'Sickening' photo at Melbourne train station fuels outrage

Brooke Rolfe
·News Reporter
·3-min read

There has been an outpouring of outrage over a photo taken at a train station as thousands of footy fans were making their way home from Friday night's game at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

The photo, labelled as "sickening", was taken at Richmond train station about 10.30pm as revellers were heading home from the Collingwood and Western Bulldogs game.

The image, which according to The Australian was taken by a 23-year-old Jewish man, captured an older man seen wearing a hat with a Nazi swastika.

Uploading the disturbing photo to Facebook on Sunday, the Anti-Defamation Commission (ADC) opened the flood gates for social media uproar.

This man was spotted at Richmond station Friday night wearing a hat with a swastika on it. Source: Facebook
This man was spotted at Richmond station Friday night wearing a hat with a swastika on it. Source: Facebook

"I am moving from being really sad that such rot is still seen today or just really angry at the stupidity of it," one person wrote in a comment.

"This should be illegal FULL STOP," another said.

Others labelled the display as "unbelievable" and "sickening".

"Shame on you. If someone attacks you, it will be your fault. Burn that hat," someone else wrote.

In a statement released Sunday, ADC chairman Dvir Abramovich condemned the person wearing the offensive hat and renewed his call for Victorian lawmakers to ban public displays of Nazi ideology.

“If the state government does not put an end to this sickening and escalating crisis right now, Victoria may become known as the swastika state instead of the garden state,” he said in a statement, shared by The Australian, on Sunday.

“From the special spot in hell reserved for such monsters, Hitler must be smiling, knowing that his followers are continuing his destructive legacy.”

He implored lawmakers to take prompt action and not wait "until white supremacists organise a rally and march down Swanston Street waving Nazi flags".

"Our city is being invaded by these agents of hate, by these ‘Final Solutionists’ who are spitting in our faces and who have no fear of proudly exhibiting this evil emblem, which represents the extermination of millions, knowing full well that the law is on their side," he said.

Committee calls on government to outlaw Nazi symbols

Earlier this month, a Victorian parliamentary committee recommended making it a crime to display Nazi symbols such as the swastika.

The Legislative Assembly's Legal and Social Issues Committee inquiry into the state's anti-vilification protections also called for the laws to be extended to cover gender identity and sexual orientation, disability and HIV status.

The committee, made up of three Labor MPs, two Liberals and two independents, said there had been an increase in public displays of Nazi symbolism and a rise in racially motivated incidents during the coronavirus pandemic.

It said a criminal offence that prohibited the display of Nazi symbols "would allow Victoria Police to immediately remove Nazi symbols that are on deliberate display to vilify targeted communities."

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