THE Liberal Nationals are a black and white bunch and so hard-nosed you could strike a match off them ("Tamil family fears island return imminent", Herald, 9/6).
Tight-lipped, morose Peter Dutton is bad enough, but now it seems he has passed his unbending, inhumane baton on to his successor, Karen Andrews.
Foreign Affairs Minister and Minister for Women, Marise Payne has stuck her two bob's worth in by saying her government is considering New Zealand or the US as possible places to resettle the Tamil family who have been detained on Christmas Island for several years.
The town of Biloela opened its arms to this family. They love their home town and the town loves them. Then Big Brother in the form of the Home Affairs Minister stepped in and dragged them out of a safe, loving environment. Now they must wait day in, day out, traumatised and hoping some government person will exercise some mercy and bring them home. When it comes to asylum seekers and folks like this family, the LNP shows its true colours and that it is a government not of and for people but one purely for and fixated on itself.
Julie Robinson, Cardiff
Inhumane treatment a disgrace
JOHN Howard said, "we will decide who comes here and the circumstances in which they come," initiating the decline of Australia as a compassionate and welcoming nation to asylum seekers.
Sadly, many Australians have accepted Howard's xenophobic rant to be their "norm." This can be seen with the apathy within Australian society toward the shameful and cruel treatment the Morrison government has inflicted upon the Murugappan family.
Priya and Nades Murugappan and their Australian-born children Kopi and Tharunicaa have been detained on Christmas Island since 2019. The "Biloela Tamil family" as they became known, are real life examples of the inhumanities the LNP our governments have inflicted in our name.
The Murugappan family pose no threat to Australia. The people of Biloela welcomed the Murugappan family and wanted them returned home. The ham-fistedness ineptness and abuse of power of Scott Morrison and Peter Dutton as ministers of the Crown is highlighted by "the Biloela Tamil family's" treatment and, the LNP want the "the Biloela Tamil family" deported as quickly as is possible. This unprecedented deportation of Australian-born children is likely to happen when Morrison is overseas. Enabling him to again dodge the responsibility for another abuse of power.
Barry Swan, Balgownie
No good reason for this debacle
NEITHER the cold nor the rain dampened the spirits of people gathered together on King Street this week as they held a vigil for the Biloela family. With enthusiastic support from passing traffic, they stood to demand that the government reunite Tharunicaa with her family, and let them return to Biloela to live in peace. Their community and Australian people want them back there. Biloela is their home. Conversations reflected the universal belief that there is no reason good enough to justify what Morrison's government has done to this family.
Niko Leka, Mayfield
Drivers need to act their age
IT was great news to read a report by Nick Bielby about the police crackdown on hoon drivers, ("We'll be taking their cars", Herald, 9/6). The report detailed the police stopping a group along Newcastle Foreshore driving dangerously recently and another group dropping big burnouts one Friday night. They talk of people in their late 20s and early 30s. But there is also another group of hoon like drivers and these are middle-aged men who drive luxury cars the likes of Lamborghinis, Ferraris, Porsches and Mustangs.
These drivers seem to delight in drawing attention to themselves and their luxury cars by creating bugle sounding and fire cracking noises from their modified exhaust systems. They enjoy speeding away from traffic lights and using the foreshore as a temporary race track. It would be great if the police were to also catch some of these drivers and take their luxury cars. Maybe, just maybe it might help them to mature into normal middle-aged drivers like most of us.
John Fear, Newcastle East
Appointment a 'retrograde step'
I AM writing in support of Richard Denniss' call for the University of Newcastle to reconsider its appointment of Mark Vaile as chancellor ("Award returned in protest", Herald, 10/6). Mr Vaile's appointment as chairman of Whitehaven Coal, shortly after he left public office, is a classic example of the so-called "revolving door" between politics and "Big Coal" that is corroding democracy in Australia. Appointing Mark Vaile is a retrograde step and sends the opposite signal needed by a student body in need of visionary leadership and a smart sustainable future.
Ray Peck, Hawthorn, Vic
Forced to play waiting game
A VERY interesting letter Graeme Kime, ("Mixed messages on jab gaps", Letters, 9/6), where you stated you had your first AstraZeneca needle in May and the second one due in August. Lucky you for at least having the first jab - we were due to have our first jab in May, but because we developed a cough (COVID test proved negative), understandably we had to cancel and rebook. We were able to reschedule, but can't get in until November. Today we both received a letter from the Australian Government telling us "it's never been easier" to get vaccinated and encouraging everyone to be vaccinated. We are both aged over 70, so we should be able to get our second jab in 2022. Mixed messages for sure.
Trish McKay, Cooks Hill
Lockout laws have been costly
FINALLY, an announcement that countless Novocastrians have been waiting for ("Pub trial takes shape", Herald, 9/6).
Soon, 24 licensed premises will no longer be shackled with the counterproductive lockout laws, which, in my opinion, have done little more than dramatically hinder Newcastle's nightlife, destroy business, and cause mass unemployment. There's been much bragging about the rise of small bars, but not much gets mentioned about the loss of other businesses. Some have dismissed the laws as causing job losses for just "a few bartenders", but often overlooked is just how many people suffered financially from the closure of businesses the laws have caused. It's not just bar staff who've lost work and/or their jobs altogether. Many industries have felt the sting including restaurant staff/late night food vendors and other night time businesses, musicians and other live entertainers, taxi and Uber drivers, as well as cleaners who used to work in now non existent venues. A 2019 parliamentary inquiry revealed that the lockout laws cost Sydney's night time economy an estimated $16 billion dollars per year, and I'd be very interested to know how much the laws have cost Newcastle annually since 2008.
Adz Carter, Newcastle
MORE LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
WHY should the former deputy prime minister Mark Vaile not have a job because of a minority opinion? He has every right to be employed by any business he chooses too. One person's opinion should not stop employment. Note, Professor Martin didn't fully resign from Newcastle Uni.
Tony Jones, Swansea
IT would appear the NRL players are emulating soccer players by taking a dive to secure advantage after a slap in the face. If you are laying there to secure a penalty and it is awarded then you need a rest in the head bin for 15 minutes.
John Bradford, Beresfield
ABSOLUTELY right Steve Barnett (Short Takes, 10/6) smoking is very much illegal at bus stops. Almost every day I pass offenders at my local stop, but if I gently remind them that they are breaking the law I am frequently met with a tirade of abuse. I have approached the council and the transport company for help but the only group interested was the Department of Health who put up some "no smoking" stickers which were torn down within days by vandals. So no, no one seems to want to enforce the law on these inconsiderate dolts.
Greg Hunt, Newcastle West
I BELIEVE the federal government's governing Coalition members would do well to measure the seats of the opposition benches in anticipation of losing the next federal election. Their lack of compassion towards the Tamil family of Priya and Nades Murugappan and their two children Kopika and Tharunicaa by refusing to let them settle permanently in Australia will lead to decent empathetic Australians withdrawing their election support.
Ian Stewart, Elermore Vale
SUFFER little children to come to Australia, and we will make them suffer, we will send them to Christmas Island. State sponsored child abuse. A pox on the rulers of this society.
Richard Ryan, Summerland Point
IN reply to Steve Barnett's query on how jobs are created in the renewable energy industry. 1. The number of people engaged in the manufacture of solar panels I'm not sure but more than one. 2. The truck driver who delivers the solar panels. 3. The solar panel installer. 4. The electrician who wires it up. There are four for you and we've only used solar. Of course there are more; sales people and publicity people. But you can get the picture I'm sure. I don't suggest these numbers represent a true picture of full time jobs.
Fred McInerney, Karuah
JOHN Lawton, (Short Takes, 20/6), thank you. Mea culpa accepted with a smile on my face. You are proof that views can be expressed on this page and even if we disagree it doesn't need to be uncivil.