These Change.org petitions flow thick and fast into my email inbox, and once you have signed one, you are bothered to sign more. No matter the cause, I have only signed seven. I did recently sign this one though, https://www.change.org/p/federal-minister-for-education-hillsong-church-is-trying-to-proselytise-their-religion-in-australian-schools-we-say-no
I don't seem to remember Pat Cash acting badly on the tennis court. Patrick Rafter was a good sportsman but then lost my respect when he moved his money to the Cayman Islands to avoid tax. Lleyton Hewitt was argumentative. Mark Philippoussis, spoilt brat.
But oh my god, how bad behaving are our current male tennis players Bernard Tomic and Nick Kyrgios. I won't mention rugby player Israel Folau beyond a possible petition I saw which I expect was in jest, Gays raising money to fuck Israel Folau. Everyone has their price.
Or the cricket cheat sandpaper bloke., which I think may have been the year before.
The shining beacon among sports people this year have been former Aboriginal footballer Adam Goodes, a person who made me cry when he recounted the racism he had suffered when he was an Australian Rules football player.
The other is tennis player Ashley Barty, who is a winner at tennis, a good sportsperson, who does not get herself onto the front page of newspapers for bad behaviour and just seems like a thoroughly nice person who is really good at tennis. Go Ashley.
But person of the year for me must go to New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. I've heard she won't be re-elected and I don't know why. I have little understanding of NZ politics and its system. To remind you, we were half an hour away from Christchurch on a ship cruise back in March when an Australian gunman allegedly shot up umpteen worshipers in a mosque. While non New Zealanders may have seen a good bit on tv, on New Zealand tv itself as she addressed the nation, Ardern was just magnificent, explaining, comforting, informing and visiting. Kiwis do perhaps expect earthquakes and other disasters, but none expected such a massacre to happen on their soil. She gave great comfort to the country, and to visitors like ourselves.
Yet again, she was there at the frontline after the recent volcano eruption and the loss of mostly Australian cruise ship lives.
This may have to be corrected, but while forty homes were burnt in NSW yesterday as I write this, our PM Morrison flew off on holiday to Hawaii. I don't begrudge politicians holidays but they have to be around when disasters are happening to offer support, comfort and solace .
This very politically cynical old gay bloke asks you as Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, to take a bow as my person of the year. You were magnificent at a time of a national disaster and wrote a script for politicians all over the world.
But it could also be our Australian firefighters.