16 January 2013


Bob Carr, Australia's foreign minister, was quoted on ABC radio on Wednesday 15 January 2013 as saying that he welcomes a re-opening of a North Korean embassy in Canberra because it would allow Australia to draw attention to human rights abuses in North Korea.

This is the same Bob Carr who was premier of New South Wales for about 10 years during which he found it difficult to equalise age of consent for sexual relations between heteros and homos.

This is the same Bob Carr who is now part of the Gillard Australian Labor Party (sic)government which has just granted exemptions for religious bodies from equal human rights for the Gay Lesbian, Transgender, HIV (GLTH) members of the community on the grounds that they can choose who meets their religious requirements in the running of their organisations such as aged care, schools and other religious institutions!

And before finishing with Bob Carr let us consider his and his government's deepest hypocrisy in relation to nuclear countries such as North Korea and those not EVER mentioned as nuclear powers such as Israel, because we - read US bumboys or arselickers - consider ourselves as being one of Israel's closest allies. (Let them occupy the whole of the west bank and Gaza and there will be no further problem in Israel and Palestine because Palestine will no longer exist!)


It is difficult to know where to begin with this whole ghastly story of "O What a Tangled Web We Weave..........." because we should all have learnt by now that governments of all permutations and combinations lie to us all the time and cover up those issues which they don't want us ever to find out about - Julian Assange comes to mind.

But back to the present dilemma. Gillard and her government are stacked with homophobes, from Gillard herself to Roxon, Swan, Plibersek, Combet, Ferguson, Danby, Wong - yes you read correctly - she is a Christian lesbian (a contradiction in terms - tautology?) and others too numerous to mention. The hypocrisy starts with issues like gay marriage, gays employed in religious institutions, gays in positions of authority in various capacities, and religious institutions which pay no taxes but claim exemption on the grounds of reverse discrimination.

This article by David Marr appeared in The Age on Monday 14 January 2013 and explains much better than I can what is meant by hypocrisy in this government, led by an atheist and kowtowing to the religious right and all its adherents in order to ensure their support at the next election and for as long as possible into the future.

This was followed by letters in The Age on the next two days:

Visible endorsement

The exemptions proposed under federal discrimination law (Comment, 14/1) are not in plain English. The section should be retitled ''Support for bigotry'' and should be explicitly opt in. Then we can clearly see which religions endorse bigotry.

Further, it's deeply hypocritical for those who give money or attend services to say, ''Oh, I don't support XYZ actions of my religion but still call myself a member.'' If you continue to belong, you visibly endorse the actions of the leadership and are answerable for what is done in your name.

Janine Truter, The Basin


Will Tony Abbott oppose the discriminatory anti-discrimination bill? Me thinks not.

Alan Williams, Port Melbourne


In thrall to church

IT BEGGARS belief that in a secular society, the church and, in particular, the Catholic Church, can hold such sway over the lives of ordinary Australians (''Labor's anti-discrimination legislation is a bigots' charter'', Comment, 14/1). Publicly funded institutions should not be able to discriminate against those who do not subscribe to a particular religious point of view.

But it is not only employees who are discriminated against; public Catholic maternity hospitals don't give their patients a three-month scan, presumably for fear they may choose to terminate if the scan throws up something untoward with the foetus.

Australia was formed as a secular state so why does our government collude with the churches?

Megan Peniston-Bird, Hawthorn

So out of touch

RELIGION is creeping insidiously into Australian politics and it will eventually backfire on those promoting it. It's bad enough that Labor cosies up to the Australian Christian Lobby, which only represents itself and not most Christians, let alone the wider community. This coupled with Labor continuing the Howard government's ideological blunder of placing fundamentalist chaplains in state schools reeks of special privilege to one sector of society.

Many socially progressive issues are being ignored by parliamentarians reliant on the faith-gene instead of rational and compassionate thinking. The Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill is a disgraceful display of kowtowing to religious leaders who are out of touch with the electorate.

David Nicholls, president, Atheist Foundation of Australia, Maitland, SA


It’s not OK to discriminate in regard to colour, age or sex, that is unless you are an organisation that believes in a book written many hundreds of years ago.

Geoff Lane, Gisborne

This article by Jonathan Swan was in The Age newspaper on 16 January 2013 and provides the news of the Gillard government's ongoing pandering to the religious right bigots who have her ear and provide so many of the votes.

When finally one day governments in Australia have the guts to tax religions we might be on the way to equality - and pigs will fly!!

GLTH people may work for us and we will gladly take their taxes, but EQUALITY??? Not in our lifetimes!

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Preston, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
90 years old, political gay activist, hosting two web sites, one personal: http://www.red-jos.net one shared with my partner, 94-year-old Ken Lovett: http://www.josken.net and also this blog. The blog now has an alphabetical index: http://www.red-jos.net/alpha3.htm