[Please Read With Caution As This Post Contains Mentions Of Sexual Assault]
Normally, I wouldn’t go into Australian politics because of how incredibly boring they can be. Though, I have been known to follow some of the politics in the United States mostly because I wanted to see Donald Trump fall on his face. Anyway, in the last day there has been a very serious conversation surrounding the misogynistic nature of politics in Australia. A former liberal staffer named Brittany Higgins did an interview on The Project with Lisa Wilkinson regarding her rape at the hands of a then-upcoming politician in 2019.
It has never been a secret in any form of politics that it is very much a boy’s game. Australia has only ever had one female prime minister in Julia Gillard. Her predecessors and successors have all been male. While there are women, they are often pushed to the back of the room while the men take centre stage.
While there have been women who have become game-changers in their various political fields, there is still a serious problem with the men in the same areas. Brittany Higgins’ rape took place in Parliament House by a male colleague who was a favourite of the female minister she worked under as a media advisor.
Politicians are often very well-respected and are protected alongside their party colleagues if they are involved in illegal activity. In other words, they get away with it. When a people who was in Brittany’s position at the time claims to have raped by someone with power, they are normally brushed off as if nothing has happened. This is absolutely disgusting behaviour.
People with power are not gods. Also, why would someone like Brittany who remembers every detail lie? Yes, there are those who will make up assaults just to get attention. But, not everyone is like that.
Non-Politicians Apparently Don’t Matter
According to Brittany in her interview, the female minister was apologetic but didn’t want to hear about the incident again because it made her [the minister] uncomfortable. Basically, she wasn’t a team player because she wanted to speak out about what happened to her.
Women are supposed to support each other. All the female higher ups mentioned in Brittany’s interview are cowards. They were too concerned in not just protecting the party’s interests, but in keeping their own reputations in tact.
For Brittany, she felt like she had pick between getting justice or her dream career. This should not have happened. Her alleged attacker – who has not been named in the interview – hasn’t been disciplined and is still working like nothing has happened. This type of behaviour from someone this high up in the political food chain shows how cultish and misogynistic politics can be.
The last thing a politician needs is to be slandered in front of their entire party. Brittany’s experience is harrowing as she has been made to feel like her rape was her fault when it wasn’t. She was left unsupported by her colleagues who said they would support her. They pull all their energy into making sure they won the election and not about a sexual assault survivor’s wellbeing.
Brittany Is A True Trooper
Despite her harrowing ordeal which you can watch yourself in the link above, Brittany has shown to be strong and willing to bring to light what happened to her. No person should be made to feel like they don’t matter when their more senior colleagues get off scot free.
Scott Morrison, Australia’s Prime Minister has issued an apology says news.com.au but it is two years too late. Also, he has been slammed, according to Pedestrian for using his daughters to empathise with Brittany’s situation. The alleged rapist should be disciplined for he did. But no. His career will be forever protected by an unjust political system.
This is the whole reason I hate politics. The system only ever caters for douchebag politics who want power. I know that not all people in politics are terrible human beings but abuse of power shows when no one is willing to defend a vicim of a serious crime.
Please advise that if this post has raised issues for you, please contact a mental health professional in your country.