Anthony Albanese’s talk of cutting LGBTIQ References from Labor policy shocked and outraged many. He made a strangely off-key remark about the number of inclusions of the term LGBTIQ in his party’s wordy policy platform document.
The New Daily reported he voiced his concerns about the length of the document in a party meeting.
But his highlighting his irritation with the frequency of the term LGBTQI in a 300-page document justifiably upset people.
Mr. Albanese is perhaps correct that the party manifesto needs pruning.
But the great unanswerable question is why he chose LGBTQI communities to single-out; what was going through his mind?
Is the man a “casual” Australian homophobe, or does he simply not like long lists of capital letters?
His track record in supporting LGBTQI communities, including through early and open support of marriage equality, should speak volumes.
How could he not realise, that even if he thought the term was being overused, that by voicing his annoyance, he would upset communities justifiably tired, and sometimes frightened, of being made a scapegoat?
Perhaps it was the first crack in the political enigma we call “Albo.” Our newly-minted opposition leader may have just illustrated how wanting his judgement can be.
It is a very early political blunder, and an altogether unnecessary one.
At least the critics can take some comfort in the fact Mr. Albanese has no power to change the document himself – so the removal of the phrase is unlikely to happen.
It was, and is his own left faction that is responsible for the inclusion of LGBTIQ issues in the Labor policy platform in the first place. Such change takes the party machine, and that machine would have no taste for Albo’s views.
Analysis – by Jeff Waters
Jeff Waters is a veteran national and international television, print, online and radio journalist, and the author of two non-fiction books.
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