Written By: - Date published: 11:51 am, December 20th, 2015 - 210 comments
Categories: articles, john key, Media, Minister for International Embarrassment, national, newspapers, sexism - Tags: mike hosking, paul henry, rachel stewart
Rachel Stewart is a tough uncompromising columnist for the Taranaki Daily News. Rachel is not someone to hold back. Her previous criticisms of the farming industry were met with death threats. Her recent critique of the post John Campbell media is a must read. And her analysis of Amy Adams landholding and issues of possible conflict were met with legal threats.
If you want a flavour of her writing her website is here.
On farming issues she speaks from experience. She was previously a farmer and was even a regional president of Federated Farmers.
Her latest column eviscerates John Key’s habit of preferring shock jock right wing media to the more challenging and demanding job of fronting up to interviewers who will actually ask him questions. Weekly appearances at the likes of radio station The Rock or being interviewed by his BFF Paul Henry and Mike Hosking are preferred to very occasional appearances at more challenging interviews such as those at Radio New Zealand.
She starts off by reviewing things that Key has talked about and done and describes John Key as an “equal opportunity creep”. She then states:
Last week’s radio appearance on The Rock was just another in a series of rude, crude and highly unattractive stunts by Key.
Our PM seems to actively avoid being interviewed on RNZ – I mean they might actually ask him something hard – but actively courts the bowels of radio by chafing at the bit to be on trash like The Rock.
Somehow, I strongly suspect that if you’re a The Rock listener you’re not reading this column. Thank you Jesus!
But if by chance you are, or you know someone who does, consider this an intervention.
Darling, you need help. There’s no polite way to say this but, there it is. You are sexist, racist, homophobic and seriously mentally deficient. You find rape jokes funny and love that our country’s leader does too.
She then talks about modern New Zealand and how things are deteriorating for women.
As one of many women with a brain living in New Zealand in 2015, I speak from the heart when I say we are not having a great time right now.
It feels like we’re living in a Boy’s Own Annual. There is a male culture so toxic and all-persuasive that we feel stifled and need to come up for air.
Of course, it is aided and abetted from the top (Key) and trickling down (the only genuine trickle down we’ve seen) and it’s giving every male within cooee tacit permission to swagger and strut and wear their bigotry like a badge of honour.
It’s like every awful passing thought they’ve ever had about women or gays or rape is now able to be spewed forth like a kaleidoscope of hatred-coloured vomit.
Coupled with all of this is a Government that has massively cut funding to Rape Crisis, and attempted to silence women parliamentarians when they spoke out about their own sexual assault experiences.
Predictably the spin from Key’s minders is that “it’s Christmas” (what the hell that has to do with it I do not know) and there’s something wrong with us because we can’t take a joke.
So, it’s all women’s fault again. You know the drill.
She finishes off by saying this:
Call me old-fashioned but the title of Prime Minister should mean something. Jumping in a cage and picking up a bar of soap in a nod to prison rape doesn’t really factor into that.
Nor does three-way handshakes, the “gay red top”, mincing down the catwalk, or planking.
The only consolation I feel is that I’m far from alone in feeling embarrassed to say I’m a New Zealander right now.
The list of shame is so long – climate change inaction, the flag debacle, domestic violence, child poverty – to name a few.
Add to the mix a Prime Minster who thinks it’s a hoot to make fun of rape, is unapologetic, and blames everyone else for not “getting it” and I think you can see why many of us are collectively cringing.
I suspect she is now off John Key’s christmas card list. If she was ever on it.