Geoff Shaw – Pariah to Minister?

Peninsula City Church - Geoff Shaw's spiritual home. from their Facebook profile.

Peninsula City Church – Geoff Shaw’s spiritual home. from their Facebook profile.

Well, it’s happened at last. Liberal MP for Frankston has left the Liberal Party in a manner designed to cause maximum damage, in line with what appears to be his usual mode of operation. Ask his ex-wife. Nah, just kidding. He makes (irony alert) a perfect Liberal MP. The Age today provided a list of his qualifications, which I have modified as follows

Shaw a member of an extreme evangelical church with very close ties to Watoto Church in Kampala, the epicentre of support for for the Ugandan ‘Kill The Gays’ Bill.

In his maiden speech he mocked the politically correct acknowledgment of Aborigines as the ”original owners” of this country by granting God that honour.

April 2011 he wrote to a young gay man, Jakob Quilligan, likening his gayness to a paedophile’s desire to molest children or a hoon’s urge to speed.

He was charged with assault  in 1992 while he was working as a bouncer in Frankston.

In August 2011 he was allegedly involved in a scuffle with a motorist during a road rage incident.

The Ombudsman found he inappropriately used his parliamentary car to run his hardware business; he and his staff (under his direction) used the vehicle to drive around Victoria, NSW and South Australia.

The Australian Electoral Commission is examining his fund-raising after Fairfax revealed he had run a little-known 1500 Club, not registered with the commission.

He simulated masturbation in the chamber in October and allegedly yelled ”wanker” at the opposition.

He supported the push by AG Robert Clarke to reinstate religious exemptions to anti-discrimination law.

He supports the right of doctors who oppose abortion to refuse to refer a woman to another doctor or service who will, backing the repeal of Section 8 of the 2008 Abortion Reform Bill.

To which impressive resume he can now add, brought down Ted ‘Nice But Dim’ Baillieu and handed control of the Victorian government to the Lib/Nat ‘Dries’. Quite a career trajectory: from night-club bouncer to Premier-bouncer. Now the colourless nonentity he’s responsible for elevating to the Premiership is wooing this charming man to come back to the party.

When asked last year by the Australian if he wanted to be a Minister, Shaw replied: “Absolutely. I’m not doing it to sit on the back benches, let me tell you.” Maybe that’s his price for supporting the government and not triggering an election. I’d like to see them try.

Mr Shaw normally keeps his fundy religious views under wraps: he failed to mention them during his election campaign in the interview with the Frankston Leader.

When asked to reveal ‘secrets’ people might not know about him, he offered : “I’m a third Dan blackbelt in karate, but . . . I gave it up about 15 years ago. I play footy for the Frankston District Tiger Sharks. I play the bagpipes and the drums. I love Phil Collins. I’ve seen him live. I like Hall & Oates, Tommy Walker, that sort of thing. I don’t own an iPod. I like to play my CDs out into the room.”

His other big secret was that he’s something of a technophobe. He only got his first mobile phone during the election campaign.

Nothing about belonging to a would-be world dominating Pentecostal sect, CRC Churches International, which is pledged to ‘cover the earth with churches’ Its Frankston branch, Peninsula City, says “We actively engage in reaching and renewing people through the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ seeing them equipped, empowered and released as reproducing disciples.”

Some of those ‘reproducing disciples’ from CRCs Ugandan branch, Watoto, are Pastor Martin Sempa, and sponsor of the Ugandan ‘Kill The Gays’ Bill, David Bahati.

Shaws words to Jakob Quilligan are instructive:

You state that you ” want to work, live and love freely during the course of my life, and I want to do that without thinking that I can’t”.

What if I loved driving 150kms per hour in residential areas? What if there was a convicted sex offender who stated that, or a child molester? Can they still do what they want? Under your statement the answer is yes.

What if one wanted to get drunk, take drugs, steal and murder? What if one loved this? Can they also do what they want without thinking that they can’t?

Maybe he’ll get a junior job with AG Robert ‘Spina Bifida’ Clark**. They’d get on like a house on fire.

Parliament House.

More stories on Shaw

** has never resiled from the following, or apologised.

“Robert Clark . . . . has likened homosexual practices to smoking, except that they were far worse.

“It is a foolish practice, it is destructive and it is harmful, and that is capable of scientific and medical measurement and assessment,” he told Parliament in 1995.

“I believe homosexual practices form a destructive way of life, destructive to the individual and destructive also to other individuals who are brought into that way of life. I suppose it is most readily demonstrable at a physical level; it is a physical fact that the human body is not designed for many homosexual practices and it is clear that physical problems follow from those practices.”

Mr Clark went on to quote a student medical text stating that homosexual male pedophiles commonly reported molesting hundreds of victims, while heterosexual pedophiles “molest only a few”.

He referred to figures provided by a gay and lesbian rights group which he said showed that statistically there was greater risk of homosexuals engaging in child abuse than heterosexuals.

It would be “absolutely wrong”, however, to attack or vilify those engaged in homosexual practices. If homosexual predisposition were genetic, then those so affected had to come to terms and deal with it just like people born with haemophilia or spina bifida. It would be a “false kindness” and misleading, deceptive and dangerous, however, to say such practices were acceptable.

Mr Clark told The Sunday Age that he was expressing an individual view at the time as permitted under the Liberal Party’s constitution. Asked about Mr Olexander’s allegations, he said: “I do not believe the Liberal Party is bigoted or prejudiced against people because of their sexual beliefs.”

About the author

Veteran gay writer and speaker, Doug was one of the founders of the UKs pioneering GLBTI newspaper Gay News (1972) , and of the second, Gay Week, and is a former Features Editor of Him International. He presented news and current affairs on JOY 94.9 FM Melbourne for more than ten years. "Doug is revered, feared and reviled in equal quantities, at times dividing people with his journalistic wrath. Yet there is no doubt this grandpa-esque bear keeps everyone abreast of anything and everything LGBT across the globe." (Daniel Witthaus, "Beyond Priscilla", Clouds of Magellan, Melbourne, 2014)