Is it ever okay to heckle the Prime Minister?
Of course it is.
In a country like Australia, we have the right to make our voices heard in the democratic process and we are free to say when our leaders make decisions we disagree with.
But is it okay to heckle the Prime Minister as he walks into a memorial?
Well, mourners who gathered outside of Sydney’s Town Hall yesterday for Gough Whitlam’s memorial service certainly think so.
Yesterday’s state memorial made headlines for a lot of wonderful reasons.
Noel Pearson’s speech was immediately lauded for being one of the greatest of our times; Whitlam’s son Tony joked as he fondly recalled campaigning with his father and actress Cate Blanchett said she would remain forever grateful for the free education she received as a result of changes spearheaded by the Whitlam government.
But one detail from the Sydney Town Hall memorial service drew attention for less favourable reasons: the moment when Prime Minister Tony Abbott entered the service and received a frosty reception.