis, during her speech and said that because she felt horrible and uncomfortable, and cut off from the rest of the world, the burka must be banned. Hanson is notorious for her views since her first term in the parliament during 1990s. At first she was against Asians migrating to Australia, and then she shifted her focus towards Muslims in the community. The debate was never about national security, it has always been about racism and must be called out as such.

The garment is not the security threat here, nor are Muslims. Extremist ideologies exist among Muslims yes, but not every Muslim must be punished for it, just as not every white person is punished for the kind of racism that this Australian parliamentarian and growing numbers of white fascists in American are exhibiting. Minority communities are already facing a lot of hate crimes for believing in a particular faith in the west. If that continues, they are bound to retaliate and that will create further problems.

Australia and the USA are two nations that have been built on immigrant labour and talent, and there is no economic data existing anywhere that shows a negative correlation between immigrant populations and national GDP. There is widespread academic consensus that the diversity immigrants bring always impact nations positively, especially in the west. It is in their national interest to embrace them, rather than reject them and generate social strife.