Germaine Greer named ‘Australian of the Year in the UK’

Author Germaine Greer has been named ‘Australian of the Year Living in the UK’, and has taken the opportunity to criticise the global #MeToo movement.

The author told Fairfax Media that she’d like to see women speaking up sooner about sexual harassment, rather than bringing incidents to light several years later. Greer’s message to those involved in the #MeToo movement was it’s “too late now to start whingeing.”

The #MeToo movement has seen people speak up about incidents of sexual harassment, intimidation and assault, particularly in the entertainment industry.

It has lead to scrutiny of the behaviour of many men in the entertainment industry including film producer Harvey Weinstein, actor Kevin Spacey, Australian entertainer Craig McLachlan and comedian Aziz Ansari.

Speaking to Fairfax Media Greer said she’d rather see women take action immediately when it came to matters of sexual harassment.

“I want women to react here and now. I want the woman on a train who feels a man’s hand where it shouldn’t be… to be able to say quite clearly, ‘Stop’.”

The author said she feared that many of the women coming forward with historical cases of sexual harassment would ultamitely be “taken apart” by the men’s lawyers in court.

Speaking in London Greer said she was thrilled to accept the Award from the Australian government.

“I’m thinking of myself as representative of all the old ladies who’ve never been given anything.” Greer said.

Australia’s High Commissioner, Alex Downer said Greer was someone who always had something interesting to say.

“She always has something interesting to say, it doesn’t matter whether you always agree with people,” Downer told the Seven Network.

Previous winners have included political strategist Lynton Crosby, singer Kylie Minogue, historian Meredith Hooper, milliner Frederick Fox and comedian Barry Humphries.

Greer has been an outspoken critic of recognising transgender women. Back in 2016 Greer restated her belief that society should not recognise transgender women.

Appearing on the ABC’s Q&A program the author said she recognised people who were born with a biological condition but not those who declared themselves to be transgender.

“If you’re a 50 year old truck driver whose had four children with a wife and then decided that the whole time you’ve been  a woman – I think you’re probably wrong.” Dr Greer said.

OIP Staff

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