Bernardi: Think Of The Children! (And Not About Whether I’m A Homophobe)


He may have been turfed as Tony Abbott’s Parliamentary Secretary in 2012 for linking same sex marriage with beastiality, but Liberal backbencher Cory Bernardi is enraged that anyone might think he’s a homophobe.

It wasn’t just anyone who made that scandalous suggestion today, though. It was the leader of the opposition, Bill Shorten, who this morning came out with an actual zinger:

The background to this little ruction, of course, is that Senator Bernardi is concerned an anti-bullying program designed to build acceptance of queer kids in school is a trojan horse that will “indoctrinate kids with Marxist cultural relativism“.

It’s a communist menace. Obviously. As the inquiry Bernardi and his peers on the far right of the Liberal party have forced will surely show!

The fact that anyone might think Bernardi’s a homophobe, Bernardi said, is “a really sad indictment on the modern character of political debate”. Of course.

“What I’m critical of, Mr President, is the fact that those with a differing opinion do not engage in the merits or the facts or otherwise of the debate in a respectful and serious manner. They resort to name calling,” he said.

And besides, Bernardi said, Shorten is “shallow”, “brittle”, “hollow”,  “unhinged” and (although this one might have been a mistake) a “homophobe”.

Everyone knows the Safe Schools program is an attempt to spread the gay lifestyle. Everyone, that is, except beyondblue, the Australian Secondary Principals Association, the Australian Education Union, the Australian Council of State School Organisations, the Greens and Labor.

“…[Shorten] has called the millions of Australian parents who are concerned about what is going on in their school system [homophobes],” Bernardi declared.

“He is calling the thousands of teachers that are worried about what is being said to our children [homophobes], he is calling the psychologists and the psychiatrists and people who are commenting on the merits of this program and some of the substance in it [homophobes].”

As New Matilda revealed this morning, there’s actually good reason to think quite a lot of those people are homophobes.

And anyway, Cory, I think you’ll find Bill was calling just you a homophobe. Not your imaginary hoard of allies. For old time’s sake, here’s a video of Tony Abbott explaining why he gave ‘beastiality Bernardi’ the flick back in 2012:

Thom Mitchell is New Matilda's Environment Reporter.