He’s been already called Australia’s Prince George.
Just days away from his second birthday, a ruffle-haired toddler named Jack has created quite a few headlines across the nation.
He made his first appearance at an important ceremony for his “Baba”, or as we know him, the 29th Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
His ructions caused a few worn-out-by-the-political-machinations-of-the-past-few-days souls to smile again when he ran to embrace the new PM just moments after Baba was anointed to the top job.
The sight and sounds of the little boy, Jack Turnbull-Brown – the only grandchild of Malcolm and Lucy Turnbull – was a refreshing change from the past few days of deposing and sniping.
He was real and raw and delicious. Some went as far as to say, freaking adorable.
But not all were as pleased.
Today some commentators are unhappy at his presence at the Prime Minister’s swearing-in saying it was an “indulgence” and that he took from the “dignity of the occasion”.
His sweet little duh duh dah-ing while the Prime Minister was reciting the words that have been recited oh so many times lately was thought to have overshadowed the important event.
His dapper little sneaker-ed feet undermining the dignity of the surrounds. His weer-ing and nnnnnn-ing a disturbance.
His baby voice singing a babbled version of the theme song of the ABC Kids Show “Peg + Cat” was “inappropriate.”
Sure, some of these commentators are just the usual naysayers and dinosaurs we should simply just ignore, but some of them were sadly re-inforcing a stereotype that we hope belongs in the history books (alongside certain deposed Prime Ministers): the attitude that children have no place in politics or business – that family life should remain clearly delineated from working life.
You know, the same attitude taken by folk who believe women should be at home caring for our future generations, the same attitudes that create a gender imbalance in pay, in politics, in life.
Here’s a thought – while we are making a clean sweep of used-by leaders and starting afresh perhaps its time this attitude was negated as well.
Perhaps our new leader Malcolm Turnbull who has, in the past, described himself as a natural egalitarian can be the one to step up and lead the way in this.
In his maiden speech Mr Turnbull alliterated a view we hope we still holds. He said that “children are a social good” that they are “not merely a private optional pleasure”.
“Australia’s children are Australia’s future. “ he said “They are our future. We must work to enhance rather than restrict Australians’ work and family choices and recognise that it is desirable for women, if they wish, to fulfil two goals: child-bearing and a career. Our society’s survival depends on making it possible and easier for them to do both.”