From the Guardian, a little insight into part of Australian society:
Professor Barry Spurr suspended by Sydney University over offensive emails
Spurr, a consultant to the federal government’s national English curriculum review, has been suspended over ‘serious allegations’, university says
The University of Sydney has suspended Prof Barry Spurr over emails in which he called the prime minister, Tony Abbott, an “Abo lover”, Indigenous Australians “human rubbish tips” and Nelson Mandela as a “darky”.
In a statement, the university said Spurr was facing “serious allegations in relation to offensive emails sent from a university account”.
Spurr, a poetry expert, was a specialist consultant to the federal government’s national curriculum review looking at English from foundation to year 12.
The emails, first obtained by website New Matilda, have seriously damaged the review’s findings, with Labor calling them “tainted” and the Australian Education Union saying the review had been exposed as “an ideological waste of time from the start”.
In a series of emails over two years sent to senior academics and officials within the university, Spurr wrote that Abbott would have to be surgically separated from his “Siamese twin”, Australian of the Year and AFL star Adam Goodes, who is Aboriginal.
He said the university’s chancellor, Belinda Hutchinson, was an “appalling minx”,’ while other women were described as “whores”. He used terms such as “mussies” and “chinky-poos”.
Here’s a prime example (if it is true) of how a smart guy, a noted academic, failed to think:
Spurr had not responded on Friday, but has said previously the emails were part of a “whimsical” game with another person to outdo each other in extreme statements and were not meant to be taken seriously.
Not a great idea to play such a daft game.
There’s a whimsical interest of mine to know whether his professional abilities as a poet were a major factor in his attraction to a game of racist name calling. Is that performance art, perhaps?
Given the Guardian’s promotion of its own manifesto in its Middle East reporting, is there any of the same phenomenon going on here? For example, whatever the quality of Aboriginal literary culture may or may not be, does the Guardian believe it should be positively promoted? Regardless? If any independent thinkers out there (who are knowledgeable on the subject) would care to enlighten me, I would be grateful.
See the complete train wreck, here.