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It’s been one year since the Attorneys-General failed to raise the age. Since then, the ACT has announced its intentions to go at it alone and change the laws to keep ten-year-olds out of prison. The question now, is will other states and territories show the same political courage and take the action that so many Australians, doctors, lawyers and families are calling for and raise the age to at least fourteen?
A sitting disability is a severe and legitimate physical disability, comparable to a mobility impairment. It is time for anti-discrimination principles to be applied to us, rather than sarcasm, humour or ill-informed advice, so that we may enjoy full participation and inclusion in society.
If ‘Omelas’ shows us that people can act in wilful ignorance of inequity, it also shows us that people are entirely capable of forgetting inequity altogether. Further still, it suggests that those conscious of the child in the tower are morally capable of calculating its impact upon the world and proceeding anyway. By personifying this calculation of human life, Le Guin shows us that injustice is often a product of a system of justice.
And these passengers, along with the driver, will be unhappy, both as a result of the time you’ve wasted fumbling at the scanner with your bus pass and because of the smell emanating from your long, matted hair, which they’ll have to endure for the rest of your trip. They’ll whisper among themselves as they glare at you and make mock retching gestures.