It’s been over a week since our Prime Minister stood up in Parliament, looked at the Opposition Leader and called him what some Australian women had been calling him for years.
Followed was a 15-minute tirade that went viral and set the predominantly male press gallery in to over drive. Over the past week we have watched social media and commentators dissect it from every perspective possible.
If you watched just the mainstream media you would have found it hard to find the feminist voice amongst them. Those I did find argued the double standards of politics. True – but then a lot of politics carries double standards.
However as Josephine Packman wrote on Discordia our PM is engulfed in a ‘toxic woman hating culture’. So when Tony Abbott said ‘the government should have died of shame’ in the first parliamentary sitting after Alan Jones’ appalling remarks, her response was really no surprise.
It was a poor choice of words and anyone who uttered them in front of the PM at that time deserved a serving.
But it was what was said in that serving that very few people talked about.
The PM quoted the Leader of the Opposition when he questioned whether “women were physiologically able to handle power” or had said “abortion was the easy way out”.
It is a well-known fact that Tony Abbott struggles to separate church and state when it comes to governance. That ideology puts him poles apart from feminist views where not only is abortion a right, it is one we should have access to. As Kate Ellis said on QandA, when it came to RU486 “he had to be overruled by the parliament when we voted in a conscience vote because, as Health Minister, he refused to do it.”
So when his wife came out recently and referred to him as a ‘feminist’ I really was concerned with what her definition of that was. However as we saw, the Prime Minister helped explain it to him.