Julia Gillard was the first female PM in Australia’s history, sparking up a debate between communities, young and old alike whether she was fit for the job or not. Was Australia really ready for women in charge? Or did we need a man to bring home the bacon while the wives took care of the kids? Gillard was able to face the music, and in 2012, she gave a speech we now regard as a classic–the infamous misogyny speech. This speech went viral in a matter of moments and sent blogs and news around the world into a spin with everyone taking notice.
Some call this speech an attack on Abbott, saying he didn’t deserve it and it was an embarrassing and serious allegation. Others say that it was just and everything needed to be said. I believe that it was appropriate, and I’m proud of Julia taking a stand and confronting the government the way she did.
Julia explained why she aggressively attacked the topic head on, saying that she was sick of all of the sexist comments she received and needed to do something about it. She stated that it was driven by an emotional need, and she she said whatever she felt was necessary to bring an end to the endless sexist jokes.
“The Leader of the Opposition says that people who hold sexist views and who are misogynists are not appropriate for high office. Well I hope the Leader of the Opposition has got a piece of paper and he is writing out his resignation. Because if he wants to know what misogyny looks like in modern Australia, he doesn’t need a motion in the House of Representatives, he needs a mirror”
– Julia Gillard’s misogyny speech
I personally believe that sexism still exists. If a joke can be taken out of context and appears to be some sort of attack on women or men, then yes, that is sexism and it’s not okay. It is 2014, we should be ready for a change. Australia, the world as a whole, should be ready to stand up and fight for what’s right. I’m not saying “free speech” or “no wars!” but we should be able to move forward from oppressing women and men in certain situations. Men should be able to stay home and take care of the kids if that’s what they feel like they should do, and women should be able to walk the streets in a pretty dress and not be sexually harassed. Until the world is able to treat everyone equally, or at least try, we’ll forever be stuck in this place.