Speech made by independent senator Andrew Wilkie back in 2015 and important for reasons related to the fact he made this speech to an empty chamber.
I’ve banged on for years and years about the erosion of civil and political rights here in Australia. We are not alone of course in being either stupid or a coward’s collective. Remember what John Curran said, “The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternalvigilance.” and Benjamin Franklin’s “Those who would give up essential liberty, to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety”. Last century a number of nations became dictatorships both of the far left and far right. This could happen at any time and anywhere if a few conditions are present including and essentially fear. Remembering Roosevelt’s famous ‘The only thing we have to fear is fear itself’listen to how your local politicians treat you like scared, dumb children.
Other than working on the comic strip I’m also looking at ways to upload 3d and virtual reality content to the Internet and have run into a few problems. One of those is that WordPress which ‘powers’ this and my other website does not support interactive content other than with a plug-in that enables 3d images and video but not the game-like interactivity I want. The WordPress blog says they are working on this but a possible solution could be to upload the VR content to a standard site and then link it into the WP sites using iframe. Something tells me it won’t work but with enthusiasm and determination to try this workaround I created a subdomain to the WordPress art site only to find it wasn’t visible.
My entrails told me this was going to become a major problem and so contacted the tech support people who advised I needed to change where the DNS points and in ‘up to 24 hours’ the change would propagate and all would be hunky dory. No worries and phew – my entrails were wrong, I did as instructed and found that the change also took the main site off air but a day would not be a major issue. That was three days ago and so far the change has propagated to two – yes two – countries. Now waiting for the good tech people to get back to me with a solution and so can’t say when the art site will be back up.
Talking about entrails and technology-related health issues, I surrendered under the duress of VR creation to the need to upgrade my coding skills and am now spending time learning Python and Java. I kid you not – when I look at code I have an allergic reaction that manifests itself as stomach cramps, sweaty palms and dizziness. Still, I’m managing to finish modules and maybe this gradual acclimatization to complicated shallow thinking will cure what to a creative person is as boring as watching paint dry. To explain – a creative work is born deep within and then by force of having to manifest itself to the world, it rises up as Ginsberg explained and spews out of the artist. Today with virtual reality creating a space accessible to anyone with an Internet connection there is no escape from learning the tools needed to place texts of all kinds within this space. Actually, virtual reality is not new – Michael Angelo’s Sistine chapel paintings create a virtual environment designed to give the Renaissance peasant a vision of what heaven and hell could be. Pretty sure that had he lived today he would dump paintbrush, hammer and chisel for camera and computer.
OK and other than we are all happy the Thai boys were found safe and healthy, I’ll just dump a link here to a recent Human Rights Watch report on the treatment of gays in Indonesia. If you believe human rights are important including those of people you don’t like or agree with, then maybe cancel that holiday in Indonesia? Who would want to visit a nation where men – for whatever reason – are paraded naked in front of a jeering crowd?
Was happy this morning hearing the Northern Territory first minister acknowledge the harm caused by the territory’s ‘buggery laws’ which were in place as late as 1983.
‘Whosoever shall be convicted of the abominable crime of buggery, committed either with mankind or any animal, shall be liable to be imprisoned for life with hard labour.’
In his speech the NT first minister said,
“The brutality of that language. More so, the brutality of the message: You are not worthy. You are not welcome. You are an abomination.”
As an older same-gender-attracted person I can say that is precisely what young gays had to endure but worse still was the resultant choice gay youth were forced to make – that been that to be accepted and loved by family, friends and community a same-gender-attracted young person had no choice other than to self-hate. The results were often disastrous and long-lasting because a person long socialised into self-loathing will make choices that are self-loathing, including trying to be like everyone else and going out with and even marrying a person of the opposite gender. This can lead to dangerous situations where the denied self will seek expression in any way available and possible as I think is the reason the Catholic church has experienced high levels of sex abuse problems. A Polish priest who a few years ago ‘came out’ and introduced his Spanish manfriend said that in his opinion about half of all priests are gay. I think it correct law is upheld but also that greater compassion should be shown to people who themselves are the victims of their wrong belief they could live a life that is against nature. Unfortunately we still live in a cruel self-righteous world and even if this initiative of the NT government is welcome it remains there is still a long way to go and there is a danger we are not becoming a freer more accepting society but rather one where the LGBTQI community has simply been admitted into the ranks of mainstream oppressors and so neutered as a movement that could challenge limitations on freedom of expression for example. As the saying goes – there is no free lunch and gay males may find one day that same-gender marriage was an overpriced hamburger from Greasy Jill’s takeaway.
Below is a link to a video of Harry Hay (founder of the first American gay rights movement) speaking on the subject of gay youth and self-hate.