In Defence of Tony Abbott and the Pointlessness of the March in March

March in March Abbott MemeWas the March in March pointless?

That depends on what you wanted to achieve. Did you want to hang out with a group of like-minded people, hit the odd bongo, hold a sign bearing an attempt at a clever slogan, chant something repetitive and possibly naughty, and feel good about yourself? Then no, it wasn’t pointless at all. It was a rather grand day out, weather permitting.

If you wanted to actually to bring about any meaningful change in this country, however, then the March in March was extremely and completely pointless.

Tony Abbott won the election. By a fair bit too, if you dare to have a look back at the numbers.

Fair and square, he won the right to govern this country until the next election.

The coalition might be going back on promises, changing laws and really doing things you don’t like very much.

So when the next election comes around, make sure you don’t vote for them.

In the meantime, you should then be doing everything you can to change the minds of those that did.

Politicians are vacuous creatures who thrive on public approval in order to survive. A type of monster or zombie who thrives on attention, and without it sits and withers in a position as an overpaid consultant or in the public service, until eventual and long overdue retirement.

Look at how often both Gillard and Rudd changed their policies depending on where the votes were. I believe that Tony Abbott doesn’t actually even have an opinion of his own. He is just recharged every morning at the conservative alter of worship, with powerbrokers pouring the water of ill-thought out and popular wisdom down his ever-thirsty gullet.

However, if you think that we need to banish him from this country, well you’re against democracy. What would you rather? A dictatorship like Zimbabwe or the AFL? Maybe some sort of anarchist regime would work best, and that’s not a bad idea.

The protestors during the March in March weren’t voting for system change though. I mean they were, because they were demanding the removal of a democratically elected leader who has the support of the majority of people and military. So good luck on that one. Hit those bongos extra hard, you’re going to need extra strong wrists to push past all those people.

In recent state elections Liberals have been gaining votes at elections all over the country. So despite the opinion of everyone involved in the March in March, it seems that that conservative ideals are exactly what the majority of people in this country are hankering for at this moment in time.

In terms of causing some positive change, the March in March was a good starting point. Like minded people turning up to share information on a range of topics. Can’t be a bad thing. Much like turning up on your first day of school is a good start to getting an education.

If you stop there though, you’ve learnt absolutely nothing.

What matters is what happens next. So anyone involved in the March in March or who agreed with any of it’s myriad ideals, time to press on, not opt out.

It’s not Tony Abbott or his government that you need to banish from this country. What needs changing are the opinions of the people who voted for him.

So instead, why not get to work on that?

Pick an issue, do some research, and explain logically to people who disagree with you why they are incorrect.

Making passionate pleas without logical reasoning is only going to cause those who already with you to nod along, and those who don’t to dismiss you as quickly as before. Problem is, those doing the dismissing are the majority of Australians. We voted on it.

Getting together with like-minded people and discussing why you’re right does feel good, but you’re not getting any extra votes for anyone.

Hang out at an anti-abortion rally, they all reckon that they’re right as well.

Scott Ludlam of the Greens made a fantastic speech to a basically empty senate that went viral. Out of all the congratulations, sharing and tweeting, what’s it actually achieved?

At what point did he say anything that all the people who already agree with him didn’t already know?

Who did he reach who didn’t already share his views?

At the last election, the vote of the Greens dropped. Indicating by the only poll that matters, that they’re becoming less popular.

The March in March blanketed social media, and so what? Don’t mistaken ‘likes’ and ‘shares’ for real activism. No matter how often something is retweeted, it still doesn’t equal one vote.

Both of the big parties have been treating the people of this country like stupid children for too long. With slogans, misinformation and lies.

Combating that with clever slogans is a fast track to nowhere.

The logic, science and correct information is right there, and not hard to come by. Seriously, I had more trouble finding a video store and travel agent in my area, than some quick facts on why our asylum seeker policy is racist.

If you want to change things for the better, start a more intelligent conversation with those who disagree with you. Don’t continue to be a part of the same stupid one.


Xavier Toby is a writer and comedian.

His debut book about life as a FIFO (fly in fly out) worker is available now from:

Read an extract here: