Posts by TracyMac

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  • Hard News: Living with the psychopath,

    Yes, can we please not blanketly discuss these offenders and the treatment programmes in exclusively black and white terms?

    I was a victim of sexual abuse as a child. I have had a young family member recently complete a programme as an offender. Let me tell you, finding out about his offending rang a lot of bells for me.

    However, for him, receiving that treatment was the best thing for him. His offense was not anywhere near Murray's league; he is young enough and the signs are very encouraging that it will work.

    I strongly believe that lumping my young family member into the same regime Murray should be subjected to - preventative detention, if it were available - or the arsehole who abused me (prison, I wish) would be incredibly counter-productive. Where possible, rehabilitation/treatment should be the primary objective.

    Perhaps even more so in abuse cases, because of that trail of damage they leave behind. Universal witch hunts would not be conducive to the aim of catching them young and treatable.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: The Up-Front Guides: The…,

    Not exactly, it isn't. Celebrants and ministers can take the marriage vows and declarations that comprise a legal ceremony.Sure, it still needs to be registered, but a registrar is not required to hear the declaration (witness the oath, so to speak) if an approved celebrant has.

    In Germany, and possibly other European countries, a celebrant's role is purely ceremonial. And has no legal relevance.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: The Up-Front Guides: The…, in reply to Angus Robertson,

    Other than what Chris has been explaining, my other point is mainly about the angst that certain religious types have about the "sanctity of marriage". If it were reinforced that marriage is now a civil ceremony despite its roots (and those roots are in fact part of what I find distasteful about it), then perhaps all that bleating would stop.

    Churches are still entitled to be as bigoted as they please in our laws (although perhaps not going to US extremes, as shown this week), so you can have your ceremony as "sanctified" as you like. But not legal until acknowledged in the approved civil manner.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: The Up-Front Guides: The…,

    To solve some quandaries about religion vis a vis marriage, there is a simple solution: go the German model, and make legal marriage the sole purview of the civil authorities. Sure, do what you want to in your church, if you must, but it's not legal until you make your declaration to the registrar and sign the piece of paper.

    As for Steve's fulminations earlier, I'm also personally against the idea of marriage as a legal concept privileging certain relationship configurations. Particularly in countries like the US where you're even taxed differently. Not to mention its historical purpose (ensuring legitimacy and inheritance for the propertied classes).

    However, we're stuck with it, so the fact that we (queers) remain second-class citizens in this respect makes it worthy to fight for.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: On the possibilities of a…, in reply to Keir Leslie,

    Ahah, thanks for clarifying the double jeopardy being the same (and Graeme). Interesting it still hangs on.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: On the possibilities of a…, in reply to David Ritchie,

    This is the kind of situation, and even more so in the Ewan Macdonald case, where the Scottish verdict of "not proven" is appealing, when the preponderance of motive and evidence goes one way,but not beyond "reasonable doubt".

    I understand that verdict is given in very much a minority of cases, and has the effect of getting around potential double-jeopardy problems. You'd want it to be relatively rare to avoid back doors being continually left for the convenience of police/prosecutors.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

  • Busytown: “Glory! Glory! There’s the salt!”,

    Beautiful tribute.

    And yes, the oddities and diversity and mixture of characters in her writing always felt welcoming. Even with the uneasiness of the plots.

    The Changeover is still my favourite - bought the original edition last year (yay Abebooks). I also like Maddigan's Fantasia, book and show (and many others, of course).

    On another note, libraries were lifesavers to me growing up, and she has been so thoroughly associated with them. I'll be thinking of her when I do my next book run.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: It's not funny because it's…, in reply to Joe Wylie,

    I'm sorry, I usually find what you have to say reasonable, but are you really concern-trolling about Brownlee's weight with that remark about "risks"?

    Two things: obesity is not an infallible predictor of heart disease or any other disease, and I assume you are not his doctor; there is also this tedious little law that it is illegal to discriminate against people due to their health status.

    His size has nothing to do with his personality or ability to do his job, such as they are.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: OK with JK, in reply to LegBreak,

    Are you pointing out the omission of the "Sir"? A column that talks about Kirwan in his professional context, not at an afternoon tea party with the Queen, should be all "Sir John" this and that?

    (By the way, you don't give someone's full name with the "Sir" preceding. It'd be Sir John Kirwan KZNM if you wanted to give his full title. His wife is "Lady Kirwan".)

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Who'd have thought?,

    I know it's trendy to pile on about school uniforms, but they have a function that was valuable to me growing up, in a poor family that lived in rich, poor and middling areas. They don't confer magic powers of discipline and pride in kids, but they're a democratising outfit.

    You lose many of the shitty status cues embodied in mufti clothing, and it's also one outfit that had to be kept in reasonable wear, and had nothing to do with fashion. Even at the decile 1 school I attended (before deciles existed), I dreaded mufti day, because I had nothing modern, or first-hand, or the slightest bit cool to wear. It was obviously much worse in places like Epsom.

    Of course, in these days of ridiculously over-priced uniforms, I think that egalitarian aim is undermined, but still.

    As for single-sex schools, I can also vouch for the fact it's a very different kettle of fish for girls, often. I went to 9 schools; there is no comparison between 8 of them and the one state girls' school I went to. I'm sure the school itself was important - maybe a Selwyn would have been just as liberating - but I've heard the same from others who had the same experience (and I think studies reflect that girls tend to do better overall).

    An interesting conundrum that one. Part of the objectives of education is to do a bit of societal indoctrination - how soon do girls need to accustomise themselves to subtle and not-so sexism from their peers and "superiors" (beyond possible family influences)?

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 521 posts Report Reply

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