Much like David Bowie, Prince’s death this week has seen an outpouring of emotional tributes from all over the world. News broadcasts have been dominated by even the tiniest of details of the story, while social media has been saturated with personal tributes to the performer.
If Brooke Cotchin wants to make a social media post of love and support for her embattled husband good on her. I am sure it would have been profoundly meaningful to the man it was intended for and I am surprised anyone else thought it worthy of commenting on, let alone criticising. But that is the price you pay when you choose to make a statement on social media- it is no longer private and you are inviting anyone that wants to make comment to do so.
Have been a massive fan of Steven fry in the past. Both his excellent comedy and his political observations. So I was amazed and aghast to see the clickbait-sounding article quoting him as telling victims of abuse to, “Get over it.”
Unsurprisingly, many have been quick to lambast him for what they see as victim bashing. And I have absolutely no problem with people drawing that conclusion IF they have seen the full interview or read the full transcript. Unfortunately many people will have drawn a strong opinion about Fry’s words just from reading the headline or being told about it. This is similar to the reaction to Adam Goodes’ Australia Day speech and underlines the importance of thinking for ourselves and checking things we hear that don’t sound right.
After my read back of the full transcript, I felt Fry to be anything but callous to the hurt and trauma suffered by victims of abuse. What he seemed to be doing was highlighting a behavioural pattern that he feels is more destructive and insidious than people realise. However that doesn't mean it wasn't a poor choice of words for a man of Fry’s intelligence and vocabulary.
I have said previously that the intent behind words or actions count for little when they have significant effects on others and Fry’s words certainly generated outrage from victims groups in many parts of the world. He cannot undo the offence and hurt he caused by clarifying his position. However there is little he can do to fix undo that. He now must live the fact that his words would have been felt as hurtful by many.
I don’t deny that there are certain disadvantages that come from living in this wonderful state, but I think it is important that we don’t start getting too wrapped up in the unfairness of it all. There is a danger in letting our sense of entitlement get in the way of reality.
So while we pay more for certain commodities down here and most vocations earn comparatively lower than their mainland equivalents, we also have cheaper housing, beautiful surroundings and lifestyle opportunities that most people would kill for.
So I have seen a lot of strong opinions expressed on social media recently about the case of Ben Batterham being charged for the death of Ricky Slater-Dickson.
On the face of it, I can understand the logic behind some of the strident objections to a home owner facing any charges for, “…defending his property,” as most of his supporters describe it. However there are a few complicating factors (including two distraught families) that make this case a little less black and white for my part.