Last night I happened to catch some of the late night replay of The Project. Unsurprisingly, there was a lot of talk about Howard Sattler’s interview with Julia Gillard.
The Australian journalist Janet Albrechtsen was interviewed about the incident and about Gillard’s term more generally. She made a comment that suggested Gillard was playing the ‘gender game’.
Of course she’s playing a bloody gender game.
But the point is, she’s been forced into playing a gender game by the media, other politicians, and the public. From the outset, she has been criticised as a woman, not as a politician.
It’s a bit like parents who smack their kids to punish them for hitting another kid. I’ll smack you when I feel like, but don’t you dare think about smacking anyone yourself.
Gillard is being criticised for playing a game that she didn’t choose to play. We (the media, other politicians, you and I) don’t get to punish her for playing her part in a game we pushed her into.
If she was treated, criticised, held to account in the same way male politicians are, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.
On a related note, and following up from my post yesterday: I am bewildered by all the people I’ve encountered in the last two days who think gender disparity doesn’t exist in Australia. What the actual fuck? Are we living in the same country?
30 posts in June: 12/30