Dan Dixon reviews 'Moral Panic 101: Equality, acceptance and the Safe Schools scandal (Quarterly Essay 67)' by Benjamin Law

Dan Dixon reviews 'Moral Panic 101: Equality, acceptance and the Safe Schools scandal (Quarterly Essay 67)' by Benjamin Law

Moral Panic 101: Equality, acceptance and the Safe Schools scandal (Quarterly Essay 67)

by Benjamin Law

Black Inc., $22.99 pb, 144 pp, 9781863959513

Dan Dixon

Dan Dixon

Dan Dixon is a writer living in Sydney. His work has appeared in The Guardian, Meanjin, and Overland. He is

...

It is rare, in 2017, to return to a long news story’s beginning, to untangle its threads and find how it came to occupy its looming position in the cultural imagination, to learn how the dog-whistle words gathered their energy. Impressively, Benjamin Law’s Quarterly Essay achieves this feat. It is a meticulously researched piece of writing, clear-eyed and forceful. Law makes the unambiguous case that conservative media figures and politicians lied about the Safe Schools program and ruthlessly exploited the queer community as a battleground in the culture war. He traces Safe Schools’ transformation from a policy launched by the Abbott government and happily supported (or at least tolerated) by both sides of politics, into a political football about which The Australian wrote thirty-one stories in 2015 alone.

Read the rest of this article by purchasing a subscription to ABR Online, or subscribe to the print edition to receive access to ABR Online free of charge.

If you are already a subscriber, click here, or on the ‘Log In’ tab in the top right hand corner of the screen, and enter your username and password to log in. If you have logged in but are still seeing this message your subscription to ABR Online may have expired. Please contact us or click here to renew your subscription to ABR Online. More information about ABR Online can be found on our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Published in December 2017, no. 397

Leave a comment

Please note that all comments must be approved by ABR and comply with our Terms & Conditions.

NB: If you are an ABR Online subscriber or contributor, you will need to login to ABR Online in order to post a comment. If you have forgotten your login details, or if you receive an error message when trying to submit your comment, please email your comment (and the name of the article to which it relates) to comments@australianbookreview.com.au. We will review your comment and, subject to approval, we will post it under your name.