The Prime Minister Is A Bully

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Dear Julia,

I saw you on the news last week announcing your new anti-bullying strategy.

After 30 years of working with young people it is a topic dear to my heart.

 

You explained some of the figures:

2,500 official suicides in Australia last year with over 80% being linked to bullying…horrific isn’t it?

 

Who are the bullies?

They are those who are in a position to have power over others – those who have the ability to influence the lives of others in a negative way by what they say and what they do.

 

Who wields the most power in our society at the highest levels?

Obviously those in authority and those with money – big business, big institutions and politicians.

 

Julia, I could almost guarantee to you that a disproportionate number of those suicides occurred in rural Australia.

A young man in the country is almost twice as likely to take his own life.

 

If that young man happens to be gay that figure rises by another 30%….

 

Why is that do you think?

Why?

Because he’s not just bullied in the schoolyard and made invisible by his school.

Not just shunned by his family and rejected by his community.

Not simply ostracized from his church and marginalized by society in general….

It starts at the top Julia, with you and Tony and those we’ve chosen to “lead” us.

 

This young man is told by the leaders of his country that he has no value. That he is an inferior citizen, deprived of his basic human rights.

This is about much more than simply “same-sex marriage”.
It is the epitome in hypocrisy Julia, to talk about stopping bullying and then to enshrine into law that it’s okay to discriminate against someone based on their sexuality.

 

You give the ultimate bullies, the haters who hide behind the thin veneer of religion the legal right to bully.

You pour taxpayer funds into “Independent” schools, then anoint them with the right to discriminate as they please – to refuse to employ someone based on their sexuality, the right to sack staff if they’re suspected to be gay.

You grant them permission to destroy the lives of people who don’t fit their narrow-minded world view.

 

If that’s not bullying then please tell me what is Julia?

 

It’s about as acceptable as having a rule that people with red hair or “sticky-out ears” can’t be politicians……..

 

Essentially you condone bullying and hatred at the highest of levels, actually funding bullies to perpetuate hate crimes against good people.

Strangely ,you don’t even seem to notice how out of step this is with the rest of the population and the rest of the world…you don’t seem to remember that we’re living in 2013…

 

So excuse me Julia (and your mirror twin Tony).

Excuse my cynicism.

Bullying certainly needs to be addressed in this country in a big way.
Stop spouting platitudes and start leading.

 

If you really want change to happen then you need to start at the top.

 

Your target market, those most at-risk young people, have inbuilt crap detectors.

They’re distrustful and weary of people talking at them.

For them the real proof comes not in what we say, but in what we do.

If you seriously want them to learn how to stand up to bullies then grow a backbone and do it.

 

Show them how to find that courage inside…..

 

I don’t want to go to any more funerals.

 

Yours Sincerely,

Telene

An Apple Called Noodles

Source:Google Images

Source:Google Images

 

 

I used to look out of a Window.

Now I’m running free, on Safari, going OS and exploring the world.

I’ve even spotted a Firefox and a Mountain Lion!

I’ve started my own Garage Band and met Mac The Ripper…

 

Yes, I’ve seen the light (insert “Hallelujah Chorus” here.)

My creativity has been unleashed and I’ve entered the Brave New World (to me) of Apple Mac.

No more Dinosaurs- (Riding The Dinosaur) Steggie can retire gracefully back to the swamp…

 

Windows was about structure, something I had to “learn”. My left brain used to hurt. Noodles (my Mac) seems to flow, a bit like a mind-map. Now my whole brain gets to hurt!

At times Noodles makes perfect sense. At other times she makes no sense at all-a bit like my brain really. She has a bit more common sense, a lot more intuition but a lot less logical organisation (which makes it bloody hard to find where I left things….)

 

My desktop looks like someone vomited all over it.

 

Sometimes I can work Noodles out all by myself. Sometimes she tells me off with big red exclamation marks if I do something stupid. At other times I have to ring the Apple Help Desk and sob pitifully with highly technical questions. (Like: “Where’s the “off” button again??”)

They humour my cries of desperation and frustration, patting me on the head and reassuring me I’ll get better soon…..and the sooner the better!

(They preface every answer with a surprised “Gosh, no one’s ever asked that question before!”)

She’s taking time….lots of it. I’ve used up a whole year’s internet in a few weeks just doing “Tutorials For REAL Dummies.” I’m having to learn a whole new language- the language of fruit…

I spent 2 whole days trying to work out how to cut out an image. That used to take me 2 minutes. My duck keeps looking at me ‘cos he thinks I’m talking to him. It’s not actually “duck” that I’m saying- just something that rhymes with it…

Noodles does clever things amazingly- it’s the simple things that are keeping me bamboozled.

So, I’m on a learning curve- a steep one with muddy slopes.

If this post comes out upside down, back-to-front with a picture of a jellyfish driving a bus then you’ll know why- it wasn’t me, it was Noodles.

And she definitely has a mind of her own…..

Square Pegs, Round Holes

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I recently received a beautiful bunch of flowers. I was admiring them and said to Mum: “Aren’t they gorgeous! I’ve always loved gerberas…” Mum only gave a little sigh and a slight eye roll before looking at me and saying…”Well, that’s nice…but they’re actually marigolds and sunflowers….”

“Oh, is that sort of close?,” I asked hopefully.

I’m not particularly good at knowing all of the stuff that you’re “supposed” to know.

I can identify native plants in a flash. I can remember the scientific names of all of the members of the kangaroo family, tell a hammer from a chisel and talk for hours on how our minds work. I can remember all the words of 70’s songs and know a good quality ukulele when I hear one.

But….. I have no idea how to select a good wine, know which lipstick doesn’t smudge or how to cook a macaroon. I have no idea who is a “celebrity” and why they’re a celebrity, what colour is in fashion this autumn or the name of the latest “must-have” technology. I don’t recognize sports stars or know the plot of the evening soapie. If these subjects come up at a quiz night and I’m on your team well…..whoops, sorry!!

It’s not that I have anything against these subjects, it’s just that they hold no interest for me and never have. I’m not at all bothered by the fact that others care about these things- go for it! They’re simply not relevant to me or to how I choose to live my life.

What we sometimes forget is, that’s okay! It’s actually okay to be “different”. Media and social norms would have us believe that “everyone” thinks things like the above are important. They have a vested interest in doing so.

I’ve found that there’s a whole world of people who are quite happy to prove that theory wrong. People who are quite comfortable to be square pegs in the world of round holes….

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