A vote for the plebs

  • By Vickie Janson
  • 06 Sep, 2016

 Upstart Live chats with Vickie about the plebiscite and same-sex marriage 

Last week I had the privilege of joining La Trobe University’s Upstart Live program to discuss the proposed plebiscite and the ‘No Change’ position to the current Marriage Act.

At the commencement of the interview there was a bit of confusion over election results. So just to clarify it appears this was an honest misunderstanding of the voting system. Kurt opted to quote the ‘below the line’ vote for me (2,843) rather than the group total of primary votes which was 34,763 . It was understood by supporters that a vote above the line for Australian Christians (AC) was a vote for me and this is how we encouraged AC supporters to vote. I’m sure there was no desire on behalf of anyone to misrepresent the stats and a polite and profitable discussion ensued. I trust this will encourage more people to start this much needed conversation.

Vickie Janson Blog

By Vickie Janson 18 Sep, 2017

Last night while the Q&A panel were addressing the topic of same-sex marriage, Senator Wong called Michael Sukkar MP ‘shameful’ for raising the concern of Safe Schools; the very tool proponents of same-sex marriage launched to usher in the social change they seek.

 

As Senator Wong addressed the Victorian 2014 Safe Schools Coalition First National Symposium to launch the social change program, she would know the connection between marriage and Safe Schools was made very clear by  the'Yes' advocates.

 

A marketing slogan was used at the launch,  ‘From little things, big things grow’ and the founder of the program Roz Ward then put Safe Schools in the context of the bigger global issue of ‘marriage equality.’  It was said this particular cultural change was too big for them right now. To quote Ward: ‘safe schools is an easier target and at a local level…globally it’s too big.’

 

This made clear to me, as an observer in the audience, that the end game of ‘Safe Schools’ was always so-called ‘marriage equality.’ And the method of achieving this was through many incremental cultural changes at the local level in schools. This is clearly using children as political activists to redefine words and their meanings to bring about the cultural change desired.


What is actually shameful is that Senator Wong is well aware of the activity in schools, and the connection of the school program to the marriage debate. It is shameful the she attempts to shame into silence the few politicians brave enough to represent the genuine concerns of parents about the broader consequences. 

 

By Vickie Janson 24 Aug, 2017

Due to safety concerns, the name of the subject of this article has been concealed. She will be referred to as Mrs Y. Having been a victim of socialist oppression in her country of birth, she asks ‘why are we seeing this here?’

Mrs Y came to Australia with her parents in 1983. Her parents were foundational leaders of the Polish political party Solidarity, which in the face of communism was formed to fight for freedom and democracy. The Australian government sponsored her family as Political Refugees.

Mrs Y knows firsthand the impact of Communism in Poland after the Second World War. As a citizen, she experienced the oppression and the introduction of Martial law with its suppression of core freedoms.  Freedom of thought and speech, education, and religion were crimes against the state.

Her experience is chilling. The communist way of life not only led to children’s camps and mass brain washing but survival itself. Food, clothing and other essential items were rationed according to a coupon system. For example,  a family was only permitted to consume 1.5kg of red meat per month. In winters of -20 degrees, Mrs Y recalls standing in long queues for up to 36 hours for the basics: milk, bread, and thinks like toilet paper.

All schools were government run and military conduct was part of the curriculum, even for 9 year olds. Mrs Y was threatened that if she went to church there would be severe consequences for her family. As a child, Mrs Y lived with fear for simply holding a Christian worldview. This wasn’t a phobia, but a realistic fear.

The Solidarity party and the Catholic Church stood strongly opposed to the tyranny of Communism and their stance was a catalyst to the introduction of Martial Law. 13 December 1981 brought Martial Law up close and personal with the forceful and violent removal of Mrs Y’s father from the family home. The Police militia also broke her mother’s spine and Mrs Y and her two siblings were left alone as children; abandoned, bruised and emotionally broken.

Mrs Y’s father was transported to a prison near the USSR border in Wlodawa and it was planned he and other Solidarity leaders would be transported to Siberia’s death camps. The nation was in a state of emergency and the army was deployed with full force of armoury: tanks, guns and tear gas grenades. A 7pm curfew was imposed and there were many arrests, beatings and mass killings. Citizens found walking the streets after the curfew would be shot dead on sight.

 Mrs Y says that ‘by the grace of God and the charity of the Australian government, their family was welcomed to Australia.’ She is very grateful and loves Australia. Her parents worked hard putting her and her 2 siblings through university enabling them all to pursue careers. Her sister has a PHD in Chemistry and is a Pharmacist, her brother completed two degrees in mechanical engineering and computing and is currently employed in IT management. Mrs Y has a Diploma in Psychology and is a Registered Nurse. She is married with 3 children who all have a Catholic Primary School education. The family attend a Catholic Church in Cranbourne.

This is where life begins to go belly up once again but this time in increasingly socialist Victoria.  

Having heard about the Safe Schools Program 2 years earlier, Mrs Y was concerned when her son went to Public High School this year, and she learnt the school curriculum included it. She made an appointment with the school for more information but in an hour-long appointment, Mrs Y wasn’t actually given any information about content and was dismissed with the assurance ‘it’s not what is advertised in the media.’ So, what is it then?

Mrs Y left the school knowing nothing more about the program, and she was cautioned and left frustrated. Ignorance is not always bliss and the result was that trust between school and parent had been breached. She wrote to the school advising she did not give permission for her son to participate in this program and did receive a reply assuring that her wishes would not be ignored. But Mrs Y was cautious about the type of education shaping her children’s worldview. She has witnessed firsthand the political grooming of children and is horrified at the prospect of sexual grooming. (That’s her way of expressing what she’s learnt about the program).

Mrs Y took to social media because she thought Australia was a free country and FaceBook (FB) an available platform in the public marketplace of ideas. She became a FB follower of Politicalpostingmumma (PPM) sharing evidenced based material she found there. She also shared her own research into the Safe Schools Program.

Despite holding what she considered to be intellectual, respectful and cautious conversations on this platform, after a few days she was logged out of her account by FB. Via Messenger, Mrs Y also received threats from Paul Fry who had introduced himself as a gay man. He said he’d made screen shots of her and other FB users posts, and was going to sue them all! She was also vulgarly mocked by Simon Hunt (aka Pauline Pantsdown), who had screen shot her comments and shared them with others. 

Despite contacting FB for assistance, they didn't reply to Mrs Y and she learnt that PPM and others were also being logged out of their accounts by FB for their opinions and were receiving threats from gay activists. They were being bullied and silenced into conformity - an all too familiar socialist tactic.  

Mrs Y created a new FB account and continued to actively support PPM and post her own findings making it clear she would vote No for same-sex marriage. A strong believer in public debate, Mrs Y felt free to post comments on FB with her concerns about same-sex marriage, the Safe Schools Program and show support for Pauline Hanson’s political statement in wearing the burka in to parliament. Stunt or statement – she thought it was up for debate and of public interest.

When Mrs Y heard an interview with ACL’s Lyle Shelton mentioning he is aware of other people being bullied by gay activists, she identified with this and confidently made a comment on the interview thread. About 10pm that night she saw a video clip from ABC’s Monday night Q & A program which used children as political instruments to actively push for gay marriage. Mrs Y was horrified, likening this to child abuse and exploitation. Here were 9-12-year-olds forming ‘The Children’s Party’ for ‘marriage equality.’ 

Familiar with the socialist tactic of indoctrinating children through formal education to be more aligned with state dictates than parents values, Mrs Y commented on FB asking whether parents knew about this and had given their consent for the children’s participation in a political party.  Within 10 minutes she was again shut down by FB who are now asking her to prove her identity by providing her photo licence, passport, bills with details, school/ group magazine subscriptions, and bank statements. 

No explanation was given for shutting her down or for why she should need to provide identification documents which are not required to set up a FB account.

As a fellow Australian, Mrs Y is a strong supporter of the Australian Constitution, the rights of citizens (including freedom of speech and expression of cultural and religious identity) and doesn’t understand why her voice is being silenced on issues related to public morality which impact her and her family. She is being bullied and harassed by the very community that claims itself to be bullied and harassed, sometimes even to suicide.

In her view, the same-sex marriage advocates in this public debate use aggressive bullying and vulgarity to silence the public. As in her communist past, Mrs Y asks ‘why this illusion? It seems to be already decided for us with manipulated information and bullying tactics.’ This is shattering the Australian ‘fair go’ many migrants and asylum seekers came for. 

We could all ask, 'tell me why, they don't have a voice?' 

 

By Vickie Janson 20 Feb, 2017
That is why Dumbing Down author Dr Kevin Donnelly is concerned about the Australian “care, share and grow” approach to education – making all students feel good about themselves. Everyone is a winner, and criticising failing students is considered bad for their self-esteem

Some parents are concerned this feelings-based education is merely affirming a low level of achievement. It is telling kids they’re OK when they’re clearly not – and is actually dishonest. These parents are concerned their children are being set up for more painful failures later on, when they compete with others for employment.

Mature adults know that learning to deal with failure and criticism is a life survival skill that makes people more resilient and employable. Building self-esteem at the expense of real life skills is not only an academic failure, it is a moral one.

It is time to reassess the priorities of education in Australia. Two international tests – PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) and TIMMS (Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study) – indicate that Australian students are actually going backwards in basic maths and science skills. (see chart below)

A common Australian response is to argue for more education funding – but this argument is wearing a bit thin. When it comes to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics), Australia has been out-performed by Kazakhstan – a relatively poor nation of public schools, insufficient funding and a low level of teacher training.

It’s clear others are doing a lot more with less. OECD research confirms the strongest performers in PISA are not the wealthiest countries, nor those that allocate more money to education.

Jennifer Buckingham, Senior Research Fellow at The Centre for Independent Studies lists some of the topics at a recent Australian education conference – including such subjects as “thinking and doing research on female bodies differently – listening to moving bodies”, “Nietzsche on aesthetics, educators and education”, and “Meet the phallic lecturer: Early career research in a neoliberal imaginary”. Among the several hundred presentations, only 14 titles contained the word “maths” or “mathematics”, while 10 contained the word “neoliberal” and 18 contained the word “gender.”

The conference topics suggest that our educators lack any serious intention to address the STEM deficiency – they appear to have other priorities. Sydney University, for example, offers final year Bachelor of Education students a 9-week unit on “sexual and gender diversity”. Other leading universities, including Wollongong the Queensland University of Technology, offer similar courses to preschool, primary and secondary teacher trainees. Bachelor of Teaching students at Melbourne’s La Trobe University are required to take a compulsory unit on “Diversity: Relationships, Gender and Sexuality” in their fourth year .

Australia’s international test results should be the catalyst for change in curriculum priorities. Governments should reject the 2006 Australian Education Union resolution that led to a disproportionate focus on sexuality in Australian curricula.

Over the past ten years, this goal has become embedded in programs such as the so-called Safe Schools Coalition. By encouraging children – minors before the law – to follow their sexual feelings even if this entails high risk behaviour, these programs endanger students’ mental and physical health. They also undermine the values of many parents. Some who have fled dangerous war zones and persecution for their faith now suffer the double blow of being vilified as “bigots” and “homophobes”.

There is now a plethora of sex education materials available in our schools. Yet in the light of declining STEM results, many parents would prefer to see this focus redirected to the basic disciplines such as literacy, maths and science.

Like Dr Kevin Donnelly, many parents lament the growing number of students who are leaving school illiterate, innumerate and culturally impoverished. Too many young Australians can put on a condom, but are not equipped to navigate the world around them or significantly contribute to it. That’s very sad.

´╗┐This article was republished from Family Voice Australia VoxPoint Magazine February 2017 

By Vickie Janson 23 Oct, 2016
While ‘ethical investors’ may be concerned about the Prime Minister’s shares in the tobacco industry many ordinary taxpayers are more concerned about their dwindling ethical shares in Victoria’s education.

It appears there is a huge ethical gap between what the Andrews Government define as ‘respectful relationships’ and the average Victorian parent. In light of our already over-sexualised society where teens are addicted to dehumanising and glamorised violent porn and girls are presenting to GP’s with internal injuries trying to fulfil the demand for anal sex - something our educators and porn industry alike present as ‘ultimate sex’- what parent would consider as a solution  a playful, dehumanising image of the sexual union as merely a ‘mixing of penises with bums, vaginas or mouth s’?

That’s the script from a video lesson for students in years 7 and 8 as part of the Respectful Relationships curriculum. I doubt most people find this approach to a deeply personal and important topic as respectful of their ordinary expectations.

What parent who desires their child to treat people humanely and respectfully wants to encourage them to view the opposite sex as giant genitals or an orifice to be filled? But what can we expect if educators and politicians alike approve of a giant animated penis as a teaching aid for young people? And this in the name of respect.

What parent doesn’t know that casual sex hurts people, breaks up families and robs children of parents. This playful non-committal approach costs families and costs taxpayers to pick up the broken lives. Our children are more than sexual beings and being groomed below their potential.

Perhaps one day students or their parents will sue our government and educators for not telling them the truth. Condoms don’t make it ‘safe sex’. As a matter of public health, condoms don’t protect anyone from the emotional trauma of rejection or the mental health issues so often triggered by failed romances and sexual encounters. In real life, people expect more than the ‘mixing of penises with bums, vaginas or mouths.’ Despite the approval of Education Minister, James Merlino, condoms are not as described  'a party hat'. 

The other important truth that educators and politicians shrink back from is that condoms are not designed or guaranteed for anal sex. Where is the warning in the curriculum about the consequences should condoms be used for this purpose?

In the face of giant penises, don’t our limp silent politicians have a duty of care to tell our children the whole story? The ethical gap between ordinary Australians, our educators and politicians continues to widen. The tolerance card can no longer be played by a government so intolerant of the ordinary expectations of Australians, especially the diverse ethnic and faith communities they claim to represent.
By Vickie Janson 13 Oct, 2016
I may have just caught the tail-end of the Member for Indi’s speech today but Cathy McGowan ensured the tail-end had plenty of sting in it. She would have us believe Australia’s LGBT community, for which Senator Wong and others stand incredibly strong, is far too fragile to cope with public debate about the public institution of marriage.

Despite the official question being framed as ‘Do you support a change in the law to allow same-sex couples to marry?’ McGowan continued to use her own terms of reference repeating the words ‘marriage equality’ incessantly throughout the speech. This was contrasted with a complete absence to any reference of equal opportunity for children to biological parents.

But McGowan’s main complaint about the proposed plebiscite was her belief the LGBT community have an unequal propensity to anxiety and shouldn’t have to ‘pay the price’ for this public discussion. This price is the assumed hurt feelings from unkind words that may accompany robust debate. It strikes me as ironic that McGowan is totally unconcerned that some children will pay the price of losing the legal possibility to a mum or a dad. She is not concerned about ignoring the wealth of research confirming this natural environment as being in the best interests of the child. McGowan is not concerned about faith communities paying the price with loss of religious freedom. That was made very clear as McGowan lamented any consideration for exemptions to accommodate freedom of conscience, religious or otherwise, for other Australians.

Fortunately McGowan was followed by Michael Sukkar MP who pointed out the obvious. He noted Australians have been engaged in this debate for five years already and the Labor Party has shown no concern for the vitriol levelled against those supporting traditional marriage by same-sex marriage advocates. Lets remember it was the threats made by them against the Mercure Hotel that pushed underground those who were peacefully gathered to oppose changes to the Marriage Act by democratic and civil means. The campaign for same-sex marriage seems to be intent on silencing any opposition to their gender agenda. Quite undemocratically, no other views or concerns about marginalised children, ethnic or faith communities count. Lets get real about who is really doing the bullying here. We don’t need our politicians giving more of the same.

By Vickie Janson 25 Sep, 2016
Will a change of law turn  ordinary citizens expressing their view into criminals? 
By Vickie Janson 06 Sep, 2016
Last week I had the privilege of joining La Trobe University’s Upstart Live program to discuss the proposed plebiscite and the ‘No Change’ position to the current Marriage Act.

At the commencement of the interview there was a bit of confusion over election results. So just to clarify it appears this was an honest misunderstanding of the voting system. Kurt opted to quote the ‘below the line’ vote for me (2,843) rather than the group total of primary votes which was 34,763 . It was understood by supporters that a vote above the line for Australian Christians (AC) was a vote for me and this is how we encouraged AC supporters to vote. I’m sure there was no desire on behalf of anyone to misrepresent the stats and a polite and profitable discussion ensued. I trust this will encourage more people to start this much needed conversation.

By Vickie Janson 08 Aug, 2016

It was a great privilege to offer the following short address to the Assyrian community in Melbourne in recognition of Assyrian Martyrs on their annual day of commemoration observed on the 7th August:

Thank you for the invitation to stand with you today to remember and honour the Assyrian Martyrs. Remembering is so very important because not just in Australia but in most western nations, the persecution, displacement and genocide of the indigenous people of Syria and Iraq, the Assyrian Christians, remains one of the best kept secrets. Indeed, the average Australian may never have heard of the Assyrian people or know that the indigenous people of Syria and Iraq are Christian. The average church goer in Australia may not even know that you are here today in Australia or consider that through our common faith, we share both a history and a tradition.

Australians desperately need to remember and be educated about our Christian heritage and the history of the war torn Middle East. There are few people better placed to deliver that education than the Assyrians who have lived through that history. Yet sadly, there seems to be little political will to remember the legacy left by our Assyrian Martyrs, or indeed, to learn from it.

 As I mentioned at the recent Protest Rally over the land grabs by Kurdish Peshmerga displacing even more Assyrians, Western politicians appear to be growing increasingly apathetic to their own faith tradition and incapable of understanding the consequences of the contempt others may have for it. We seem incapable of understanding that Christians are continually at risk of losing life, limb, liberty and their homelands in the Middle East because of an ancient hostility toward them. This is a hostility that connects them to the west and this same hostility is rising in the west.

Today we remember the many Assyrian individuals who have been martyred and we remember that Assyrian people, culture and religion have suffered persecution from ancient times to the present day. As the world’s conscience remains dull, and as Foreign Editor of the Australian Greg Sheridan points out  ' western media shuts its eyes to the persecution of Christians in the Middle East' - we are here today with deep regret that Assyrians continue to be abandoned by those they would naturally consider to be of their own household of faith.  It would be understandable if Assyrians felt like the Patriarch Joseph when he was rejected by his own household. On behalf of that household, I am truly sorry that the Assyrian people continue to be abandoned to corrupt regimes and trans-national jihadists.

 As we mourn together the neglected martyrs and decimation of the Assyrian nation, let us commit to educate our fellow Australians in order that they can also remember and that we as a nation can learn from the past and not repeat it.

 I want to encourage you to publish your history, to share stories in our local schools, to write and perform plays and use the arts in Australia to tell your story.

To this end I’d like to commend a resource to you that has been authored by religious liberty analyst, Elizabeth Kendal to assist others in understanding the Middle Eastern crisis and genocide of our fellow Christians. It’s called:

After Saturday Comes Sunday

Understanding the Christian Crisis in the Middle East

Unfortunately, Elizabeth was not able to be here today but be assured she continues to keep your plight before the churches, our MPs and DFAT officials in Canberra.

Elizabeth’s latest book, After Saturday Comes Sunday is a timely resource for all teachers, academics, politicians, community leaders and parents; for all citizens of the free world. This is a resource that will enable us to better understand the past and present and prompt us to remember the fallen as we are today. I encourage you to add it to your library and share it with others. Lest we forget.

Thank you once again for this opportunity to stand with you in memory of those from your community who have been martyred for identifying with Christ.

May God Bless and protect you all. 

By Vickie Janson 04 Aug, 2016

After waiting 30 days for the primary vote to be determined, the 825 counts necessary to determine the final preference allocation occurred in just 30 minutes yesterday. Without group voting tickets the preference flow was poor and it was clear that many voters chose not to follow the party recommendations.

Australian Christians (AC) did very well to more than double our primary vote to 34,763 but were excluded on Count 741-750 accumulating only a small number of preferences. The final AC vote with preferences was 49,708. Family First candidate Peter Bain stayed in the game somewhat longer and was the last to be eliminated before the Green and Liberal candidates took up the final two senate seats.

It appears that much of the Christian constituency did not support Christian values parties. In the light of the upcoming plebiscite and other issues, this is worth reflecting on.

Thank you to all our faithful members and supporters and also to the many new supporters; many of which joined us with great enthusiasm in the last hour. We so appreciate the hours in prayer, on booths, letter boxing and promotions via social media. Please continue to prayer for our role in the future direction in Australian politics. We thank you all. 
By Vickie Janson 05 Jun, 2016


 Michael Short, The Sunday Age Opinion Editor and Board Member of the Research Centre responsible for the study ‘Growing Up Queer’ has apparently transfigured himself into the Religion Editor with commentary in todays paper about the values associated with Jesus.

The one thing Short does get right is a reference to the biblical Golden Rule which is a tenet of civil society; ‘treat other people as you would like to be treated’.  Short then uses his opinion piece as a means of deriding the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) for its hollow faith which he claims ‘tramples the very values commonly associated with Jesus’.  Apparently ACL do this by their support for the current Marriage Act. As self appointed moral priest, Short announces that laws and people opposing same-sex marriage are ‘morally wrong’. How pluralistic.

With many loaded adjectives ACL are accused of being needlessly hurtful and disrespectful because of the view they hold. Sadly, this life is full of hurts and I don’t think we can limit this discussion to just one type of hurt when addressing such a significant social change.

For example, in September 2015 I stood on a marriage platform at a public rally with Millie Fontana who was raised in a same-sex family and she was hurt too.

Millie talked about her right: the rights of the child to a mother and father. Incidentally, Article 7 & 8 of the UN Convention on the Rights of a Child support preserving the identity of a child and offering every child the right to know and be cared for by their parents. But Millie talked more about hurts than rights. She referred to the ‘oppression’ when people tell children like her what it’s ok to feel. Millie loves her gay mums and her dad, but is a voice supporting the current Marriage Act. I don’t think we can call her homophobic or hollow.

Although she is not a Christian, Millie applauded ACL on their own platform and thanked Christians present for giving her a voice because as she said ‘no one else will.’ Millie doesn’t find ACL hurtful, but what she does find hurtful is the suggestion that biological parents in the life of a child doesn’t really matter.

As a fellow citizen who was also raised without a dad I have to wholeheartedly agree. Both fathers and mothers are incredibly important to children and their identity security. The hollow and heavy heart many children carry is often due to an absent parent. With the popularity of ancestry.com and programs like ‘Who do you think you are?’ anecdotally it seems clear a connection with our biological roots is food for the soul. Just ask our indigenous Australians.

Short’s mocking of references to the Stolen Generation as an ‘appalling and ridiculous argument’ should be considered in light of sentiments expressed by past Prime Minister Kevin Rudd. In his apology Rudd said these children were ‘human beings who have been damaged deeply by the decisions of parliaments and governments’. 

Why were they ‘damaged deeply’  if someone loved them? I would suggest they were damaged because they were deprived of their ethnic, cultural and biological identity normally provided by their natural environment. Shouldn’t we consider why any other group should be less damaged?

President Obama has on many occasions publicly lamented the pain of not growing up with a father in his own house and pointed to the connection of fatherlessness and violent crime. And former PM Prime Minister Julia Gillard when apologising for the forced adoption of babies referred to the ‘most primal and sacred bond there is: the bond between a mother and her baby’. Why is it these findings are now ‘appalling and ridiculous arguments?’

Treating other people the way we want to be treated would be allowing children the legal possibility of that important biological connection with mum and dad. If Short actually read the Bible he would know that ‘true religion’ is to care for orphans, not create them by design.

As Short turns to address ACL criticism of the Safe Schools Program it would appear he has little understanding of what Jesus actually valued. We can agree that no one should be bullied for any reason but despite Short’s claims, this is not what the the Safe Schools program is about at all.

I attended the launch of the Safe Schools Coalition and I have resources that were available on the day to promote the program. A flippant and hollow attitude toward sexual activity is expressed throughout this program. Should a school resource instruct children to ‘do it when they feel ready’, encourage experimentation, quote no minimum age and present a very casual attitude to sexually transmitted infections? Ironically it is those who care about the whole person and not just ‘the wibbly-wobbly bits’, as playfully described by the Safe Schools program, that are referred to as ‘hollow’. Perhaps Short ought to read a little more about Jesus and what he values.

Yes, Jesus takes the protection of children seriously and we should treat others the way we want to be treated. As a child of the sexual revolution myself I know, promiscuity hurts people; especially children. All children naturally desire to know who they are and central to this is a mother and a father. Denying this innate desire may create many more hollow hearts. That is a genuine concern many share with ACL.

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