When Alan Jones suggested that “women in Australia were ‘destroying the joint’” I don’t think anyone could have predicted what would happen next.
There have been heated arguments about freedom of speech. Discussions about sponsors and their responsibility for the brands they associate themselves with. I have read comment after comment on Facebook and Twitter from people I know and people I would like to know about rights and wrongs of commentary in society. ‘Destroy The Joint’ grew from a one off hashtag comment to a 14,000+ following on Twitter as men and women voiced the change that is needed in society. Social media accelerated the speed with which we were able to read Anne Summers 2012 Human Rights and Social Justice Lecture on ‘Her Rights at Work. The Political Persecution of Australia’s First Female Prime Minister.’
Being a change-maker is risky business. You have to zig while others zag. It takes a level of courage to be different, to challenge the traditional or the “it’s always been like that”. It takes an inner confidence and belief to be a non-conformist, to have a viewpoint contradictory to the expected.
What has been inspiring over the last few weeks is that people have come together – not just behind closed doors or in hushed conversations but speaking out loud, having the strength and courage to voice their opinion.
The energy of change is exciting. The energy of collaboration infectious. Individuals taking a stand, being prepared to say ‘it stops with me’ and ‘enough is enough’.
In the Herald Sun on 1st September journalist Wendy Tuohy finished her article quoting a Twitter from @cyenne40: “Whatever my daughters choose to do with their lives, I just hope they find time to #destroythejoint #prouddad”.
This is exactly what we want – boys and girls, men and women – to be able to achieve their dreams no matter what their gender.
To quote Vera Nazarian:
“Yawns are not the only infectious things out there besides germs. Giggles can spread from person to person. So can blushing. But maybe the most powerful infectious thing is the act of speaking the truth.”