Welcome to 2020SocialJustice

If you care about social inequity, you are in the right place.

This site has posts about asylum seekers, race and racism, gender and sexuality, bullying and abuse of power, mental health and disability, lifestage issues and suicide, poverty, power and privilege, as well as general ideas about social justice.

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Note: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are advised that this site may include images and other references to people who have passed away. It may also contain links to sites that may use images of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people now deceased.

 

Most recent ...

International High Flyers win Study Support Scholarships

October 26th, 2017   

The “International High Flyers”, we decided to call them (unofficially). They are the five winners of the 2020socialjustice Study Support Scholarships at RMIT University in Melbourne.
They came to Australia on permanent humanitarian visas from different corners of the world, and are an amazing group of young people. Whatever they are doing in ten to twenty years, I’m sure it will be impressive. Winning these Study Support Scholarships is a step along the way.

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Caring (for the bottom line) in residential aged care

October 20th, 2017   

It makes bloodcurdling reading, the series of articles by Fairfax Media on residential aged care in Australia.
And, it’s not just about ‘a few bad apples’.
Residential aged care is big business, profits take precedence over care, the accreditation system eclipses neglect and abuses, the complaints process is ineffectual, and the market myth camouflages the cracks.
This post expands these points, drawing on the articles.

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Spirit-Sickness and Values through an Atheist’s Lens

September 1st, 2017   

As an atheist who believes in spirit-sickness, and the importance of strong values, I find myself having interesting conversations about how that can be. What does it mean to believe in the spirit if you don’t believe in God, one friend asked. How can disbelievers suffer spirit-sickness? Where do values come from in the absence of a received framework (such as can, for example, be provided by religion)?
I’m interested in other people’s experiences and moral journeys.

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Getting angry (or not) about abuse, injustice, illness

July 22nd, 2017   

I get angry about abuse and injustice, but (so far at least) not so much about my own illness. Friends are surprised by my apparent complacence. I’ve been surprised by their surprise, intrigued by my own inconsistencies, and curious about triggers for other people’s anger.

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Who am ‘I’? What is ‘me’? In sickness, health, and (near)death?

June 23rd, 2017   

‘I’ have hope and passion and belief in social justice. The embodied ‘me’ too often feels defeated, especially when my body is behaving badly. This separation of ‘I’ and ‘me’ is not an everyday occurrence, and I wonder about other people’s experiences.

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No excuses for “crimes of the father”

May 19th, 2017   

There are no excuses for child abuse, and Tom Keneally makes none in his novel about pedophilia in the Catholic Church. Keneally’s insights into the perpetrator mindset are disturbing and he also illustrates why it was never going to work for the Church to investigate itself. His narrative seems a plausible fit with reality, although views on this may differ depending on personal experience.

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Wealth Inequality – from Daniel Blake to Robo Debt

April 28th, 2017   

I recently watched “I, Daniel Blake” and “The Founder” in a single viewing, immersed in the story of wealth inequality unfolding between their extremes. These films, closer to fact than politicians care to admit, reflect the lived reality of punitive welfare systems on the one hand, and unfettered plutocracy on the other. They have close parallels in current Australian society.

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Social justice student award fails university obstacle course

April 9th, 2017   

It seemed like a good idea at the time. A perpetual student award, for an essay related to social justice. The academic aspects were straightforward to organise, but the administrative aspects were not. Lack of overall coordination across these two arms of the university created a barrier to sustainability. The endowment has now been transferred into one-off Study Support Scholarships.

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What role for ridicule in resistance movements?

March 17th, 2017   

Ridicule works, the meme claims. But to achieve what, I wonder, raising seven questions about the effects (and effectiveness) of ridicule when the aim is non-violent resistance against abusive forms of power.

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As my friend lies dying…it’s not black and white

January 12th, 2017   

“I support euthanasia,” I would have said, without hesitation, until recently. That was before my friend, Eva, begged me to help her to die. What a huge thing it would be, I now realise, to decide the timing of another person’s death – even if it was legal, which in Australia it currently is not. Eva is now in palliative care, alive but with no life. Palliation is no panacea either, I have learned, and nothing about dying is black and white.

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