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Was "The Australian" right to publish this?

Discussion in 'Living Room' started by MarkB, 5th Aug, 2016.

  1. MarkB

    MarkB Some guy on the internet Premium Member

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    The screen you are reading.
    If you want to pout like a child or play in the sandpit and kick sand in each others faces, then please refer to the other thread (draw your own conclusions on that).

    Otoh if you're a mature adult and keen to engage in a respectful discussion - even with those you might disagree with - then welcome aboard.

    The cartoon has attracted a fair bit of (mostly negative) press in the 24 hours since it was posted.
    [​IMG]

    And some have said that The Australian should not have published it.

    It isn't the sort of cartoon I support and I don't like how an entire race has been stereotyped.

    But the bigger picture here is that we have this thing in Australia called Freedom of information, opinion and expression.
    .
    Which of course includes the freedom to rip into Bill Leak (cartoonist) and the editorial standards of The Australian.
     
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  2. WattleIdo

    WattleIdo renovating Premium Member

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    I heard about it and thought it might have been an over reaction but now I've seen it, I don't like it at all and I don't think it is worthy of being published - though I do agree with freedom of speech. I suspect The Australian is trying to do a French thing here but that's not us, different scenario.
    On the other hand, what I think has been a hush up is the degree of Aboriginal elder involvement in the treatment of the NT young men. Mind you, I haven't seen the 4 Corners show yet and stand to be corrected.
     
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  3. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Founder Staff Member

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    Funnily enough, just like some other threads :rolleyes: - I think the issue here isn't the "face value" of the cartoon so much ... it's the history behind it that is what causes the problem.

    Taken at face value, you just see a "deadbeat Dad" who doesn't even know the name of his son - which is probably one of the contributing factors as to why his son is in trouble with the cops.

    But when you look at the long history of Aboriginal people and their relationship with the police, substance abuse and other social issues being faced - there is a much deeper problem that needs to be addressed before we can make light of these things.

    As a commentary on the sad state of affairs - it could be taken as reasonable. But given the medium and the fact that these cartoons are usually intended to amuse as much as they are about comment - I think the cartoon is unhelpful and unfair.

    It doesn't help that the issues being faced by Aboriginal people are very complex and there are no easy fixes - it will require cooperation, understanding and sensitivity from all parties before real progress can be made.

    I actually think the worst part of the whole cartoon is the baton being held by the police officer.
     
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  4. Ed Barton

    Ed Barton Well-Known Member

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    What was the context in which it was posted?
     
  5. MarkB

    MarkB Some guy on the internet Premium Member

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    Just realised he (Bill Leak) has a follow up -

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Perthguy

    Perthguy Well-Known Member

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    My view is that The Australian should be allowed to publish a controversial cartoon like this. It has prompted a lot of discussion. This is important in a relatively "free" society.
     
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  7. Phase2

    Phase2 Well-Known Member

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    So would there have been the same outrage if the people depicted in the cartoon were white?

    It might not be to everyone's taste but I don't see how it stereotypes the entire aboriginal race. That sort of confirmation bias is (as always) in the eye of the beholder.

    This instance could just as easily be seen to highlight the chain of problems of abusive cops i.e. baton-wielding (and abusive detention centres), youth in detention, and the source of the problem being a broken family unit with a dead-beat dad with a substance abuse problem (tinny of VB in his hand).

    OR it could just be a cartoon to fill the pages and be forgotten about next week (as it probably will be).
     
  8. MarkB

    MarkB Some guy on the internet Premium Member

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    From the BBC.

    The cartoon comes in the wake of debate about the Northern Territory's juvenile justice system and high incarceration rates among Indigenous youth.

    It appears to be a response to comments from Indigenous leader Noel Pearson, who said this week that Aboriginal people needed to take more responsibility for the behaviour of their children.
     
  9. MTR

    MTR Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I think you pretty much nailed it.
     
  10. WattleIdo

    WattleIdo renovating Premium Member

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    The excellent movie Mystery Road says it in a much more palatable way than these cartoons.
     
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  11. Biz

    Biz Well-Known Member

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    /Leaves thread.
     
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  12. alexm

    alexm Well-Known Member

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    Perhaps Bill Leak is using another medium (i.e. pictures) to draw attention to a serious issue within the community.

    Why are there such fundamental and serious problems in the aboriginal community? Why have many risen to be role models for all and others are at the bottom of the pile?
     
  13. Perthguy

    Perthguy Well-Known Member

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    I found the message quite universal. When I saw it my mind went to some areas of Perth that would be considered "white" but where this exact thing seems to fix perfectly.
     
  14. Skilled_Migrant

    Skilled_Migrant Well-Known Member

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    Three Issues:
    1. Content: Racist and repulsive and not even funny.
    2. Newspaper's Rights: Yes, Newspaper has right to publish it.
    3. Critics Rights: Yes, Critics should be allowed full lather, to highlight all the issues of racism that the cartoon is associated with as well as the racist bias and nature of the newspaper's editorial staff and the cartoonist.
    The problem is that the privileged good folk can indulge in offensive racial discrimination in the name of freedom of speech, but the criticism is censored by the same privileged good folk who control the microphone.

    The two cartoons depict the hypocrisy in the free speech:
    • The first one is a systematic denigration of a whole race, which is classified as free speech.
    • The second cartoon depicts the classification of the critics as blood thirsty savages resorting to personal attacks against an individual (rather an ideology) who just exercised his fundamental human right to free speech
    The cartoons depict the unbalance of free speech by the biased and racist gate keepers, whose opinion and (in)action is mired in self interest in perpetuating a centuries old disadvantage and an unbalance of power because they profit from it.

    Aptly put below...on multiple levels :

     
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  15. MarkB

    MarkB Some guy on the internet Premium Member

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    This is a real tweet from a newly elected One Nation Senator -

    Rod Culleton‏@SenatorRod

    loved that Bill Leak cartoon today! I have many Aboriginal friends and they always seem to be forgetting important things! #auspol
     
  16. Skilled_Migrant

    Skilled_Migrant Well-Known Member

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  17. MarkB

    MarkB Some guy on the internet Premium Member

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    Oh and this -

    [​IMG]
     
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  18. lewy89

    lewy89 Well-Known Member

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    It's been posted here before but what reaction would there be if the people depicted in the cartoon were white?

    I don't think it was a particularly smart move to publish that particular cartoon, but it's just a cartoon..... Why does society tend to dig so deeply into every single thing nowadays?

    The cartoon picturing Australia at the opening ceremony into Rio depicts our entire country as something far worse than the original cartoon which kick started this debate, yet I am almost certain it will kick off much less of a stink... Go figure
     
  19. willair

    willair Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    To learn who rules over you,simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize..
    "Voltaire"
     
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  20. Perthguy

    Perthguy Well-Known Member

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    Generations of people who have grown up never knowing hardship. If we were in the middle of a deep recession, like in the early 1990's Australia, do you think we would be publishing articles about how offensive it is to refer to a group of people at work "guys"? (1) We have had it so good for so long we have become complacent.

    Then you have the ambit claim that criticism [of the cartoon] is censored. In reality, the criticism has been openly published in mainstream media outlets. Example: Indigenous Affairs Minister Nigel Scullion condemns 'racist' Bill Leak cartoon

    Greens' leader Richard di Natale called the cartoon "disgraceful" and harked back to the worst days of the White Australia policy.​

    Race Discrimination Commissioner Dr Tim Soutphommasane told Fairfax Media: "Our society shouldn't endorse racial stereotyping of Aboriginal Australians or any other racial or ethnic group."​

    The cartoon was "deliberately chosen to insult Aboriginal people", according to Professor Muriel Bamblett, AM, the chief executive of the Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency Co-Operative.

    "It is disheartening in the extreme to have such a cartoon published on National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children's Day when we are celebrating the achievements of our children," she said.

    "It demeans Aboriginal men and portrays all Aboriginal people in a poor light based on nothing more than prejudice and stereotype."

    "Twenty-five years on and some sections of the Australian media are regressing ... The Australian's decision to publish a racist cartoonist's racist work is a provocative and hateful act that adds nothing to community knowledge and discussion and deserves to be condemned for the damage it does to Aboriginal/non-Aboriginal relations."​

    A mainstream media outlet publishing these comments is not what censorship looks like.

    (1) The Diversity Council of Australia wants us to stop saying ‘Hey guys’ at work
     
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