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Like It or Leave It

Claim:   Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard made a speech encouraging Muslims to leave Australia.

INCORRECTLY ATTRIBUTED

Example:   [Collected via e-mail, January 2013]

Australia says NO -- This will be the second Time Julia Gillard has done this!

She sure isn't backing down on her hard line stance and one has to appreciate her belief in the rights of her native countrymen.

A breath of fresh air to see someone lead.? Australian Prime Minister does it again!!

The whole world needs a leader like this!

Prime Minister Julia Gillard - Australia

Muslims who want to live under Islamic Sharia law were told on Wednesday to get out of Australia, as the government targeted radicals in a bid to head off potential terror attacks.

Separately, Gillard angered some Australian Muslims on Wednesday by saying she supported spy agencies monitoring the nation's mosques.

Quote: 'IMMIGRANTS, NOT AUSTRALIANS, MUST ADAPT... Take It Or Leave It. I am tired of this nation worrying about whether we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on Bali , we have experienced a surge in patriotism by the majority of Australians.'

'This culture has been developed over two centuries of struggles, trials and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom.'

'We speak mainly ENGLISH, not Spanish, Lebanese,

Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, or any other language. Therefore, if you wish to become part of our society, learn the language!'

'Most Australians believe in God. This is not some Christian, right wing, political push, but a fact, because Christian men and women, on Christian principles, founded this nation, and this is clearly documented. It is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture.'

'We will accept your beliefs, and will not question why. All we ask is that you accept ours, and live in harmony and peaceful enjoyment with us.'

'This is OUR COUNTRY, OUR LAND, and OUR LIFESTYLE, and we will allow you every opportunity to enjoy all this. But once you are done complaining, whining, and griping about Our Flag, Our Pledge, Our Christian beliefs, or Our Way of Life, I highly encourage you take advantage of one other great Australian freedom, 'THE RIGHT TO LEAVE'.'

'If you aren't happy here then LEAVE. We didn't force you to come here. You asked to be here. So accept the country YOU accepted.'
 

Origins:   This item is a hybrid which combines an introductory reference to statements made by Australian politicians about Muslims following the July 2005 London Tube bombings with an editorial about immigrants written by a U.S. Air Force veteran following the September 2001 attacks on the U.S., attributing the entire result to current Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard. In fact, none of the statements quoted in the above example was actually made by Prime Minister Gillard.

The first several paragraphs in the example, which include the claim that "Muslims who want to live under Islamic Sharia law were told to get out of Australia," are a reference to political debate over the appropriate response to domestic terrorism concerns in Australia in the aftermath of the July 2005 London Tube bombings. That debate took place when John Howard, not Julia Gillard, was prime minister of that country.

Everything in the example from the paragraph beginning with the word 'Quote:' onwards is an Australianized version of text lifted from an opinion piece written in 2001 by a U.S. Air Force veteran shortly afer the 9/11 attacks on America and had nothing whatsoever to do with Australia or Julia Gillard. The original piece, penned by Barry Loudermilk, read as follows:
At a high school in Oklahoma, school officials remove “God Bless America” signs from schools in fear that someone might be offended.

At a Long Island, New York television station, management orders flags removed from the newsroom, and red, white, and blue ribbons removed from the lapels of reporters. Why? Management did not want to appear biased, and felt that our nation’s flag might give the appearance that “they lean one way or another.”

Officials in a California city ban U.S. flags from being displayed on city fire trucks because they didn’t want to offend anyone in the community.

In an “act of tolerance,” the head of the public library at a Florida university ordered all “Proud To Be an American” signs removed so as to not offend international students.

I, for one, am quite disturbed by these actions of so-called “American citizens”; and I am tired of this nation worrying about whether or not we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on September 11th, we have experienced a surge of patriotism by the majority of Americans. However, the dust from the attacks had barely settled in New York and Washington, DC when the “politically correct” crowd began complaining about the possibility that our patriotism was offending others. I am not against immigration, nor do I hold a grudge against anyone who is seeking a better life by coming to America. In fact, our country’s population is almost entirely comprised of descendants of immigrants; however, there are a few things that those who have recently come to our country, and apparently some native-born Americans, need to understand.

First of all, it is not our responsibility to continually try not to offend you in any way. This idea of America being a multi-cultural community has served only to dilute our sovereignty and our national identity. As Americans, we have our own culture, our own society, our
own language, and our own lifestyle. This culture, called the “American Way” has been developed over centuries of struggles, trials, and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom. Our forefathers fought, bled, and died at places such as Bunker Hill, Antietam, San Juan Hill, Iwo Jima, Normandy, Korea, Vietnam, and the Persian Gulf, for our way of life. We speak English, not Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, or any other language. Therefore, if you wish to become part of our society, learn our language!

“In God We Trust” is our national motto. This is not some off-the-wall, Christian, right wing, political slogan. It is our national motto. It is engraved in stone in the House of Representatives in our Capitol, and it is printed on our currency. We adopted this motto because Christian men and women, on Christian principles, founded this nation; and this is clearly documented throughout our history. If it is appropriate for our motto to be inscribed in the halls of our highest level of government, then it is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools.

God is in our pledge, our National Anthem, nearly every patriotic song, and in our founding documents. We honor His birth, death, and resurrection as holidays, and we turn to Him in prayer in times of crisis. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture, and we are proud to have Him.

We are proud of our heritage and those who have so honorably defended our freedoms. We celebrate Independence Day, Memorial Day, Veterans Day, and Flag Day. We have parades, picnics, and barbecues where we proudly wave our flag. As an American, I have the right to wave my flag, sing my national anthem, quote my national motto, and cite my pledge whenever and wherever I choose. If the Stars and Stripes offend you, or you don’t like Uncle Sam, then you should seriously consider a move to another part of this planet.

The American culture is our way of life, our heritage, and we are proud of it. We are happy with our culture and have no desire to change, and we really don’t care how you did things where you came from. We are Americans. Like it or not, this is our country, our land, and our lifestyle.

Our First Amendment gives every citizen the right to express his opinion about our government, culture, or society, and we will allow you every opportunity to do so. But once you are done complaining, whining, and griping about our flag, our pledge, our national motto, or our way of life, I highly encourage you to take advantage of one other great American freedom, the right to leave!
Barry Loudermilk's piece was originally published in his local Georgia newspaper, the Bartow Trader. As Christian Nelson of VietNow National Magazine (which also printed Loudermilk's piece) wrote of its origins:
After some Internet sleuthing, I caught up with Loudermilk one evening and asked what had brought him to the point of writing the article. "I've written a few articles in the past, and I'd been seeing on the news all these organizations wanting to remove patriotic symbols, and talking about 'offending' people, and it got me upset. So one night I went home and wrote down what I was thinking. Later, I e-mailed the piece to a few friends, and while I was at it, I sent it to the local newspaper, The Bartow Trader, which had published some of my pieces in the past, and they decided to run it."

Loudermilk thought that was it. He’d gotten his points across to a few friends, and knew his views were in the local newspaper, and that was enough for him. But it wasn’t over quite yet. About two weeks later, he suddenly started getting hundreds of encouraging e-mails and phone calls from people all around the country saying how much they liked what he had said.
Last updated:   4 January 2013

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Sources:

    Bessonette, Colin.   "Q & A."
    The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.   5 March 2002.

    Branom, Mike.   "Muslim Woman Cannot Wear Veil in Driver's License Photo."
    The Associated Press.   6 June 2003.

    Gutierrez, Pero Ruz.   "State: Veiled Muslim Woman 'Hypersensitive.'"
    Orlando Sentinel.   26 June 2002

    Loudermilk, Barry.   "This Is America. Like It or Leave It."
    VietNow National Magazine.

    Nelson, Christian.   "Who Is Barry Loudermilk, Anyway?"
    VietNow National Magazine.