Dame Elisabeth Murdoch, Patron of the Australian Family Association, dead at 103 | The Stirrer

No one doubts Elisabeth Murdoch did a great deal of good: but she also lent her name to bigotry.

This article was first published on The Stirrer.

Dame Elisabeth Murdoch, Patron of the Australian Family Association, dead at 103

Martin Cathrae http://www.flickr.com/photos/suckamc/

Last night Dame Elisabeth Murdoch died, aged 103. She was a much loved philanthropist. She was also a patron of the Australian Family Association.

Whilst on the surface a supporter of a cause that supports families might sound warm and fuzzy, the reality is that a supporter of the AFA supports a cause that is intolerant of same-sex attracted people, and intolerant of same-sex relationships. It upholds a definition of marriage that excludes same-sex attracted couples.

The good dame was also the patron of the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute. Today their web page announces:

Her vision and commitment have saved thousands of children’s lives and improved the health of many more living with rare and common childhood conditions.

The irony of this is that her having been a patron of the AFA, an organisation deeply intolerant of homosexual people, is that her good reputation gave credence to bigoted values that have proven links to contributing to the alarming rate of youth suicide, mental health issues and other forms of self-harm.

While she may have been a wonderful person, she linked herself with a disreputable organisation, in stark contrast to many of the values she espoused in her public life.  She sided with bigots and homophobes and we shouldn’t forget that.

Whilst many remember the great good that Dame Elisabeth Murdoch did for society, we must also remember her as a person who upheld bigotry.

4 thoughts on “Dame Elisabeth Murdoch, Patron of the Australian Family Association, dead at 103 | The Stirrer”

  1. Well said Michael.

    I know it’s extremely unpopular to speak ill of the dead, but you know what, just because you’re dead that shouldn’t give people a free pass to forget or overlook the life you led. The notion that we should only speak in glowing terms ignores the reality of people’s lives, and sure, it might be tough to hear, but we should not forget the good, or the bad.

  2. thanks for your article Michael – it needed to be said. Just because the person has died, changes nothing. The truth should not be sanitised when LGBT folk are killing themselves. I would be ashamed to be on the AFA patron list, and I look forward to the day when even less patrons are listed. Patrons of intolerance and bigotry.

  3. How pathetically typical. A woman devotes her whole existence to improving life for so many children and others rather than partying, and just because she has an association with an organization that dares to question your ‘lifestyle’ you demonize her in the most vile way. If any of your test-tube/surrogate/artificial sperm donor children ever become seriously ill, I’m sure you’ll keep well away from the Childrens Hospital in protest against this horrible, bigoted, homophobic woman!

    1. Most people would be disturbed by a philanthropist of the calibre of Murdoch being a patron of a hate organisation that promotes values strongly linked to an alarming rate of youth suicide. Her public benevolence is incongruous with this patronage.

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