Tuesday, 30 May 2006

Media round-up

Have been meaning to post about the Sydney Writers' Festival, but want to write something that takes a bit of thought. In the mean time, there have been a whole bunch of things in the media that have caught my attention (OK, made me cross).

First up was the Daily Telegraph's disgusting attack on a day care in Marrickville that dared to have a book in its library that portrays a child with two mothers. The horror! My new favourite Minister Mal Brough, has apparently branded the curriculum ridiculous.
"At that age children should be fingerpainting and having fun, not learning about social behaviour which many parents regard as way beyond their years."
Then Premier Iemma decided to jump in with his view that the use of the book was inappropriate.
"If parents feel particularly strongly about educating children on these issues there is plenty of scope for them to do so at home where they run no risk of offending other parents who may hold opposing views and who may not be able to find childcare elsewhere."
Yes, heaven forbid that we offend homophobic parents who would like to bring their children up to hate gay people. Shall racists be given these same rights too? Lets just ban all books from schools if they contain anyone who isn't white, heterosexual, christian, married, and attractive.
[More justified outrage from zoe, suzoz, and georg.]

Next, I was flipping channels last night and caught a small section of Gretel Kileen's shameful attack on a recently evicted Big Brother housemate. I was horrified by the way she used her position of power to bully someone who she clearly didn't like and whose crime was to mention that the show's producers may have edited some film in order to make it look like he had kissed someone when he, in fact, hadn't. It was really unethical behaviour and I hope that she is ashamed of herself.

[More on this subject from galaxy and kim]

Finally, and this isn't the media's fault, but I was horrified (and, sadly, not surprised) by the reports of a US military massacre of 24 Iraqi civilians in November last year and the subsequent cover-up that has taken place. What would possess the Iraqi people to trust this military? How can anyone seriously believe that such a military could ever secure peace in Iraq? When are they going to admit that civilians in Iraq are less safe under the US occupation than they would be without them? Of course, now that law and order has completely broken down, they will not be completely safe regardless, but that is hardly an argument in support of the occupation.

OK, tomorrow I will start my reflections on the Writers' Festival. For the time being, suffice to say that it was very good - inspirational, entertaining and informative.

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