Some people have such twisted views that it’s difficult to know how to deconstruct them.
Let’s cut to the chase with Mark Latham, who has declared that “anyone who chooses a life without children, as (Julia) Gillard has, cannot have much love in them”.
Mark? Shut up. And how dare you. And also, shut up.
In his latest assault on journalism, the former Labor leader takes issue with Julia Gillard’s leadership style, in his column ”Latham’s Law”, published by The Spectator Australia. Latham opines that Gillard appeared wooden when interacting with locals after the Queensland floods. He says she is ”not a particularly empathetic person – displaying, for instance, noticeable discomfort around infant children”.
OK, you think, fair enough, but then he delivers this portent of doom: ”The femocrats will not like this statement but I believe it to be true … ” And so you brace yourself. ”Anyone who chooses a life without children, as Gillard has, cannot have much love in them,” he concludes. As opposed to Latham, of course, who is known as a great spreader of love and a favourite of little children.
And this, from my wise friend, journalist and author Wendy Squires:
First he turns me from a True Believer into a True Doubter of the Labour Party and now Mark Latham has me even questioning evolution.
For a start, dinosaurs are supposed to be extinct and man is supposed to have developed somewhat cerebrally since their knuckles stopped scraping the ground but lo and behold, Mark Latham has proved this is not fact after all.
To say that as a childless woman I “cannot have much love in me” is as cruel, callous and unjust as it is sublimely ridiculous.
I can only hope that Latham doesn’t have daughters, young women who are embarking on a life where nothing is set in stone. They may marry, they may not. The may become mothers, they may not. If the latter is their fate, want
or lot, does this mean his own progeny will be unable to truly understand love? And does the fact that he managed to find someone who would willingly engage in sex with him (another miracle!) that resulted in offspring make
him a better person than I am, more benevolent, loving and empathetic?
His ludicrous, insensitive and shameful comments in regards to Julia Gillard last week render an answer redundant.
I also hope Mr Latham’s own mother is not aware of her son’s latest disgraceful comments. As someone who obviously possesses the compassion my childless state has denied me, Mrs Latham may well be wishing she had remained childless too. Her son is a disgrace to humanity.
Slither back under your rock Latham and do what your political career and reputation has already done – disappear.
Sing it sister. On behalf of every woman – and man – I know who does not have children, I would like to artfully extend my middle finger to Mark Latham for his grossly insensitive, wildly inaccurate and utterly craptastic comments.
The fact he wrote them is significant because when you write an opinion piece, you get to craft it in exactly the way you choose. You have time to think about your words. They cannot be twisted. You cannot get caught out making a spontaneous quip. You think, you write, you re-think, you edit, you send.
Mark Latham seems more than any other former politician I can think of, to have a pathological need to be involved in public life in the most destructive, base way. What he said was cruel and outrageous.
And guess what? Politicians from every political party seem to agree.
Kate Ellis, the Minister for the Status of Women: ‘The suggestion that there is some simple equation between family structures and love is absurd”.
Nationals Senator Barnaby Joyce: ”It is absurd and cruel in the extreme to think that a person who doesn’t have kids is a less deserving human being or has less of a capacity to love. I can assure you there are an abundance of people in this world without children – and for that matter with – who are caring and loving. Mark Latham appears not one of them.”
Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young: ”My child adds a totally unique dimension to my life but it doesn’t make me any more experienced or a better human being. The idea that a person doesn’t have love in their heart because they don’t have children devalues and undermines the value of what love is about.”
ABC news presenter Virginia Haussegger: ”I dare him to come and say that to my face. I’ve never smashed anyone in the face but I am ready to give it a go. They are the most idiotic comments from someone who really should keep their mouths shut.”
I don’t describe any of my friends who don’t have kids as ‘childless’. Because they are not less. Not less than me. Not less than anything. Some of them wish they could have kids. Others are fine with it. The generalisations are what hurt.
What do you think?