House debates

Wednesday, 16 February 2022


Member for Boothby, Ryan Electorate: University of Queensland

7:57 pm

Photo of Julian SimmondsJulian Simmonds (Ryan, Liberal National Party) Share this | | Hansard source

I just want to comment on the issue of the day in the time I have remaining. It was an absolute privilege today to watch the valedictory speech of my colleague the member for Boothby, Nicolle Flint, in this chamber. She is a courageous and tenacious member of the House, and as a new member I have learnt so much from the upstanding way she has carried herself. I've worked with her on issues involving funding for endometriosis treatment and research and seen the effective way she advocates and secures real change in the place. I've also seen the way she holds her head high and refuses to be diminished by the abhorrent behaviour that has been directed at her by political opponents. Nic, thank you for the service you have given your community and this place and for your support of colleagues like me. You are a great loss to our parliamentary party room.

In her speech, the member for Boothby called out commentators, political operators and activists of the Left who preach tolerance and support for women in politics but then direct at their female political opponents the most horrendous and vile abuse. Lo and behold, the Left were at it again today. We saw a terrible display of vandalism and violence from members of the Left at the University of Queensland in my electorate of Ryan. Today was market day, and young volunteers including young women were volunteering at the UQ Liberal National Club tent. They were attacked and had their property defaced with red paint and were labelled Nazis for simply expressing their political opinions on campus. Members of our Australian Defence Force also had their own tent at UQ's market day, and the same thugs were videotaped spray-painting the front of the ADF tent and hurling expletives at these service men and women. I am a fierce defender of free speech, but time and again we see the Left seeking to silence conservative men and women on university campuses through the use of violence and intimidation. Shame on these leftist criminals for using violence to try and silence free speech! If my Labor and Greens opponents in the Ryan electorate had any ticker, they would call out this disgusting behaviour by their supporters. I'll be contacting the UQ vice-chancellor to demand an investigation to identify these thugs and expel them from their studies on campus. Students should be able to go to market day and choose clubs and societies to be a part of, free from violence and intimidation.

House adjourned at 20:00