• Tsukuba, Ibaraki

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Amit Chaturvedi’s Feb. 26 letter,”Japanese culture more influential” — which describes Australian society as coming “directly from hell” — was grossly offensive and perhaps better suited to another forum. Such hate-filled language could at best only describe an atypical personal experience. My own 20 years in Australia were peaceful and pleasant.

Chaturvedi’s perception is that crime in Australia is “indeed very high.” This does not fit with my much longer experience in Australia. My own perception is that Australia is much less corrupt and cleaner in governance than Japan. I suggest that Chaturvedi’s conclusions could be taken more seriously if he was prepared to put his own country under the spotlight rather than using one where he has spent all of three months.

Australia’s belief that there is some strength to be found in diversity may not be accurate. It means, for instance, tolerating nasty voices like Chaturvedi’s from time to time. At least this is a more generous and optimistic way of thinking than xenophobia, which is the alternative.

david mcilwain

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