‘Black Coal Matters’ car sticker defended by Queensland senator saying BLM movement deserves ridicule
A Queensland senator says he was joking when he posted a photo of a ute emblazoned with “Black Coal Matters” to social media this week and that the Black Lives Matter movement deserves “all the ridicule coming to them”.
- Senator Matt Canavan posted a photo of a ute sticker that read “Black Coal Matters”
- He says the post was a joke, but the sign has been changed to “Qld Coal Matters”
- A Darumbal woman says he is making light of Indigenous disadvantage
The post by former Resources Minister Matt Canavan was met with public outcry on social media earlier this week, including from Victorian MP Lidia Thorpe who wrote the post demonstrated “complete disregard and racist behaviour”.
This morning, Senator Canavan told ABC Capricornia he did not accept Ms Thorpe’s accusation.
“I reject that completely. I think we’re a good hearty people who like to have a joke,” he said.
“This is a movement this year that has organised rallies against public health orders.
“They have been involved in violent protests in the US alongside antifa.
“They are a radical organisation that, as I said, if you’re involved in violence you should be condemned.”
Senator Canavan does not own the ute.
Senator Canavan said he recognised the past injustices faced by Indigenous people in central Queensland.
“I absolutely accept that our history is one that we’ve got to recognise the violence that occurred,” he said.
Sign changed to ‘Qld coal matters’
The sticker on the car has since been changed to read “Qld Coal Matters”, but Darumbal woman Melinda Mann said it was not good enough.
“There’s still a parody of Black Lives Matter here in the way that people and different groups are using that slogan to raise the issue of the over-incarceration of black people around the world,” Dr Mann said.
She said the post goes against the Federal Government’s attempt to close the gap around Indigenous disadvantage.
“It reinforces the lack of will to actually engage in the conversation around black lives in that it continually makes light of the issue,” Dr Mann said.
“The over-incarceration of Indigenous people in this country is something that Mr Canavan’s own Coalition Government has committed to decreasing.
“Yet he makes light and he makes a joke of a target that is a central, key point in the close the gap refresh, which was announced by the Prime Minister only months ago to reduce the over-incarceration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.”