A Response to A Holler’s Comment Published here
By Chris Sherlock
AH : You have put forward a valid case for the removal of Mr Sandilands.
CS: Not only valid, but sound!
AH: I wonder if you realise that a number of Mr Holleran's family members are school teachers (one a principal and two others leading teachers). I wonder if you also realise that he has children himself and a large number of nieces, nephews and cousins. He is not ignorant of the concerns you raise and I believe that you have demonstrated a lack of imagination and empathy with regard to Mr Holleran's field of experience.
CS: This is using a rhetorical technique and logical fallacy known as "argument from authority". It is a fallacy because while Mr Holleran's family members may be school teachers, it is largely irrelevant to the arguments being put forward. Mr Holleran is not, in fact, a teacher. While he may have children himself, he cannot claim ultimate authority on the teaching and raising of children. Whatever arguments that he has publicly stated, the facts of his person do not make your case.
What is somewhat infuriating is the claim that there is a lack of "imagination" and "empathy". One wonders why imagination is required in understanding that the disabled babies and children should not be subjected to mocking and exploitation, as Kyle Sandilands exhibited when he strapped a 14 year old girl to a lie detector to subject her to questions about her sex life and later blatantly (and over the protests of his colleagues) mocked the deformed baby of a Pakistani couple. I might remind the poster that Kyle Sandilands called this child "spider baby". There was not much empathy displayed by the station when he made his "joke". I fear that the lack of empathy did not come from Roz Allardice, but rather from those who sanction and defend the right of Kyle Sandilands to make vile remarks about other people's misfortune!
AH: As a teacher, I don't see how leaders in the Australian media have the same responsibility as schools do to educate and protect our students. Their core business is about communication and satisfying shareholders, which diverges significantly from our core business of literacy and numeracy.
CS: This argument appears to be that only teachers have a responsibility towards protecting children. This shows a fundamental and disturbing lack of understanding of ethical behaviour. While 2DayFM's "core business is about communication and satisfying shareholders", it most certainly does NOT mean that they abrogate their responsibilities to the society within which they broadcast their programs. I also find it remarkable that a teacher would consider that the only core business of teaching is "numeracy and literacy". Most teachers would disagree that this is the sole function of schools. Compassion, a duty of care and an ability to nurture the children under their care are a fundamental part of an effective education system. Without this, learning is significantly hampered and the quality of life of young people is significantly impaired.
AH: I would also like to point out that Mr Sandilands' behaviour towards women is fairly typical of Australian males with a similar intellect and maturity as Mr Sandilands.
CS: I challenge this. Mr Sandiland's sexist and mysoginistic behaviour is NOT typical of the average Australian male. Most males do not want to "shut the mouth" of female journalists. Only a small minority would ever utter in public that "you haven't got that much titty to be wearing that low cut a blouse. Watch your mouth, girl, or I will hunt you down. It is disgusting and horrid to think that you have such a low opinion of your fellow countrymen, and is completely inaccurate.
AH: I ask you, how do your students learn to stand up to bullying of the kind you describe? How do any of us teach students how to manage challenging situations and maintain their own power? Without training in resilience, removing Mr Sandilands (and other periodically offensive media personalities - Sam Newman, Eddie McGuire, Alan Jones), people never learn how to deal with the type of antisocial Mr Sandilands indulges in.
CS: The question asserts that in order to allow students to "manage challenging situations" they must listen to abuse on commercial radio. What absurdity! To take the argument to its absurd conclusions, one must believe that in order to reduce antisocial behaviour one must have prominent figures undertake antisocial behaviour.