Comment

indigenous affairs September 22, 2018


Why I won’t stand for the national anthem

It took me quite a while before I decided not to stand for the national anthem at school. I started talking with my family about the anthem, and the words in it. We talked about what it might mean to different people, and I started to feel as if...

indigenous affairs September 15, 2018


Abbott’s envoy appointment derisory

As an Aboriginal person, a leadership spill is an interesting phenomenon to observe. There is a lot of earnest frustration – this isn’t who we voted for! – and there is a feeling that important decisions are being made about your life without you...

politics September 1, 2018


Scott Morrison and the ‘strongman’ capitulations

Tony Abbott’s face as he emerged from the party room is the image I can’t get out of my head from the chaos of the past weeks. Defeat had done its work. He was pared back to the bone. His skin looked a mess and his eyes barely focused as he mouthed...

media September 8, 2018


Speaking for freedom

Online, in forums around the world, at the United Nations and beyond, the Australian government is quick to point out how important free speech is to a functioning democracy. The Liberal Party’s own website proudly proclaims, “We believe in those...

indigenous affairs August 25, 2018


The folly of Jacinta Price

No one with a revulsion for the influence of the alt-right or neo-Nazis in our body politic would be surprised to learn that an aspiring Aboriginal candidate for the House of Representatives could graduate from the role of children’s entertainer “...

law & crime July 7, 2018


The long fight for safe injecting rooms

Last Saturday, the second medically supervised injecting centre (MSIC) in Australia opened its doors in Melbourne’s North Richmond. It was a long time coming. Nearly two decades ago, I met with a group of nurses, doctors, drug users and their...

health June 30, 2018


Bureaucratising disability

Back in the day, before the National Disability Insurance Scheme arrived in our area, my son was supported by the community mental health system – a network of services focused on keeping people out of the acute hospital system. There was always...

politics June 23, 2018


What is political correctness?

My brother’s arms are rigid with muscle. He’s wearing maroon trackies and a local footy jersey that shimmers in the sun, his fade a silver band around his head, every inch of him a typical Leb. We’re standing outside his house in Chester Hill, by...

media June 16, 2018


Murdoch and Trump, sons of oligarchy

Fans of Rupert Murdoch will be relieved to know he and wife Jerry Hall enjoyed a date night at Scott’s in London’s Mayfair this week. Looking like Stanley Tucci’s benign granddad in a bright blue suit and trainers, friends were relieved to see the...

politics June 9, 2018


Michaelia Cash and Shorten’s factions

Your correspondent has previously gone on record describing Barnaby Joyce as a big-hatted toby jug the colour of ham. In Sky News “Outsider” Rowan Dean, I’ve seen both a wet, upturned ugg boot and an explosion in a woolshed. So it is to be hoped...

immigration June 2, 2018


Manus Island and post-traumatic stress

No matter how hard or how long I take to try to comprehend it, the pieces of the ghastly jigsaw will never fit together. Every day, my imagination takes me wandering, but each time I find myself back where I began. It is impossible to see the full...