Monday, September 9, 2013

Respect (without the side serving of disrespect and hypocrisy)

Congratulations, Mr Abbott.

The Coalition won the election. You will soon be sworn in as Prime Minister of Australia.

Congratulations.

I didn't vote for you personally. Well, obviously - you didn't run in my electorate. But I didn't vote for the Coalition.

I have in the past. I've also voted for Labor in the past. I'm what you'd call a swinging voter. And this time around, I was more impressed with what Labor had to offer.

The majority of my fellow Australians disagreed with me. As was their right.

I'm disappointed. I will say that. I am disappointed and disheartened to see the Coalition back in charge of this 'business', and think our nation would have benefited more under Labor.

But that is that. The polling booths are closed. The deal is done.

I've seen some pretty horrible things written on facebook, twitter and other forms of social media. Things written by people disappointed with the election result. Things attacking you personally, Mr Abbott. Things attacking those who voted for the Coalition.

I may not have voted for the Coalition, but I'm not going to accept that sort of behaviour.

I will not call you vile names. I will not question the sexuality of your partner, say rude things about your physical appearance or suggest that you can't do your job.

I will not point at what you look like, what you wear or what you do during your free time to ridicule you.

I will not call you stupid. You don't become a Rhodes Scholar and rise to become leader of a major political party by being stupid. (It doesn't necessarily prevent you from saying strange things from time to time, but I digress.)

I will not wish bad things upon you, or use foul language to describe you or members of your family.

You deserve respect. Just as Ms Gillard deserved respect. Just as Mr Rudd deserved respect.

I will not go from demanding respect for them over the past few years to now attacking you personally. I am not a hypocrite.

I think it's pretty amazing that we have freedom of speech in this country. That I can write that I preferenced Labor above the Coalition here on my blog without fear of retribution. I will not abuse that by slinging insults around because I didn't get my way. I am not a child.

I will just wait and see what happens. I will watch and learn over the next three years. I will hope that you act in the interests of all Australians, and not just the top tier. I will hope that you rethink your planned approaches to the NBN, asylum seekers and child care, to name a few.

I will listen to what you say. And if I disagree, I will voice that disagreement with respect.

And, come the next election, I will reassess my political view.

It may change. It may not. Only time will tell.


What have you learnt from the election - and from the discussions following?

40 comments:

  1. Beautifully put Emily, I was going to write something similar but now I don't need to. This is exactly how I feel about it all. Nothing would give me more joy than to see him succeed and be a great PM because it would mean great things for us all. Fingers crossed and only time will tell, he is here now and all we can do is hope he does what is best for us all

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  2. You needn't have felt nervous about this piece. It is all perfectly reasonable. This past election has been the worst that I can remember. I too classify myself as a swinging voter. I wanted to see the policies of both parties laid out clearly so that I could weigh them up for myself. Sadly there was no rational, impartial commentary in the mainstream press. Murdoch was a disgrace and Fairfax was only marginally better. The bile and just plain ignorance on social media (on both sides of the political divide)was sick making. I really hope that as a nation we can lift our game next time but I'm not optimistic.

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    1. Yes, it was difficult to sift through everything! But the information was there (varying degrees of it) for anyone who went looking.

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  3. I felt the same way about our President Obama. For years I was disgusted by all the people who did not vote for President Bush disrespecting him by calling him "Bush" which even in print was Spat out in contempt.

    Disrespecting your President is disrespecting your country. I do not think our current President is doing a great job, but he is doing his best, he was voted fairly by a majority of our citizens and he is MY President and he and the office will always have my respect!

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  4. Very well said and written Emily. But for me it is very hard to show respect to someone who shows such little respect for others. Even after he won the election he continued to have digs at Rudd and the labor party. When you make some of the comments he's made, it's hard for things not to get personal. I am often around quite a few liberal people who are glad for this change. I'm going to sit quietly by and just see how things play out. Maybe a change will be as good as a holiday, but I know a lot of people on struggle street already, who are really worried about how this change is going to affect them. Fingers crossed it doesn't. x Aroha (#teamIBOT)

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    1. I understand what you mean, but then I don't think you can fight fire with fire in this instance. You can't call for decency then act indecently yourself. (Well, not YOU Aroha, you're lovely, but the general 'you'.)

      One thing I've seen doing the rounds in particular has really disgusted me. I just think that if the roles were reversed and people were making certain t-shirts about Gillard, there'd (rightly) be an outcry. But because it's Abbott, it's okay? No, I don't think so.

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  5. Well written! I agree. I was sickened at some of the comments on social media over the weekend and the trashy Facebook pages that were started. Everyone deserves a chance and respect.

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    1. Thanks, Jodi. I understand the disappointment, but I too have been surprised and sickened by some of the memes and comments doin the rounds!

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  6. Dear Anonymous,

    Thanks for visiting and commenting. I removed your comment not because you disagreed with me, but because of the language you used to do so.

    Please, if you visit this page again, feel free to leave a new comment voicing your opinion without the personal attack. I'd love to continue the discussion.

    Cheers

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  7. I was devastated at the results, but name calling never gets anyone anywhere. I recieved a few 'you're an idiot' (with language that was a bit stronger than that)for expressing my despair at the results. It felt a little like a child saying 'sucked in' and did nothing to make me feel that they had valid points. We have the hand we are dealt with, and all we can hope is that it's not as bad as we think, that there is more policy making and less personal attacking.

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    1. That's it. Calling names doesn't prove any sort of point except that you're a name caller.

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  8. I have learned that people are very passionate about the government and are not above doing what you mentioned on SM. I was astounded at the response that it created. I can't remember if I was on twitter at the last elections but if I was, I don't recall these same things happening.
    While I didn't vote the same as you, I do believe what you said to be true - everyone should be treated with respect and leave the name calling and mud slinging - where it belongs - outside the SM forum. At the same time I do understand why people would feel the need to express their opinion and I can choose to unfollow or defriend them if I don't want to read what they have written.
    Have the best day !
    Me

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    1. Thanks for the comment! Agree with all of it - we all have differing opinions. And you're right, I can block them if I want to. Excellent point.

      I can't remember seeing it after the last election, either. But I wasn't on twitter then, so who knows?

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  9. Well said, I'm slightly nervous at his focus on the middle to upper classes, I'm also not sure what stopping the carbon tax will do - I will beat my left boob that goods and services won't drop in price just because big businesses no longer have a big tax to pay - they'll just pocket more. I agree with the name calling - it's childish and doesn't help! x

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    1. Thanks, Em. We'll just have to wait and see!

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  10. Nice post! I learnt on the weekend that there is such a thing as the "pirate party" and if you tweet about them, they will tweet back. Sufficed to say I am really glad they didn't get in!

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  11. Nice post! I learnt on the weekend that there is such a thing as the "pirate party" and if you tweet about them, they will tweet back. Sufficed to say I am really glad they didn't get in!

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    1. Oooh, interesting! Yes, the proliferation of parties was confusing. Vote below the line!

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  12. Well said. I am often shocked at the disrespect shown to our leaders (Julia especially).

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    1. Yes, I'm not impressed about some of the things I've read about Abbott, but most of it's still tame compared to what Gillard copped, for sure.

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  13. I couldn't agree more. And it's not just about disprespect to our leaders, it's about the kinds of things that people will say about ANY ONE. Shame on them! x

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    1. Thanks, and yes. This is less a political post than it is one on general decency and manners!

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  14. A great post. I've tried to block out most of what has been said, and shared over the last week regarding this. Everyone does have the right to an opinion, and to have their voice heard, but there's a way to go about it.. and a way not to.

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    1. '...a way to go about it... and a way not to.' YES. Thank you.

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  15. Well said. I really hate the way politics has become so much about the personality and not much about the policies... It would be nice if everyone understood the concept of respectful debate!

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    1. Yes, it's becoming like a US presidential campaign. Slogans and marketing and voting for 'the guy' instead of the party.

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  16. Amen - I agree wholeheartedly. I get so furious that it is so difficult to correctly assess a person, thanks to the bias of media. I feel I don't really know anything much about TA, and so I'm reserving judgement. Hope makes the world go round..

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    1. That's it. Refusing to judge this early. A little disappointed by a few decisions already, but we'll see what happens.

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  17. It's interesting what some people choose to comment on - I had such issues when anyone criticised Gillard for her hair colour. It drove me nuts -attack her policies but seriously? Hair colour? It only shows up the commenter as an idiot.

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    1. Absolutely. An unoriginal idiot, too. I guess you've got to look at it the other way - you must be doing an all right job if your hair colour is the only thing people can knock!

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  18. So true! Name calling is just another bullying tactic. It's always dirty when families are attacked. I hope this government stops wasting time and money and makes a change to benefit our country. Thanks for linking with The Lounge. Robo X

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    1. Thanks for having me! Yep, the personal attacks are bad enough, but when you move on to partners and family, it's definitely gone too far.

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  19. Well written. I read it when you first published it and revisiting now for The Lounge, and I wonder how you feel about it now, one month in!

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    1. Now I don't understand why I was hesitant to publish it! Thanks for stopping by again.

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  20. I too hope he acts in the best interest of all Australians and not the rich elite. I respect his position yet I fear his decisions.

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    1. Yes, well it's been an interesting ride so far! Three years. It can get better.

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  21. As the editor of a satire blog, I suspect some of us will make gentle fun of things, no matter what eventuates. But only for amusement and entertainment purposes. And respectfully, of course.

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    1. Oh absolutely. Gentle fun and comedic observations, all good. Mean-spirited comments and attacks? No thanks!

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