A Tiny Bright Spot

This has been a pretty damn depressing election campaign for all of us, I think. It’s been filled with bigotry and gossip about ALP internal politics, and there’s been very little analysis of policy or what either major party is really offering to voters. But today, at least, I saw something that made me happy.

Unfortunately, the story starts with yet another stunning display of bigotry: an SMH article reports on the homophobic tweets of QLD senate candidate Wendy Francis. Definite trigger warning there — this woman is against marriage equality because she believes that allowing children to be parented by same-sex couples is a form of abuse.

What then, you may ask, is this bright spot I speak of? Why, it’s the comments in response to this article. Now, usually I avoid comment threads on MSM sites — usually they swing conservative, and privilege the bigots. But — not on this issue. Yes, there are a few people in there ranting on about their homophobic interpretations of the Bible, and we have our old favourites, such as “BUT TWO PEOPLE OF THE SAME SEX CAN’T HAVE CHILDREN NATURALLY”. Overall though, these arguments are being called out for what they are — homophobic drivel that has no basis in fact or rational thought.

It is a shame that the politicians in both major parties haven’t caught onto this yet — but the electorate is largely pro-marriage equality. I know that an SMH comment thread is hardly reliable data, (so here is a poll that shows the same), but it’s certainly heartening to see that so many Australians are willing to speak out against this sort of homophobia — particularly when these sorts of comment threads so often swing in the direction of bigotry.

Categories: culture wars, media

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6 replies

  1. Marriage equality is a perfect example of how the main stream parties seem so orthogonal to the electorate. I had a long Twitter argument with a born again Christian friend last night, and even he conceded that as long as he, as a preacher, wasn’t required to marry same sex couples, he could see no reason to legislate against it. He doesn’t like the idea, but he said, “what I would like and what I would legislate are two different things”.
    Both my anecdata (and there is more of it) and the polls point at overwhelming support for it. Who do these politicians think they are representing?

  2. Who do these politicians think they are representing?

    I really have no idea. I am completely baffled that these politicians are actually dismissing what would be a popular policy. Bigotry can be the only reason for it. :/

  3. New article from the SMH: http://www.smh.com.au/technology/technology-news/family-first-candidate-wendy-francis-stands-by-gay–slur-on-twitter-20100809-11s5c.html?autostart=1
    Apparently, now Francis is comparing children raised by same-sex parents to the stolen generation. I’m not sure what the actual logic behind this is, but… well, if I didn’t know better I’d say that she was trying to make the most inappropriate and offensive comparisons possible.
    Once again, however, the commenters are (mostly) doing a great job of of calling this out for the bullshit that it is.

  4. We had a stolen generation and we saw that that social experiment left children confused…
    Yeah, that’s totally the worst thing that happened to the stolen generation, confusion. Completely comparable to growing up in a loving home.
    Fortunately I can compensate with the very real pleasure of voting Mr Fielding out. And judging from this community response, so will the rest of Victoria.

  5. Non-bendy Wendy’s remarks are very very similiar in tone to nutty fundie christian complaints about IVF generally when “test-tube babies” were getting the same press as Lindy Chamberlain in the 1980s.
    Put your hands in the air, sway from side to side and yell Munch-like, “But its not natooorraaaallll….” and the Stolen Generations comparison was made, gosh let me cast my mind back to 1999… ummm now what was the name of minister who wanted to prevent lesbians from accessing IVF.. what was his name… ummm…ummmm…

  6. Apparently the claim is that Ms Francis didn’t tweet what was on her tweet-feed … http://tinyurl.com/2cql9wk
    If it were not so pathetic, it would almost be funny … in an emetic-inducing fashion *sighs*

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