Sue McLeod, Myocum
I agree that we should avoid anger and abuse in discussions of climate change, COVID protection and racism. A violent protest, for example, will only alienate the public. Yet I find it hard to commit to the extent of empathy that Benjamin Gilmour (Letters, 11 August) adheres to. Ironically, it’s my empathy that causes me to speak out.
I’ve seen, and have been told of instances in Mullum, of bystanders not daring to make a comment re lack of mask wearing or checking in. Some say, ‘It’s not our business’. In my opinion there are too many ‘quiet Australians’. It’s very tempting to ‘tune out’ but it won’t achieve any change.
Families have been heartbroken by premature loss. Our health workers, carers and other frontline workers risk their safety to protect us. Our local businesses suffer greatly if a lockdown is extended owing to further outbreaks.
Domestic violence and pedophilia were perpetuated for decades by lack of frank discussion, both private and public. Any observed racial slurs, social injustice and corruption can be easily overlooked in our society, if we fail to bring it to public discussion.
I agree with your reference to the majority of us (working class) living ‘busy, stressful lives with barely any time for deep research’, ‘just trying to survive’. I think this has been brought on by the monetary and fiscal policies of our federal government, ever since John Howard’s introduction of his middle class welfare policies.
It’s not perfect, but we are still lucky to live in a democracy. It’s the actions of the people willing to become more informed and politically active that can bring change. Ignoring what’s going on in the world won’t fix anything. And we are at such a pivotal time for our future generations.
More needs to be openly aired in our society, albeit, in a non-confrontational manner. Saying nothing for fear of offending can lead to complacency, which can, in turn, lead to complicity. For me to do or say nothing, that feels like giving up.