"Far right nationalists, anti-vaxxers, libertarians and conspiracy theorists
have come together over COVID, and capitalised on the anger and uncertainty
simmering in some sections of the community.
They appear to have found fertile ground particularly among men who feel
alienated, fearful about their employment and who spend a lot of time at home
scrolling social media and encrypted messaging apps.
It’s important to see what’s occurring with these protests as part of a
continuum rather than a series of unrelated incidents. This week’s protests are
related to anti-lockdown protests held in 2020, and earlier this year.
It was at first limited to the conspiracy theorist and anti-vaxxer crowd. Some
were just upset by lockdowns but most of the planning conversation online was
being led by anti-vaxxers and QAnon activists.
These movements thrive on anxiety, anger, a sense of alienation, a distrust in
government and institutions. It’s really no coincidence this is occurring most
vigorously in Melbourne given what this city has been through with lockdowns.
It has really built momentum over the last year and, more recently, been
infiltrated by far right groups."
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics
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