A person has died in an Australian prison camp on Manus Island, scores are injured. They were allegedly set upon by PNG police and locals wielding knives,machetes and stones.
I called Scott Morrison’s office a minute ago. I said, “I wish to convey my concerns about Manus Island please.”
The receptionist made that nasal noise we women make when our lips are pressed and sucked very tightly together in annoyance, “mmm.”
“Right,” she said.
“Well would you mind taking my name and number?” I asked.
“Fine,” she said.
I gave her my details and she made that “mmm” sound between every word and digit. When I was done I said, “would you mind reading my number back to me please?”
Silence. Not even a bitchy noise. Then, “aherm, I’m sorry, I must have missed it.”
Not really making notes of concerns then, I take it.
In fairness, she’s not the only one who’s not really interested in the bloke in the body bag on Manus.
As of 3.30pm, literally hours after Radio NZ of New Zealand carried the story, News.com.au showed no signs of “the disturbance”. Instead the AFP raid on Channel 7 in the hunt for Schapelle’s millions takes centre stage. Craig Thomson’s verdict gets a guernsey, there’s even a feel good lost/found dog story, but no mention of the person fleeing murder and persecution who’s ended up murdered in an Australian immigration facility. Weird.
Channel 10’s news page is leading with the cast of Modern Family who’ve finally touched down in Sydney – phew! Channel 7 is loving itself sick (understandably) with thanks again to Schapelle, a story even arch nemesis Channel 9 deems more newsworthy than our asylum seeking friend.
If you think for one moment I’m going to venture into AM talk-back territory even for research purposes, you’re crazy! I’m feeling fragile enough as it is.
It doesn’t seem so long ago that refugee news was hotter than a Mercedes Corby Ralph shoot, but for some reason this tid bit is being somewhat sat upon by those we trust to tell us the news.
It was only a week ago we were assured that “most” Australian’s wanted Asylum seekers “dealt with more harshly.” So what’s up? Terrifying, bloody murder in a jungle too harsh? Not harsh enough? I’m confused, but then, I’m often confused by Australia these days.
If only someone would just tell us the truth. All of us.
MORE STORIES BY MESHEL LAURIE
*Meshel Laurie is a stand up comedian of 20 years experience, a radio and television broadcaster and writer. She co-hosts Melbourne’s Nova breakfast show with Tommy Little. Her television credits include Spicks and Specks, The Project, Can of Worms, Rove, The Circle, ADBC, Adam Hills: In Gordon Street Tonight, to name but a few. Meshel recently released her first book, a memoir titled “The Fence-Painting Fortnight of Destiny” and she continues to blog at MeshelLaurie.com. The site is also dedicated to connecting charitable people with charitable organizations, and fighting racism. Meshel is a proud official ambassador for His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama in Australia, and for Reconciliation Australia. You can follow her on Twitter @Meshel_Laurie.