Archive for the ‘social justice’ Category
I proudly subscribed to your publication last month. I looked forward to reading insightful pieces written by prominent Australians about our nation’s “Politics, Society & Culture”, as your tag line explains.
My excitement when I pulled my first issue out of the letterbox yesterday fell, almost with a thud to the driveway, when I saw the sparkling smiles of The Obamas dressed in their fairytale finery on the cover of this supposedly Australian publication.
However, as I do adore the Obamas and cheered the US election result with some vigour myself, I figured they probably deserved their place on yet another cover (The Monthly is among such friends as Rolling Stone and Men’s Health in picking the same cover star). Obama’s election matters to all of us and I do hope he’ll come visit us soon.
But when I read Galarrwuy Yunupingu’s utterly amazing piece about his life, his hopes, his disappointment, his frustrations and his visions for our country, my own disappointment and frustration led me to writing this letter.
Why was his story not given the pride of place on your cover? Obama is the World’s Black Man, yes, and we are all incredibly proud of him. But Galarrwuy Yunupingu is Our Very Own Black Man.
I normally hate being parochial, but I truly believe his piece should be read and appreciated and acted upon by every Australian, and it feels to me that by adding yet another smiling Obama to newsstands you may have missed a great opportunity to bring our country’s own healing back to the front page.
I doubt Ghandi got much wrong in his time. And I reckon the great man was pretty right when he said:
An eye for an eye, and soon the whole world is blind.
Retributive justice is a pretty full-on topic, and I won’t go into much more detail than to say that when I read about last night’s execution of the Bali bombers, I was incredibly disheartened.
People might say that this finally brings an end to the 2002 tragedy, but I wonder if maybe we might have had an end long before now had they merely been given a life sentence and left to rot in jail without the circus of the appeals and now this.
Frankly, this makes it worse. They are now officially martyrs, and who knows how that will be used by their supporters?
This makes me very sad. That is all.
Professor Jeanette Hacket, Vice Chancellor, Curtin University of Technology, takes pleasure in inviting you to the Launch of the Carmen Lawrence Collection and Curtin Library Public Lecture by Dr Lawrence
Why Inequality Matters
Thursday 13 November 2008
4.30pm Light refreshments served
5.15pm Launch and public lecture
John Curtin Gallery and BankWest Theatre,
Curtin University of Technology, Kent Street, Bentley
RSVP: 9 November 2008 (acceptances only)
Tel: 08 9266 2563 or email: email@example.com
In her lecture Dr Lawrence will argue that the most important attribute of a civil society is equality between its citizens and that policies which reduce inequality to the maximum extent possible are likely to be the most effective in improving general well being and reducing civil strife.
♥ you guys!
— Sunili ×ο×ο
Dear News Ltd
You are such fucktards.
Having “FIRST BLACK PRESIDENT” as
your giant fucking headline completely
misses the fucking point, you fucking
morons. America has grown up. You
“Plenty [of this]” and “plenty [of that]”
and “many many” means squat. If it
was close, I would agree that there is
racism. But it wasn’t. You must be
a bleeding-heart little-l liberal if
you think Americans voted for him
JUST BECAUSE he is black.
However, since I’m feeling generous
this evening, I’ll pay you on your
ARE YOU EFFING KIDDING ME????
That you voted yes on 8 totes puts
a dampener on this.
Sunili (sad face)
STAND UP Perth
5:30pm, Friday 17 October 2008
Forrest Place, Perth
STAND UP Against Poverty is a worldwide call to take action against poverty and inequality and for the Millennium Development Goals. It is a unique global mobilisation which calls on civil society, schools, businesses and NGOs and every day people to band together with the same message – that we must MAKE POVERTY HISTORY.
Labor Readers’ Club
6.30pm, Tuesday 21st October 2008
The Velvet Lounge – in the back section of the Flying Scotsman Cnr Walcott and Beaufort Streets, Mt Lawley
The next Labor Readers’ event will discuss the latest Quarterly Essay by Tim Flannery: ‘Now or Never: A Sustainable Future for Australia?‘ (Quarterly Essay, Issue 31).
Flannery, the 2007 Australian of the Year, outlines the threat that global warming poses to humanity. His essay is a passionate plea for both citizens and policy-makers alike to act now and adopt sustainability as a key organising principle.
Come along and join in the discussion, all are warmly welcomed. The only prerequisite to being a Reader is an open, critical mind and an interest in the future of Australia.
The topic this year is POVERTY.
Yesterday I wrote rather flippantly about wanting an iPod and going oh, look at me, I’m a 20-something in Australia with no responsibilities and a highly disposable income. And that was just after I’d read a news story about how millions of people are at risk of dying of starvation in Zimbabwe.
When I did my Arts Honours thesis, I spent a year with my head stuck in textbooks on “international development” (as in from the Millennium Development Goals) and talking to people who were trying to “fix” poverty. At some points it all got a little disenchanting — particularly when I realised that the concept of “development” was invented/thought up after World War II, as in sixty years ago, and we’re still trying to “fix” it.
It’s a big issue. There’s no denying that. And yeah, sometimes it seems like there’s too much to do, and that no matter how many concerts Bono organises, or how much coffee Colin Firth drenches himself in (hello), nothing much is going to change anything.
I’ve been a UNICEF Global Parent for several years, donating money to that program every month even when I was a student. When I have to give people gifts, I get them chickens or seeds or goats or small business grants from Oxfam Unwrapped (my friends get a card; people who could do with a goat get a goat). I try to only buy coffee from cafés that use fair trade beans and I try to only buy fair trade tea and chocolate, too (sometimes, but, I really feel like a Snickers; I do then try to offset that somehow…).
I also joined the Make Poverty History campaign, and when they send me emails about lobbying projects that asks me to take 2 minutes to click through and sign a petition the government about the travesty of the maternal and child mortality in developing countries, I do it. Oh, and I am hosting The World’s Largest Fondue Party (or at least, a part of it) at my place in November (SAVE THE DATE!!), which is part of the Stop The Traffick campaign to end child trafficking labour in the manufacture of our chocolate.
Yes, I know those are only little things.
Like the way I also take all my recyclables home from the office because our building doesn’t do recycling, some people might think I am an idiot because just little me doing those little things probably isn’t going to make a big impact. But you know what? I don’t care what people think about the things I do.
I have a choice. I have a choice between:
- doing those little things that might-possibly–maybe have some positive impact (no matter how small) but don’t require me to go very far out of my way at all; or
- not doing anything at all because, psh, that’s what most people are doing anyway, even if that will totally-definitely not have any impact,
My choice is, CLRLY, the first one.
And if people want to think I’m a little odd for my choice, all I want them to know is that I don’t give a shit about what they think.
And until I have time to set up a Kiva fund, or the guts to quit my job and go work somewhere like Cambodia like Laine, or the inspiration to set up a program for indigenous people in the Kimberly like Dan, I will keep doing those little things. Actually, I’ll keep doing those little things even when (that’s right, not if, when) I get around to taking the bigger steps.
There’s a list on the Blog Action Day site about the Things One Person Can Do, but if you can’t be bothered to read that, they’ve got a video too.
Watch it, yo:
I hope this post encourages people to think about the little things they can do that will be part of a bigger effort to deal with the issue of world poverty.
Look, I know that with all these talks about recession and credit crunches a lot of people have issues to deal with that are even closer to home. But that’s exactly why, right now, it is just as important to talk about poverty which has been affecting entire countries, heck continents, for decades and decades. Think about it. I guess that’s all I’m asking for. If you want to take it any further, and kinda maybe talk to me about it, my email is sunilisblog via that google internet communication thing.