When cartoonist Jon Kudelka started the #ruddmentum hashtag on twitter in response to the never ending ALP leadership speculation. I thought it was pretty funny, but sadly #ruddmentum soon developed a life of its own as it was picked up by the mainstream; by the trolls in #auspol; by everyone that disliked Julia Gillard.
This sculpture by Jon Kudelka, part of the Art From Trash show, now in the Long Gallery, is also pretty funny.
But today it doesn’t seem that humourous at all. Today the Rudd Sculpture with its butter knife in the back of its head just makes me feel sad for my country. Today I mourn the loss of Julia Gillard, I mourn the loss of our first female Prime Minister and I will always be grateful to Ms Gillard for opening my eyes to the truly horrendous levels of misogyny in Australia.
There will be thousands of words written today about Julia Gillard and I will leave you with this extract from Van Badham’s article in The Telegraph
The message sent to Australian women is a cruel one. The message is that achievement does not equal respect if you’re a woman – that sexism does not become less as you ascend the slippery pole of power, but intensifies. That if you call out the misogyny for what it is – as Gillard did – you’ll be belittled again, for using what your critics call “the gender card” and what every woman knows is the goddamn truth.
In the face of our first female Prime Minister’s vile treatment and viler end, one could forgive Australian women for rolling over and giving up, and finding a nice, soft place to wait out life and die.