It was another busy news week on multiple fronts, to discuss the major stories we were joined again by the Unshackled’s Senior Editor Damien Ferri.
The Barnaby Joyce sex scandal turbocharged itself this week. Labor previously would not go near the issue however went on the attack over Joyce’s moving of his lover Vikki Campion to other MPs’ offices and the fact Joyce and Campion are now living rent free in a house owned by New England businessman Greg Maguire. The Nationals decided to stay with Joyce as leader for now even though for the reasons listed above plus the moral failing he should have gone. At the end of the week Malcolm Turnbull announced Joyce would take leave next week, announced a ban on Ministers having sex with staff and criticised Joyce’s conduct. Joyce hit back claiming Turnbull’s comments have caused further harm which has led some in the media to claim that the relationship between the Liberals and Nationals in is crisis.
The Phillip Ruddock led review into religious freedoms is currently holding private hearings and taking submissions. LGBT rights organizations want all current religious exemptions removed and want the survey’s temporary anti-vilification laws to be made permanent. They were never going to settle for just same sex marriage and their view of religious freedom is that you can hold a religious belief but just can’t practice or express it.
The annual closing the gap report on indigenous welfare was presented to parliament, again showing no signs of improvement. It was also the 10th anniversary of the Rudd Government’s apology to the so called stolen generation. Labor in their reply to the report said they wanted to legislate for an indigenous voice to Parliament instead of holding a referendum to have it in the constitution which indigenous activists had demanded. Having an indigenous advisory body which could potentially veto legislation is both racist and anti-democratic.
There was a another school shooting in the United States, this time at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. 17 were shot dead and the shooter was identified as former expelled student Nikolas Jacob Cruz who is now in custody. He had a history of mental instability, inflammatory social media posts and was reported to the FBI who abandoned the investigation, he also passed a background check. Gun control advocates are now campaigner harder in the aftermath with an anti-gun rally outside a local courthouse where survivors spoke. They are planning a school walkout on April 20 on the anniversary of the Columbine school shooting. However the real issue should be the poor management of mentally unstable people, we have the same problem in Australia as demonstrated by the Melbourne car attacks.
Mainstream Media Goes In For The Kill Against Barnaby Joyce
BREAKING NEWS: Barnaby Joyce Attacks Malcolm Turnbull
Malcolm Turnbull Overreaches Again
LGBT Equality Activists Seek Complete Removal of Religious Protection
LGBT Activists Want Survey Anti-Vilification Laws Made Permanent
Labor Promises to Legislate Indigenous Voice to Parliament Without a Referendum
FBI Received A Tip Last Month About Florida Shooting Suspect But Nothing Was Done – NPR
Post-Columbine generation demands action on guns: ‘We don’t deserve this’ – The Guardian