Peter Dutton said yesterday that “People who are criticising the government criticism are undermining the ABC’s apology” for having Zaky Mallah on Q&A.
And so this prompted me to write a letter to Peter Dutton.
Dear Mr Dutton,
Yesterday you said as was reported in mutual outlets but I am quoting from The Age that that “People who are criticising the government criticism are undermining the ABC’s apology”
It is indeed a terrible thing that Zaky Mallah was allowed to appear on “our” national broadcaster and worse allowing him to have an opinion. Which he then projected FROM HIS FACE! Like some kind of bullet or other dangerous object.
Although it should be pointed out for the record that what he said was that MP Steve Cioboon’s actions and rhetoric might make some people want to join ISIL he was not inciting people to actually do so.
Your stance on this matter seems emblematic of your grasp of logic. Whereby somehow my (or others) opinion on something can affect an outcome that has already happened. Sadly this is not the case because when I look at the recording of MP Steve Cioboon Q&A I don’t see him burst into flames at the suggestion that someone who went through due process in our court system should still be evicted from the country. Or that “Leaks” from the government were part of good government whereby we need someone moral enough to leak information they disagree with but not moral enough to consider leaking a bad thing. I guess my mind powers are weak.
But here we are. It seems that you are advocating the stance that If you’re not for this government, their ideology and what they deem to be Newspeak then you are against them. You recognise that ideas are dangerous and so you must have ideas that are in line with yours.
No Mr Dutton my disagreement with the government does not undermine the ABC’s apology because despite paying for the ABC I don’t speak for it. Oh that I did! There would have been no apology I can promise you that.
In the same way that I disagreed with the Chaser when they apologised for their “Make a realistic wish” sketch. Or Andrew Bolt when he apologised for….oh no wait for some reason he’s never been made to apologise for anything he says despite being as inflammatory and insulting as anyone I can think of……hurm…that seems strange and unfair? He was taken to Court but then the Prime Minister himself called him to say how unfair he thought that was. Since I have nothing to do with those people my opinion on their apology cannot change in value no matter what I do.
Of course our beloved leader had to weigh in. “Our supposed national broadcaster is giving a platform to someone who hates us, hates our way of life, supports the terrorists who would do us harm,” he told the Nine Network’s Today program.
“The issue for the ABC, our national broadcaster is whose side are you on? Because all too often the ABC seems to be on everyone’s side but Australia’s.”
Hurm….I wasn’t aware that journalism was about “sides” but then having been a journalist for many years Tony would know that better than me wouldn’t he?
Indeed today he called for the “Rolling of heads” something people who have dealt with ISIL might consider inflammatory language.
I’m sure there’s something in the journalistic creed about reporting…mind you Tony seemed to be the kind of reporter that most reporters only ever dream about being, someone who can editorialise from behind the desk of someone who is supposed to be reporting.
Surely the purpose of Q&A is to specifically bring people of dissenting opinions together to engage in a discussion. Something sadly Tony Jones forgot as he ran the panel. It is a show where there can’t be false balance as people are brought on specifically to be faced by their detractors.
As to any claims of “Bias” or “Audience Stacking” I suggest you go look at some numbers. Any government that was voted in with only 45.55% of the vote and with a Prime Minster with an approval rating hovering around 29% has to realise that means that there is a large proportion of the population that does not support them, their leader or what they are doing. Therefore when faced with an opportunity to vent this frustration those people might speak out. If you can’t take this kind of criticism, which you clearly have issues with, I suggest you retire to Bali.
Another reality you might have to face (just a heads up) is that people might not take kindly to you stepping on freedom of speech or freedom of the press. Now I realise that we don’t have freedom of speech enshrined in our constitution (unlike another large European settled nation I could name) but our founders did expect that freedom of speech and freedom of the press are things that any well run nation should expect for its citizens. And that means that people from time to time might have to listen to unpopular opinion. (like every time Tony opens his mouth). Or controversial opinion, or opinion that might be considered uncouth. And it’s easy to defend speech that we agree with, a much harder task to defend speech that we don’t like but! This is the price for the society that we build. Not agreeing with your fellow Australians and not throwing them in jail or throwing a childish hissy fit when a broadcaster allows something you don’t agree with to go to air should be the duty of every Australian. Mr Dutton you have failed in that duty as has Tony Abbot and by en large the Labor party too. Those in power need to be criticised. We need to “Keep the bastards honest”. It is the duty of every citizen to “Speak truth to power” and that truth can only be found in your heart. That freedom, the freedom to say what we truly believe should be cherished, nurtured and kept and never be allowed to be take away from us. And if being on “Team Australia” means that I have to crush opinions that are not my own then fuck “Team Australia” I’m resigning my membership right now and no amount of flags will get me back. Oh and if you’re thinking “Maybe this letter constitutes terrorism, maybe I can get this guy’s citizenship revoked?” I’m white.