Yesterday, the ultimate reactionary, the ultimate recalcitrant, the ultimate sook, the odious Tony Abbott, introduced the term "political correctness" into the equal marriage "debate". This is his "in an emergency break glass" line.
"If you don't like same-sex marriage, vote no; if you're worried about freedom of speech and freedom of religion, vote no; and if you don't like political correctness, vote no, because this is the best way to stop it in its tracks."
He is a devious bastard.
What he is trying to do is use this catch all negative phrase to rally Australians, who are pissed off about anything, into not supporting equal marriage. And he threw in freedom of speech and freedom of religion for good measure.
But what is political correctness?
Well, according to this ultimate sook, it is acknowledging anything in our language and deeds that is different and more modern than his warped pre-historic view of the world.
Whereas, in truth, it is simply "A right wing derogatory term for what most people would call common courtesy." [Howard Dean]
One has to wonder why the ultimate sook is so opposed to equal marriage that he introduces "political correctness"? What is it about gays getting married that so bothers him that he feels the need to break the emergency glass to get his way?
Perhaps this exchange from a 60 Minutes interview a few years ago gives us the answer:
Liz Hayes - "Homosexuality? How do you feel about that?"
Tony Abbott - "Oh....I probably feel a bit threatened (nervous laughter) .......as so many people do."
You can see that bizarre response on YouTube here
(Yes, I know, he has equivocated on this response since, but it looks a very real response to me. And remember this man was already middle-aged when he gave that interview. Unlikely he has had a Damascian conversion since then).
So, he feels threatened by homosexuality. Why?
And he believes that many people do as well. Why?
I think the answers to these questions will tell us a lot about the ultimate sook's motivation in breaking the emergency glass.