Friday 19 June 2009

Springborg chastised by his own pink party

Former leader of Queensland's LNP, Lawrence Springborg, has caused a bitch-slapped

Springborg, now the Deputy Leader of the Opposition, who also holds the titles of Shadow Attorney General, Shadow Minister for Trade, and is the Member for Southern Downs.

In a statement on Wednesday evening, Springborg referred to Union as "pansies", after holding up a a punnet of the flowers in Parliament. He suggested that unions change their emblem.

“I want to say to the average Queenslander that the unions are the very definition of a pansy—pathetic and wimpy,” Springborg said.

His statement challenged unions to start "standing up for their members instead of meekly accepting the Bligh Government’s fire sale of assets. Last week’s capitulation on the sale of Queensland assets is something the unions should hang their heads in shame over.”

However, the use of "pansies" has offended many in the LNP, including members of the Party in Cairns. The have asked for a public apology.

"Lawrence, in a time when we see the Conservatives in the UK reaching out to the gay and lesbian voter in a positive way; realising that social inclusiveness is not only right but also a legitimate way to boost the conservative vote – it was disappointing to read the press release issue by the LNP under your name," wrote a senior Party strategist.

"Whilst you may claim that the definition of a pansy is 'pathetic' and 'wimpy', for many of us who are members of both the LNP and the Queensland community, the usage of the word 'pansy' is used a derogatory term for gays and lesbians.

  • Urban Dictionary definition:-
    “Pansy - someone very pathetic and wimpy, generally used as an insult against both sexes. Often confused with fag, sissy and other rather small-minded terms for a homosexual man. “
"Yes it does say pathetic and wimpy, but it does continue as you see," wrote the LNP member. "Lawrence, you can do better; you do know better."

"I think you deserve to be chastised and the many gay and lesbians who are members of the LNP to be apologised to."

"I'm sure that there were other measures that you could have taken, or words that could have been said, that did not also (and perhaps unintentionally) insult the gay and lesbian community," the LNP member wrote to Lawrence Springborg.

Since Springborg's statement, he has received a flurry of letters and emails against his “pansies” comment, including from Dennis Quick, who directed the campaign during the last State election.

I'm sure that former Federal Liberal Member for Leichhardt, Warren Entsch, who is the Regional chair for the LNP and an advocate for a more progressive approached to gay and lesbian legislation, would be far from impressed.

It's an outdated attitude to say the least, and while the deposed leader was trying to make a point about Unions, and be funny, it was hardly well-thought out.

The press release has been pulled from the LNP website overnight.


Doc of cairns said...

How ridiculous. I am gay and certainly not offended or angry. Eliminate our entire language and be done with it. As politicians you'll only force them to say less and inform us less then they already do.

JKR said...

Oh please ... surely you are not that easily offended? The word "pansies" has been part of the Australian vernacular for generations.

Agreed Springborg can do better, but a public apology is simply ludicrous.

As another saying goes: "harden up princess!" Please don't tell me references to "harden up" or "princess" offends our gay population too?

Bert Wills said...

Sounds like the local LNP hacks are a mob of Pansies themselves.
I categorically deny that I called Lawrence a Lesbian!

Labor Party Hack said...


I appreciate, and make allowances for your obvious youth. I wish I was your age; growing up in an era where discrimination because of one’s sexual preferences is lessening by the day.

But there are some of us, yes the ones that fought the battles that your generation JKR is now reaping the benefits of, who remember the slurs and epithets that were used against us.

Because a term has been used for some time does not it right and does mean that it is not offensive. If I were to use the word “coon” in many situations it would cause offence. How many people would assume I was referring to our original Australians and not cheese?

If we meet JKR, I must remember to call you princess. I wonder if you will be offended?

JKR said...

I appreciate your vigilance LPH and evidently must tip my hat to your past sacrifices. But your comments make me think of an old lesson: that of sticks and stones.

I tend to think that I will have had a good day if the worst thing that happens to me LPH is that I meet you and that you call me "princess".

Actually, being called "princess" is far less offensive to me then your arrogant assumption about my age, and the underlining suggestion that my opinion is somehow less informed merely because I do not bare the exact same scars that you do.

It is enormously hypocritical for you to lampoon one stereotype concerning homosexuals and then immediately apply your own stereotype concerning age.

If we meet LPH, and after you call me "princess" I will allow you the opportunity to apologise for being ageist! Or perhaps we might recognise that we are all offensive at some level to someone and that perhaps, in addition to a message of tolerance, thicker skins are also required?

Alison Alloway said...

Well from a women's perspective, I have been called "Princess, flossie, dear, darls, poppet, love, lovie, sweetheart, flower, chickie, bird, honey and doll" in my younger I'm older I get "flossie, flower, Duchess, Mother, Mumsy, old bat,and lolly.....". What does it matter anyway. ROFL "lolly"!!!

nocturnal congress said...

I once worked with a dear lady who was one of the "little people". She had a habit of calling everyone "darls, dearie, or lovie."
Well, there she was on the phone talking to another female public servant somewhere in Brisbane. We could hear our "little person" constantly saying, "Yes, lovie. No, lovie." Then we all heard an angry shriek on the other end of the phone. "HOW DARE YOU PATRONISE ME BY CALLING ME LOVIE!"
Our little person was visibly upset and paled. "Uhhh, sorry darls, so sorry lovie...I won't do it again lovie......" she stumbled nervously back. We all roared!!

Sir Humphrey said...

Local LNP a bunch of Pansies ?? we have a much revered champion and all around cat shagger Blakey to prove that comment completely False! never a more heterosexual lad about town.However the word about one of Dennis "notso" Quicks former employers and wannabee members is that the issue is not so clear cut amongst all the ranks.