from Bassett, Brash & Hide
An unruly mob in Albert Park has catapulted New Zealand into the global headlines with ugly images that may become iconic in the debate about the dangers of transgenderism.
Bravo Kellie-Jay. You did the job that needed to be done.
For all the talk in the days preceding Keen’s arrival in New Zealand of countering free speech with ‘more free speech’, that was never going to happen. We don’t have The Oxford Union or Speaker’s Corner. That’s not how we debate ideas down under.
The die was cast from the moment our Immigration Minister, Michael Wood, announced that Keen would be permitted to enter the country despite, in his words, her “inflammatory, vile and incorrect world views”. The Minister declared that he would prefer it if Keen “never set foot in New Zealand” and added, “I find many of her views repugnant, and am concerned by the way in which she courts some of the most vile people and groups around including white supremacists.”
The message had been sent — by all means, come to New Zealand, but you’ll be on your own. Keen’s hotel cancelled her booking as she was mid-flight to New Zealand, and her security arrangements were also cancelled without explanation.
When Keen arrived at Albert Park on Saturday morning she was met by an unruly mob of activists hellbent on preventing her from speaking. Exactly who they were, it’s difficult to tell. Among the transgender rights activists were at least five Members of Parliament, mixing with autogynophiles, fetishists, so-called ‘allies’ and thugs spoiling for a fight.
No sooner had Keen walked into the Band Rotunda in the corner of Albert Park, than she was doused in tomato soup. Within minutes the barriers were thrown aside as the mob encircled the Rotunda in ugly scenes that have now made their way around the globe on social media. It was an increasingly volatile situation.
Keen had no chance of speaking. Her mere presence in the Rotunda was enough to enrage the mob. But her point had been made. The same groups demanding recognition as women for the purpose of such things as sport and healthcare as well as access to women’s-only spaces were the same angry mob violently assaulting a relatively small group of women in a usually quiet park in central Auckland.
The police loitered by the perimeter of the park, staring at their boots or their phones as the chaos unfolded meters away from them. But then again their job was not to keep the two groups apart, or keep the peace. They weren’t going to interfere with the mob justice that was being meted out in the park. Instead, they were no more than taxi-drivers, waiting for Keen to force her way out of the angry crowd and onto Princes Street where the police obliged with a lift to her hotel and then the airport.
New Zealand’s governing parties and media could not have been more closely aligned with the thugs. Reminiscent, in fact, of Mussolini’s (fascist) Italy.
It was shocking to watch and images of those fifteen minutes have now been viewed many millions of times and have been commented on by international media and personalities with audiences many times the population of New Zealand.
We have indeed contributed to the global debate about transgender rights — but only by showcasing how intolerant this group is, and how violently they react to ideas that challenge the perceived orthodoxy in our South Pacific hermit kingdom. It has cast a spotlight not only on the violent undertones that exist within parts of the transgender movement; but also on New Zealand’s own appalling record of violence, particularly with regard to domestic violence.
Had it been a white male that made a similar comment about another sex and race, he would be long gone by now having been forced out and made to publicly apologise. Not given a second chance to rewrite their slur against another sex and race.