I’m a car enthusiast and proud of it! But what I’m not proud of is the fact that non-car loving Australians have taken it upon themselves to label me a hoon.
Why? Is it because I drive a politically incorrect car; a modified V8 engine because I can, a large car because I enjoy leg-room and driver comfort, a bit of bling because I choose it, a good exhaust note because I like it? Or is it just that it gives buzz-box driving Joe Public something to be disgusted about when they see it sensationalised in the media.
I don’t have a problem with groups being labelled – as long as it’s not a derogatory tag. And whilst I can laugh at the hoon label; laugh at the poor, pathetic, unthinking Nigels of the world who obviously see myself and like-minded enthusiasts as a threat to their very existence; I believe that these people speak from an uninformed point of view, a place of fear fueled by sensational news reports and knee-jerk government reactions.
I feel these people use the term hoon in a derogatory, sometimes venomous way, demonstrating their absolute ignorance and their total lack of tolerance or understanding of anything outside of their microscopic, tunnel-visioned world.
So why do I think that hoon is a derogatory term. Basically, all reference definitions state that hoon is a derogatory term, but WikipediaÂť sums it up beautifully:
‘Hoon is a derogatory term used in Australia and New Zealand, to refer to anyone who engages in loutish, anti-social behaviour. In particular, it is used to refer to one who drives a car or boat in a manner which is anti-social by the standards of contemporary society, that is, fast, noisily and/or dangerously. Another slang term, revhead derived from “rev”, an alternate term for RPM is sometimes used in place of hoon. However, “revhead” can refer to any car enthusiast, while hoon is always pejorative. (NOTE: Pejorative is an adjective which means “having a disparaging, derogatory or belittling effect or force.”) “Anti-hoon laws”, while they generally concern road vehicles, sometimes also target anti-social behaviour in motor boats.’
‘The term “hoon” has obtained a semi-official use in Australia, with police and Governments referring to legislation targeting anti-social driving activity as “anti-hoon laws”. The term has even begun to appear in the titles of legislation, for example the Transport Legislation Amendment (Hoon Boating and Other Amendments) Act 2009 of the State of Victoria.’
But wait a minute… Referring to a minority group in a derogatory way, intolerance for a minority group, are these things considered to be discriminatory?
Check-out the definition of discrimination according to Anti Discrimination Australia:
The unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things, esp. on the grounds of race, age, or sex. Recognition and understanding of the difference between one thing and another
Forget the obvious, we all know you can’t slag-off about someone’s religion, race, colour and all that stuff, but it actually says “unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things”.
That’s us! We’re “different categories of people or things”Âť, and we all know that we’re subject to “unjust or prejudicial treatment”. Why? Because we choose to modify our cars.
And that opens up a whole new can of worms.
If the word Ëśhoon” is indeed prejudicial in the context discussed here, how can there be State and Federal laws discriminating against a minority group of enthusiasts who are hard-working, tax-paying Citizens in our great Australian multicultural democracy. How can the authorities seize your vehicle under laws which themselves contradict our anti-discrimination laws and our basic constitutional rights. And more importantly, how can the government pass legislation that actually uses a derogatory, slanderous and offensive word in its title?
How can there be laws in-place that allow police departments to have “anti-hoon” squads. How can the police be allowed to specifically target car events, or to target specific vehicles on the road based on the fact that they look like “hoon cars”.
Imagine if we were settlers from another country and faced this kind of prejudice… The bleeding-heart liberals would be taking claims of discrimination to the United Nations, go figure!
But no, we’re car enthusiasts. We’re those who allegedly drive on the dark side of legal, the politically incorrect hoons who terrorise the population in a mythical scenario fueled by a tunnel-visioned media. We’re those who have no rights when we exercise our right to modify our vehicle! We’re those who have less rights than those illegally entering our country by boat…
And my personal response… I’m about to do yet another rebuild on my modified car, and if this earns me the label of hoon, then so be it; go whinge to someone who gives a fuck!