When I heard Chief of Army, David Morrison, utter these words about incidents of sexual harassment in the Australian Armed Forces, I stood up and cheered. These are words that truly resonated with me and that we must all heed. It is time for everyone to take personal responsibility, not for the economic reasons being thrown at us, but for a far greater cause – that of humanity.
I listened to Anne Summers give the Human Rights and Social Justice lecture at Newcastle University in 2012 where she shone a light on the political bullying of our first female Prime Minister. We have all heard the clips, read the quotes, and seen the posters, but are you aware that, for many months, cartoonist and conman Larry Pickering bombarded not just Julia but every member of federal parliament and every senator on almost a daily basis with emails containing hate-filled commentary about Gillard, often accompanied by cartoons, many of which depicted her naked and wearing a huge strap-on dildo. Anne suggests he couldn’t envisage a Prime Minister without a penis, hence the strap-on.
Yet no Member of Parliament took steps to stop this or to denounce it in public. Pickering went on his merry way spreading his filth on facebook and even published this rant in response to Anne’s lecture.
“Even lesbians like Wong have turned their backs on Gillard.
If you wish to dry retch and peruse the sewage that pours from this “thing”’s noisy red orifice you will have to read today’s Fairfax Press or watch the ABC, because only the far Left will stomach her disgusting, vile drivel.
Understand this, Summers, it’s obnoxious vermin like you who emboldened Gillard to take the misogynist road.
It was you who applauded that nauseating crap and it is you who are responsible for her downfall. Live with it!
We real men adore real women and a thousand “thing”s like you will never drive a wedge between us.”
I shudder to think what Larry’s idea of a “real woman” is but thankfully I will never have to find out. (wedge firmly implanted and working on retaining wall and moat).
On Australia Day, Adam Goodes was awarded the honour of Australian of the Year. Everyone on social media had an opinion about the choice, some calling it tokenistic, some suggesting that he had bullied a young girl who had called him an ape. Having watched that incident, Adam’s response at the time, and then his defence of this young girl, I would suggest that he was trying to teach us all something. He is part of a campaign to end racism in this country called “Racism: it stops with me”.
Some of you may be aware that I am concerned about the direction this government is taking and have been critical of that in previous articles. In turn, I have also received criticism for some things I have written. Some of it has just been silly and easy to ignore, but some of it has been justified and I have learned from it. I do not want to spread rumours and gossip, I do not want to call people names, I do not want to hate. I have this grandiose idea that every single one of us has the capacity and the duty to make this world a better place.
For the victims of bullying, racism, sexual harassment, and abuse, I have decided to try, to the best of my imperfect ability, to stand up and say “It stops with me.”