News & Current Affairs

By Ben Aulich



Cancel culture (call-out culture) is a form of ostracism in which someone is taken out of social or professional circles – online, on social media or in person.

Some say it is an effective at combating sexism, racism or abuse to others. They say it holds people accountable for their actions in ways that were not possible in the past.

Others say the phenomenon has spun out of control and it is now so strong it amounts to erasing history, encouraging vigilantism or lawlessness, muting people and violating the free exchange of ideas, thoughts and speech.

I find it hard to agree with just about anything Piers Morgan says, but doesn’t he have a right to say it? Not anymore it seems after a flood of complaints spurred on by social media led to his recent resignation.  Some commentators have lamented his departure as it will lead to the further erosion of spirited debate on British television.  They may well have a point.

The Australian media / celebrity landscape hasn’t been without our own recent controversy.  Eddie McGuire’s train-wreck of an interview led to him having to resign as President of the Collingwood Football Club. His comments were atrocious, but really? He couldn’t even see the year out after being at the helm of that club for nearly 23 years.  Do a few insensitive or ill-judged comments cancel out a lifetime of otherwise good works?

The Chief Executive Officer of Minter Ellison Lawyers is now out because she expressed opinion about a senior partner giving advice to Christian Porter. I don’t agree with her view, but should she be outed from that organisation because she expressed it?

Of course people need to be held accountable for their comments, but are we all now too precious that a comment or opinion which is against our own moral compass or even offends most of us demands that cancel culture has to kick in?  Is this just the latest example of political correctness gone mad?