Banerji and the Threat to Free Speech

14/08/2019

The High Court has ruled that Michaela Banerji’s sacking from the (then) Department of Immigration and Border Protection – Home Affairs sounds much nicer for the PR – was legitimate. This ruling has (to borrow the frequently used phrase from everywhere) rather chilling effects for democracy and free speech, and also has implications for other areas as well.

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The Totally True List of Reasons for Mass Shootings

10/08/2019

We’ve heard from so many public figures and random internet personalities about what they believe the reasons for the hundreds of mass shootings this year alone are. Let’s compile a small, by no means complete, list of 100% legitimate reasons this keeps happening in one country. (I hope the sarcasm is evident here.)

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YouTube Is A Double-Edged Sword

07/08/2019

The same could be said for any online media, from news articles, to videos, to social media posts. There are outlets and people that are worthwhile taking the time to listen to, be it because they’re factually accurate or have a fresh analysis or opinion on a certain topic. But there are a number of outlets with the sole purpose of propagating lies and inaccuracies, mostly for the sake of profit. Videos, however, are a powerful way to get a message across.

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Unconscious Bias: Why Perspective Matters

04/08/2019

Everyone has some form of unconscious bias, and most of the time it’s not necessarily the fault of the person who was unaware. But many of them are, at times, damaging stereotypes, or can be hurtful or exclusionary (inadvertently or blatantly) towards whichever demographic or group it’s targeted at. Understanding perspectives other than your own – particularly those that are the opposite of your own – is incredibly important.

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Quick Quips: To Protest Is Your Right

01/08/2019

Nothing that benefitted any oppressed or supressed demographic was gained by doing nothing. Every major movement of the last century or so, from the black rights’ movement to the #MeToo movement, Union actions to revolts against autocratic governments, environmental and anti-war causes – all of these have involved some form of protest.

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Language in Journalism

17/07/2019

Language can be used for a myriad of purposes. Whether you wish to try and evoke a particular emotion from a reader/listener, persuade someone of your point of view, or just want to convey information, the language you use can be powerful. This can be done consciously or through habit, but how someone will react to what you say may well depend on the language you use. With this in mind, I turn to the media: how do they use language?

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Freedom of Speech in the Workplace

13/07/2019

I’ve spoken about free speech a few times on this site, but almost always in a general sense. Noam Chomsky, to paraphrase, says that if you don’t believe in freedom of speech for views you disagree with then you don’t believe in it at all – no matter how opposite or offensive said views might be. Consequence is another thing entirely, and the workplace is an interesting – and rather dangerous – side of this.

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Education Should Be Free

02/07/2019

Of all the industries that can be privatised for profit, war is the most despicable. That being said, while all privatisation is something that should be fought against – from public ownership of vital services to the democratisation of the workplace – I believe education is the most important field that must be kept free and in the public domain.

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Civility With ‘Enemies’ – Can It Be Done?

01/07/2019

I have not written anywhere near as much in the month of June as I would have liked. To put that in perspective, I missed a week’s worth of pieces (7) due to university, visiting friends, other commitments, and whatever other excuse I can convince myself of. While I am not displeased with the pieces I have written, it leaves much to catch up on. But I can draw from those other activities, starting with a friend’s party.

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The Wrong Propaganda Message

25/06/2019

For whatever reason, a 7 News video was suggested to me online (maybe following commercial news stations on Twitter was a mistake, now they’re running me down on Facebook). It showed some random rally of a ‘far-right’ group in Penrith, which totalled 25 people. But the video was of little interest – the comments were, however.

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