Peter Dutton’s hypocrisy hits a new low

Given the government’s treatment of women and refugees, Peter Dutton’s comments in the Sydney Morning Herald are pure hypocrisy, writes Hayden O’Connor.

*CONTENT DISCLAIMER: This article is about rape

ON JANUARY 10, Defense Minister and House Leader Peter Dutton told the Sydney Morning Herald and age that he found it “Pretty remarkable” that sports stars and celebrities did not use their status to criticize China’s human rights abuses and its treatment of women.

If Peter Dutton wasn’t a minister in a government that kept refugees in detention for nine years and his workplace in Parliament didn’t have a third of its staff sexually harassed, then his criticism of the stars of the sports and celebrities would not be so difficult to digest.

But as the man who described Brittany Higgins’ rape complaint as “he said she said”, Peter Dutton is just an opportunistic hypocrite.

In the exclusive article (which deliberately omits mention of this government’s despicable treatment of women), Dutton was quoted telling the Sydney Morning Herald and age what follows:

“I don’t understand how, in 2021, in the #MeToo era, we can have an international women’s tennis star who claims to have been raped and sexually assaulted and she is now effectively under house arrest and has had her account on the networks socials wiped out, and somehow that’s behavior we should tolerate.

Looking at the treatment of women in Australia last year, it might be hard to understand how in 2021, in the #MeToo era, we can have a woman claiming to have been raped in Parliament and the answer of the government was thorough against his partner and inform the March4Justice protesters that they were lucky not to be hit by bullets.

It could also be hard to understand how the rape allegation against incumbent Christian Porter did not result in a parliamentary inquiry. Why didn’t Dutton speak on those occasions?

Dutton is of course right that China’s reaction to Peng Shuai’s allegations should not be tolerated, but that is beside the point. When you are in a position of power and you can do something to help women, but you refuse to act and speak like Dutton and his government did, then you have no right to criticize others.

This government refused to implement all of Kate Jenkins’ recommendations Respect@Work report and two members of this government have taken to suing women who criticize them. Dutton didn’t speak either, though he may have been busy with his own legal action.

On human rights, Peter Dutton accused the Biloela family of “use all the tricks in the book” to avoid deportation and he also claimed that showing compassion to the Bioela family would send a “bad message” to smugglers.

#3 TOP STORY OF 2021: Cabinet minister's alleged rape deflected by Morrison government

Dutton also said in the Sydney Morning Herald item:

“We would not, and we would never tolerate, the suggestion that if someone had been raped, it was not going to be dealt with.”

Yet we are only a day away from a full year since Brittany Higgins claimed she was raped in Parliament and we have yet to see Phil Gaetjens’ report on who in Prime Minister Scott’s office Morrison, was aware of the incident and when. Gaetjens’ investigation was suspended for a second time at the end of August last year.

Thus, it would seem that Peter Dutton actually tolerates that a complaint of rape is not treated. Or maybe he just thinks his “he said she said” remark has appropriately addressed the issue. Maybe he thinks that’s all a rape complaint requires. This would not be surprising given that he accused rape victims detained in Nauru of “try it” so they can enter Australia for an abortion.

Peter Dutton has neither the right nor the authority to criticize others for not acting and speaking out on the treatment of women or on human rights issues, given his own background and the track record of the government whose it is part – even when this criticism (of China) is obviously justified.

If we see a new and improved Peter Dutton, then he will surely start speaking out and speaking out against his own government very soon. Until then, I’m going to assume that his comments regarding China are nothing more than opportunistic political tactics designed to make China the new enemy so that this government can beat the drums of war as we head towards an election. in May.

So, Peter Dutton, are you going to speak?

If you would like to speak to someone about sexual violence, please call the 1800 Respect hotline on 1800 737 732 or chatting on the internet.

Hayden O’Connor is an IT professional from Tasmania who currently lives in Melbourne. You can follow Hayden on Twitter @HaydenJOConnor.

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