Macklin / Katy’s call strikes a chord

“The more women in politics the better. They get upset when one calls the other a ‘cow’. But look around the world at what their male counterparts have been up to lately,” writes Seven Days columnist ROBERT MACKLIN

CHIEF Minister Katy Gallagher’s call for more “high profile” women to fill the new Assembly seats will have struck a congenial chord with many Canberrans.

Robert Macklin.

Robert Macklin.

However, it would be a pity to confine the quest to those who have already made their mark. Many’s the flower that blushes unseen in the rich garden of our suburbia.

Of course, the more women in politics the better. They get upset when one calls the other a “cow”. But look around the world at what their male counterparts have been up to lately. Not too many women at the political helm in the Middle East, for example.

And while the AUSMIN talks between America’s John Kerry and Chuck Hagel and Australia’s David Johnston and Julie Bishop were relatively low key, PM Tony Abbott seemed to be fairly spoiling for a fight in the killing fields of Iraq.

BACK home Immigration Minister Scott Morrison suddenly found an extra 4000 refugee places for “Christians and Yazidis” under threat in that troubled land. No doubt our own Muslim communities shook their heads in wonder. What did it say about Tony’s call for their involvement in “Team Australia”?

ABSOLUTELY no truth to the rumour that Treasurer Joe Hockey is a Labor Party mole. No, honestly. His crack about poor people not driving their cars as much as rich ones was just a bit of fun to lighten the mood (as were those crocodile tears of apology). Ricky Muir, the Australian Motoring Enthusiast senator, got the joke with his lovely line about country folk riding their cows to town. Nice one, Joe.

FRIGHTENING to hear of the attempted abduction of that eight-year-old boy at Nichols. Full marks to the lad for resisting the demands that he get in the car then running to his school. But what’s really sad is the effect the story will have on parents everywhere. Gone are those careless days, it seems, when walking home from school each afternoon was a beaut childhood adventure.

SPEAKING of changing times, there used to be a journalistic rule that suicides were unmentionable for fear that vulnerable readers might follow suit. If true, the blanket coverage of Robin Williams’ departure will have terrible consequences. Either that or it will disprove the theory once and for all.

THE police raid on an alleged drug factory in Hume is yet another example of the way actions today trash the association with the heroes after whom they were named. Alexander Maconochie, the penal reformer, doesn’t deserve the rotten prison that bears his moniker. And Hamilton Hume, our greatest native-born explorer, would be appalled at such goings on in his namesake.

Hume’s amazing achievements were driven home recently at a meeting in Yass where a remarkable collection of interested parties – from the towns and cities along the Old Hume Highway, national heritage, tourism and motoring groups – formed a body to transform the highway from a thoroughfare to a tourist venue, much like Route 66 in the US.

OUR own Scarlet Pimpernels, MLAs Giulia Jones and Vicki Dunn, promised to release their plan to rescue our sex workers from their fate this month. Not long now till there’s dancing in the Fyshwick streets!

robertmacklin.com

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