politics

"It's 2018 for heaven's sake." Sarah Hanson-Young responds to offensive image of her body.

Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young has passionately called-out an Australian website for blatant sexism after it published an article featuring a cropped photo of her cleavage.

As reported by News.com, the bizarrely-dated opinion article, centred around a letter from a reader about her fashion choices, was titled “Sarah Hanson-Young’s credibility gap”.

It appeared on the Australian Spectator website accompanied by a photo of her chest with her face cropped out.

The piece was published yesterday but has since been removed from the website. Senator Hanson-Young told news.com.au it was “juvenile and pathetic”, referencing the #MeToo movement she is championing within Australian politics, and highlighting the rampant, constant mistreatment of women in parliament.

“It’s 2018 for heaven’s sake,” she said. “The suggestion that a woman’s opinion is not valid because of the way she dresses is as out of touch as it is offensive.

“Australian politics is having its #MeToo moment and it can’t come soon enough. Women on all sides of politics are standing up for ourselves and parliament will be better for it.”

Richard Di Natale calls for rules to stop sexism in Parliament. Post continues after video…

The letter, which included excerpts such as “you don’t win a debate with your boobs hanging out,” criticised the Senator over her outfit choices, questioning how she could be expected to be “taken seriously”.

“Watching Question Time and ABC analysis and wanting to pull my eyes out. If SHY wants to be taken seriously why is she wearing a dress in the Senate that looks like she’s on her way to a Christmas party?” it read.

“Any woman with anything upstairs knows you don’t win a debate with your boobs hanging out.”

The article rightly caused uproar on Twitter, with a number of high-profile Australian women jumping to Senator Hanson-Young’s defence.

“The 1950s called & want their values back,” Former deputy Greens leader Larissa Waters posted, while political journalist Julia Baird called it “absolutely disgusting”.

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The letter was a response to Senator Hanson-Young’s bold criticism of a deep-running culture within Australian politics whereby conservative male senators “slut-shame” and bully female politicians earlier this week. Following her inspiring speech, she tweeted that she “won’t sit by and be a punching bag for these bully boys any longer”.

Addressing Senator O’Sullivan and conservative independents Fraser Anning, Cory Bernardi and David Leyonhjelm directly, she said: “You are not fit to be in this chamber. You are not fit to call yourselves men.

“Real men don’t insult and threaten women,” she continued.

“They don’t slut-shame them. They don’t attack them and make them feel bullied in their workplace.”

Her comments were off the back of Nationals Senator Barry O’Sullivan saying there was a “bit of Nick Xenophon” in her.

“He’s an absolute pig. He should be booted out. He’s a disgrace,” Greens leader Mr Di Natale said at the time. “You grub,” he called out at Senator O’Sullivan.

The Spectator article and comments from fellow senators this week are unfortunately not the first time Senator Hanson-Young has been subjected to sexism in parliament, either. In June, Liberal Democrats Senator David Leyonhjelm told Senator Hanson-Young to “stop shagging men” in parliament, sparking a bitter argument which has led to an ongoing civil court case.

One Nation leader Pauline Hanson also described Senator Hanson-Young as a “great actress”, adding that she could not see the misogynistic inferences in Senator O’Sullivan’s comments.

“Using this sexist tag because she’s a female doesn’t wash with me and a lot of other people,” she said.

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