The leaders of the opposition in both New Zealand and Australia have both been sounding exactly like racist troglodytes. Do you think it's some kind of plague? Or possibly a plot?
John Howard had suggested that all citizens had sign a pledge to uphold 'Aussie values'. This isvery similar to Don Brash's* suggestion earlier in the year. Kim Beazeley had to try with both hands to come across as more of a racist troglodyte than John Howard, but he succeeded. Responding with a presisng question - why stop with citizens? The leader of the Labour party suggested that people must agree to uphold Aussie values to even enter the country. What did he see as the core Aussie values?
Mr Beazley said among Australian values to which new arrivals should commit would be respect for people's different views in religious and political terms, as well as respect for women.I suspect that he didn't have a hint of irony in claiming that 'respect for women' and 'mateship' were both core Aussie values. It makes me furious that these men can claim that respect for women, or equality with women are core values of either Australia or New Zealand.
Mateship, a "gender-free" concept, should also be included, he said.
In New Zealand women earn 84% of what men earn, we do the vast majority of the unpaid work, we have to pretend we're insane to get an abortion, women around the country get harrassed in their work and beaten in their homes, and those with power can rape women with impunity.
Don Brash, Kim Beazley and John Howard - they don't care - in fact they actively promote policies that would make things worse for women. But they're perfectly happy to use our lives, use our pain, as long as it's that days dog whistle.
* Don't you miss the days when most discussions about Don Brash had nothing to do with his sex life?