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SOAPBOX: Dildo claims a bigger problem than Dickson thinks

Steve Dickson MP and Pauline Hanson MP One Nation election commitments.
Steve Dickson MP and Pauline Hanson MP One Nation election commitments. Patrick Woods

STEVE Dickson may have made a bigger error than he thought when he made his widely panned Safe Schools comments recently.

Safe Schools has become a favourite target of the far right, which has used a combination of fabrication and exaggeration to create an object of fear it can use as a rallying point.

Mr Dickson was trying to pick up on these themes when he laid into the program. His problem was he was too specific.

Mr Dickson, despite his status as Queensland One Nation leader, remains a local MP. So when he declared "we are having little girls in grade four at school, these are young girls being taught by teachers how to masturbate, how to strap on dildos" the obvious assumption was he was referring to a specific Sunshine Coast school.

He compounded that impression the next day when, under intense questioning about the allegations, he said he was repeating complaints made to his Buderim office by parents over the past two years.

And here is the problem.

What Mr Dickson describes in his allegations is child sexual abuse. It is simply not something that is tolerated within our society.

If parents had contacted Mr Dickson or his office with these specific allegations during the past two years, he had an urgent duty to refer those allegations to the police. If he believed they were part of the state-run education curriculum, he had a duty to call it out immediately so it could be addressed.

It would have been the biggest scandal to hit Queensland since the Fitzgerald Inquiry.

But this is the first we've heard of it.

So, what is worse? That Mr Dickson may have made up his allegations, or that he didn't make them up and simply failed to mention them until now?

Topics:  editors picks one nation politics qldelection2017 safe schools steve dickson



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