Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Keep Your Religion Off My Human Rights

If I said this already, sorry. If not, this is what I think about Israel Folau's beliefs on same sex attraction.

Elizabeth Farelly is wrong about Israel Folau and society is right to be outraged by his beliefs. He is wrong because he would deny a whole section of our society their human right to love and marry each other, under threat of eternal damnation.

She says that cricketers '... get well over a million bucks a year just to play, plus potentially a third of that again in bonuses. So covertly breaking the rules for unfair advantage is no different, morally, from insider-trading or slipping coal licenses to your mates. No different from electoral fraud.
Those are things people get jailed for. Yet if it’s cricket, somehow, you just have a little cry on telly and all is forgiven. Of course, the pressure. Poor you. Cheat as much as you like. ' Well that could be true and if so then there should be much stronger consequences for cheaters in sport. 

But she also says, ' None of that sympathy was on offer for Israel Folau. No gleeful parsing of rules, splitting of hairs. “Israel Folau has failed as a role model”, blared the ABC. Why? Because his sin is a personal conviction which, although entirely separate from his job, could destroy it.'

Is Elizabeth Farelly for real?

So it's perfectly feasible for people to believe that:

Polygamy is good ( Might be for men but definitely not for women! )

Pedophilia is OK,

Women should be stoned if they commit adultery ( Even though it takes 2 to tango ),

A person should have a hand cut off for stealing,

Lepers are unclean and should stay a long way from the city, in caves.

Parents should arrange the marriages of their children,

Little girls should be 'circumcised'

It's good to marry your first cousins but not second cousins

Santa Clause is real

It's OK to destroy creation because all those who believe in Jesus will be spirited up to Heaven when the time is right

The devil has horns and a tail and lives in all those countries we don't like or in those religions we don't like

Anyway...on and on ad nauseam.

It is possible to change your beliefs and sometimes it may even be crucial that you do. This is one of those times.

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Anonymous pea brain.

Someone put a little book called 'The Shorter Catechism with scripture proofs' in my letter box today. Some cowardly, anonymous, silly pea brain is trying to tell me something.

Hey anonymous pea brain! I grew up in a devout Catholic family, went to Catholic school and loved the nuns,( not so much the priests) , won religion prizes, considered becoming a nun, studied the Counter Reformation and Comparative Religions and Religious Experience at Uni and went to Catholic Teachers College with George Pell as my principal.

Then I taught in Catholic schools, brought my 2 children up Catholic and went to Mass every Sunday and more for 58 years. I loved the Church....while being a feminist, environmentalist and human rights activist because that's how my Church and faith formed me. It's what my faith taught me to be. But then the Church shifted the goal posts...again.

I didn't turn on the Church. The Church went through a number of phases...The most important one for me being the post Vat 2 ecumenical stage which formed my perception of faith. After that the Church performed a huge, cataclysmic knee jerk, among other things.

So take your bone ignorant, uneducated, antiquated, sexist, sad and limited beliefs and take a long walk off a short pier. AND may God in Her mercy bless your little pea brain.

Friday, 12 January 2018

El Salvador Trumps the President

Even though the report is hearsay, one can imagine that Donald Trump would have called El Salvador and other countries shit holes.

Again, Trump's ignorant, inarticulate rant spurs me on to wax lyrical on education, information, compassion and care.

There has been a lot of hard work done in El Salvador since the terrible civil war of 1980-1992 but there is still a way to go.

That was when the Catholic Church in South America became divided over Liberation Theology as supported  by the saint and martyr Oscar Romero and those Catholic clergy conservatives who supported the military dictatorship. Needless to say the Vatican eventually supported the dictatorship. Now they say they were trying to avoid war...Pffft. The Church has always been wary of the left and still is.

The war was disruptive and catastrophic for El Salvador, with many thousands of perceived dissidents being dragged out of their beds at night, tortured and murdered. The dictatorial regime destroyed El Salvador's beautiful environment, trying to rid the country of rebels by burning all the land, travelling the country destroying people's farms and the jungle and planting land mines EVERYWHERE.

Here is a satellite image of what such an event looks like.

An El Salvadorian man, Juan Rojas, escaped that war and came Australia to study permaculture in the 80's in order to help rebuild his country when the war ended. After the war, he returned home and slowly helped to rid the land of mines and travelled throughout the countryside helping communities of traumatised farmers restore their ruined land.

I have nothing but admiration for those wonderful people who lost everything,including their families but found the strength to begin to rebuild under such very difficult circumstances.

Juan was the bravest of men and inspired me to become involved in politics.

We had a different kind of slash and burn policy here in Australia that involved ripping out all the trees and poisoning the land. Thankfully now there are good people in Australia and worldwide who have started a movement to restore/regenerate food land as well as trying to restore indigenous landscapes.

Shitful things happened in El Salvador but the people and the country are further from being a shit hole than the USA or even Australia! Bad things often happen to good people and there but for the grace of God go we.....

Which is why I try to encourage everyone to vote GREEN!

Haiti and the African Nations are in the same situation. Many African Americans are now relocating to Africa, largely Ghana and the people of Haiti have survived many disasters. WE must have compassion for and help each other or there is no hope for any of us.

Sunday, 3 December 2017

Warrnambool plastic spill: ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTER.

So, WHO IS ULTIMATELY RESPONSIBLE for environmental disasters? Who says environmental disasters aren't political?

Yep. This page was set up as an early response by some members of our local community to a spill of probably billions of little plastic beads used in the production of plastic  utensils. The page is great for raising awareness and for seeking help to clean up the spill of nurdles on South West Victorian beaches.

AND due to this page via  Colleen Hughson and the resulting big hearted community response and the consequent news items in the Standard and on TV, the EPA has escalated the spill of nurdles from Warrnambool’s Sewage Treatment Plant to a Class 2 Emergency under Victoria’s Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley. It's an environmental disaster and it would have been much worse without the quick response of a number of local people.

I get into trouble all the time because 'they' say I make these issues political. But it isn't me making them political. THEY ARE POLITICAL!

Some evil bastard company dumped God knows how many of these pollutants into the sewage system and Wannon Water's systems were unable to filter them out. So, they were washed out to sea where many still remain in the currents being carried far away to other beaches or dissolved into a toxic sludge or being eaten by creatures, (they turn into a toxic sludge in rock pools too) but it's assumed that most have been washed onto our beaches along the coast from Peterborough to Yambuck, just passed Port Fairy. Here's a picture of some nurdles and other plastic debris collected from Warrnambool's Shelly Beach.

So let's analyse this ENVIRONMENTAL CRIME SCENE.

The EVIL BASTARD who threw away God knows how many truck fulls of nurdles ( little non-biodegradable, plastic beads used in the manufacture of drink bottles and any other plastic thing that has been tossed away and now covers the earth from pole to pole, in the oceans, rivers, grasslands, farms, mountains ) may never be found. How do you trace such an act? And, if it can't be traced then how can it be controlled?…/…/illegal_dumping

Wannon Water pleads innocence and initially denied the beads came from their waste water treatment plant. It was only after the public response that Wannon Water took the situation seriously and admitted that the beads had passed through their filter systems. Now, they're acting holier than thou and cooperating with the authorities. BIG DEAL!…/sewag…/nurdles-response.aspx

DELWP Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning have a, as in ONE, machine that rakes the beach, sifting the sand for nurdles. ONE machine...not huge....not even BIG. ( Hope it doesn't kill any endangered species know...the Hooded Plovers )

Here's a photo of Warrnambool City Councillor, Warrnambool Surf Life Saving Club captain and my hard working husband, David Owen, collecting nurdles from Warrnambool beach near the Surf Club.

The local community response to this State Environmental Emergency has been astounding because SOME Warrnambool people are generally good people who actually care about our environment. Without them, who knows how long it would have taken the authorities to pay attention.

So WHO IS ULTIMATELY RESPONSIBLE for such disasters? The answer lies in the question, why ARE billions of tonnes of nurdles produced each year and why oh why, did some company employees ( one presumes it was a manufacturer ) have so many in EXCESS that they broke the law by dumping them in our sewage?

Logic tells us that the answer is very simple. Manufacturing and chemical companies produce billions of tonnes of these un-biodegradable, fossil fuel sourced and dirty, fossil fuel energy manufactured nurdles, simply because... THEY CAN!

Not one government in the world has banned single use, non-biodegradable plastic. So who is at fault? It's the GOVERNMENT stupid!

And you wonder why I campaign for the Greens?

And the Weekly Times reported it but got a number of things WRONG.

The following comment was submitted by John Drake but not published:

The article is misleading on a number of key points. The vast majority of people on the beaches cleaning up this environmental disaster were not and are not organised by Wannon Water. There is no link at all. They are not Wannon Water's teams but community volunteers and school children who responded to the crisis after a member of the public spotted the contaminants on a beach near the sewage outfall about three days after the spill began. The volunteers were on the beaches for over a week before Wannon Water got involved with the cleanup. It has taken nearly two weeks for authorities to declare this emergency, despite being alerted by representatives of community groups and environmental agencies. The mechanical beach cleaner is of limited use and utterly impractical on the most contaminated beaches. This is apparently the first incident of its kind on the Australian coast, so we all have a lot to learn, mistakes have been and will continue to be made, and we must work together. But lets be clear about one thing; the community led the initial cleanup response with no effective support from Wannon Water and continues to lead the on-ground response.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Ignore this ignorant rant.

This group is anonymous and bone ignorant!


 I welcome intelligent and informed criticism of the Church but this is balderdash. Catholics call those books 'deuterocanonicals' ( meaning 'belonging to the second canon') and they are the books and passages of the Christian Old Testament that are not part of the Hebrew Bible. The books included in the Hebrew Bible are referred to as 'protocanonicals'.

My Catholic Bibles always included them placing them between the Old and New Testament. They are seen as an interesting historical addition but not absolutely necessary from a spiritual perspective. 


Protestant Churches, on the other hand, refer to them solely as 'apochrypha' and some don't include them in the Bible at all!

From Wikipedia: Apocrypha are works, usually written, of unknown authorship or of doubtful origin.[1] Biblical apocrypha is a set of texts included in the Latin Vulgate and Septuagint but not in the Hebrew Bible. While Catholic tradition considers the texts to be deuterocanonical, Protestants consider them apocryphal. Thus, Protestant bibles do not include the books within the Old Testament but have often included them in a separate section. Other non-canonical apocryphal texts are generally called pseudepigrapha, a term that means "false writings".[2]

The word's origin is the Medieval Latin adjective apocryphus, "secret, or non-canonical", from the Greek adjective ἀπόκρυφος (apokryphos), "obscure", from the verb ἀποκρύπτειν (apokryptein), "to hide away".[3]

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Stop oil drilling in the Great Australian Bight!

#MalcolmTurnbull. Please Mr Turnbull, ban gas and oil exploration in the Great Australian Bight. 
Apart from it being a place of enormous environmental significance and being extremely important to most Australians, and the fact that fossils fuels should be and are fast becoming a thing of the past...apart from all of that...I believe that you are a good man who knows that it would be the wrong thing to do. 
So please Mr. Turnbull, do the right thing, not the most expedient thing, nor the most power grabbing thing. Put the long term good of all Australians and our precious environment first...before your career, before party politics.
C'mon Malcom. We know you can do this good thing.
 To: Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull

Dear Prime Minister,

I am extremely concerned that your government may allow oil companies to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight.

The Great Australian Bight is a pristine marine environment that supports 36 species of whales and dolphins. It sustains one of the world’s most important nurseries for the endangered southern right whale, as well as important industries like fishing and tourism. These would all be put at unacceptable risk by oil exploration.

The waters of the Great Australian Bight are deep, rough and remote. Drilling for oil here is risky and irresponsible.

Independent oil spill modelling has shown almost all of Australia’s southern coast could be at risk from an oil spill in the Bight.

Searching for new oil reserves in the Bight runs directly counter to the urgent need to stop burning oil, coal and gas to prevent catastrophic climate change. It is inconsistent with the Paris Climate Agreement goals your government signed to protect our climate.

The Great Australian Bight is the wrong place to drill for oil. And this is the wrong time in history to allow oil companies to look for more of it.

Prime Minister, I call on you to ban oil and gas development in the Great Australian Bight now and into the future.

Lisa Owen

Thursday, 29 June 2017

About refugees....

My interest was tinged with frustration when I saw the message of last weekend's workshop, the Right Track run by the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, was 'changing the minds of voters'. I've been trying to do exactly that for years and bloomin' years. 

Sometimes I wonder if voters actually know the policies of the parties they vote into government.  If everyone who professes to believe in a fair go for refugees, a decent and accessible health system, a healthy and sustainable environment, a fair and effective education system,  workable public transport,  better roads and equal marriage rights, actually voted FOR those things and not for the Parties that are AGAINST them,  then I believe a Party the colour of forests would be in government and all those issues would be solved.

Being free to vote for our government is a great privilege hard won by many brave people. With such privilege comes responsibility.  Voters  have an obligation to educate themselves about  the issues, to read the policies of all the Parties and then, for the sake of everyone especially our  young ones, to do the right thing.