No respect.

October 9, 2012

I just got back from my chaperoning days in Japan on Thursday and I’ve fallen in love. What an amazing and fascinating country. Love, love, love.

The people. The culture. The respect.

Everywhere we went, even at the local 7-Eleven, we received kindness and courtesy – always bowing. It was so lovely and endearing.

Wi-Fi connection was missing from most of the hotels we stayed at (in our rooms), so I actually enjoyed the luxury of not knowing about what was going on in the world. I took a ‘time-out’ and immersed myself in actual quiet, ‘me’ time – as I rested my weary bones.

It was wonderful.

Then I came home. Back to reality with a swift slap. I learned about Alan Jones and his comment about our Prime Minister, Julia Gillard. I’ve written about Alan Jones before, speaking about our women leaders ‘destroying the joint’. To inform all you overseas readers, this time Alan Jones said that our Prime Minister’s father (who had died a few weeks earlier) “died of shame” due to her lies.

I was gobsmacked.

I simply could not fathom the cruelty of such a comment.

And to be honest, I can’t understand the venom that is generally felt towards Ms Gillard by everyday Australians. I look around and see a nation that is pretty comfortable in its rich lifestyle – ie food, shelter, beds, clothes (at the very least) – compared to many around the world…most of the world, actually.

And yet our media subjects us to a bombardment of whingers. It seems to have become Australia’s mantra, to complain about having to pay more for the necessities – necessities that mean more digging of our planet; use of water from dams, but not recycled water (god forbid) – but who don’t think twice about forking out hundreds on iPhones, computers, the latest label anything, air-conditioners…

Seems absurd – when most of the world is battling in EVERY way – to survive.

But I digress.

What I’m seeing is Australia’s media machine being given permission to treat our Prime Minister with misogynistic contempt.

I CLEARLY remember John Howard, the Liberal Prime Minister, telling his people that there would not be a GST (Goods and Services Tax) under his government. Not only did HE lie, we ended up paying – and still do – TEN percent on everything we buy.

Everything. Regardless of income. That’s massive and yet…

Where was the lynch mob then?

If you ever thought our Prime Minister was a liar and fed off the teat of the spin campaign, read this article: Her Rights at Work (R-rated version). Anne Summers AO Ph.D, gives a frank lecture predominantly about Ms Gillard’s treatment since becoming the leader of Australia, due to her gender.

“But what is NOT normal is the way in which the prime minister is attacked, vilified or demeaned in ways that are specifically related to her sex (or, if you like, her gender).  Calling her a “liar” might not be gender-specific, although as I have pointed out, it was not a term used against back-flipping male prime ministers.

There are countless examples, however, where the prime minister is attacked, vilified or demeaned in ways that do specifically relate to her sex and I propose to devote the rest of this lecture to describing, categorizing and exploring the implications of them.”

This is a photo of our Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott, in front of signs about Julia Gillard. He’s good mates with Alan Jones, too.

All of this reeks of the scene I saw in the documentary, Miss Representation, when Hilary Clinton was running against Barak Obama for the Democrats Leadership. Men were shouting, “IRON MY SHIRT! IRON MY SHIRT!” whilst holding placards with the same slogan, as she tried to speak.

*Shaking head*

But today – today there’s a new buzz in the air.

Alan Jones is being held accountable for his blatant misogynistic attitude towards our Prime Minister and it’s wonderful. The funny thing is that he seems to be the type of man who can dish it out, but can’t seem to take it.

What a fine specimen he is.

In the article Decent Australia says enough is enough, we are lapping up the giddy feeling of rising up and having a collective voice.

Question #101: Doesn’t this make you feel empowered? Like you can take a stand and say “Enough” at all the wrongs of the world?

I do.

But it has to be done with calm. ‘When emotion goes up; Intelligence goes down’. No insults. No threats. Just hit ’em where it hurts.


Deep Breath.


The following information comes from The Sydney Morning Herald (September 2 – Fathers’ Day):

“Women must work an extra 64 days each year to earn the same as their male colleagues, new figures show. The pay gap has also widened in the past year, prompting calls from the trade union movement for legislative change…

…On average, men earn 17.5 per cent more than women in comparable jobs.”

Come ON…

This information appeared next to an article about Alan Jones’ comment:

Alan Jones let rip a tirade on 2GB against Prime Minister Julia Gillard. This time it was about her promise to help get more women in the Pacific into parliament and other decision-making positions. Gillard argued raising the status of women was the best way to reduce the appalling domestic violence statistics in the region.

Jones didn’t agree. He claimed that, “Women are destroying the joint – Christine Nixon in Melbourne, Clover Moore here. Honestly.”

He then said, “There’s no chaff bag big enough for these people.” He has also previously said our Prime Minister should be put in one and thrown out to sea.

Such malice – and for what?

Let me just say – GOOD ON YOU, JULIA! There is nothing wrong with that wonderful vision for our sisters in the Pacific.

How interesting that a man like Alan Jones – who has the luxury to spread his poison over the airways, should find offense to this. How exactly is HIS life affected by this promise?

Does Alan Jones really give a rat’s bum about any of us? Obviously not, ESPECIALLY if you’re a woman…Oh, unless you listen to his show.

Federal Attorney-General Nicola Roxon responded by branding the Jones comment “good old fashioned sexism”.

Well it is.

But as the film Miss Representation pointed out – why would girls want to become a voice in our governments, when they are treated with SUCH contempt?

Fortunately, Jane Caro (awesome activist who wrote the above article) has started a small stir by creating the hashtag #destroyingthejoint – there’s also a FB site of the same name, although I’m not sure who started that one.

Who cares. It’s a chance to say that it’s simply NOT. ON.

More women in government – equal representation! Equal pay!

But as I’ve always said, it starts with us because men vote for men and women predominantly vote for men too. That’s not to say just vote any ol’ gal in – but our mindset has some changing to do.

You may not like Julia Gillard, but this promise is a wonderful one and we should all acknowledge it – not just oppose everything.

Deep Breath.


PS I posted this on my Questions for Women Facebook Page but it wouldn’t hurt to put it here too. There is a petition with asking for Alan Jones to apologise for his mysoginist and sexist comments.

Click here and have your voice heard!