Frank Lightfoot wants reform in the Catholic Church after the findings of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
Frank Lightfoot wants reform in the Catholic Church after the findings of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Scott Kovacevic

Assault opens 72yo Gympie protester's eyes to male violence

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Violence is not the answer

THE Gympie Regional Council's Round Up newsletter referred to the tourism discussion paper.

Included in the paper was a wishlist item that the smoke would stop coming out of the fibreboard factory at Monkland. Forty people have lost their jobs as a result of the smoke stopping.

Another wishlist item was to change the negative perceptions about Gympie.

We still have some way to go with that one, judging by what happened to me on Saturday.

To raise awareness of the rape of up to 30 per cent of Catholic nuns by priests I had a protest sign on the footpath outside St Patrick's church.

I sat across the street so people would feel more comfortable reading it.

One chap took exception to it came over to me and hurled a bit of abuse my way and wanted to fight me. Verbal abuse sometimes comes with the territory. I declined the invitation for fisticuffs.

A little later he came back to the sign and started to make off with it.

That was not OK.

I went over to get it back and ended up being assaulted and spilling about a teaspoon of my blood.

We will not change Gympie's negative impressions if too many Gympie blokes consider it OK to use violence when they do not get their way.

I am 72, he was about 40-plus, taller and heavier than I.

For me it was a tiny insight into how too many women and children must feel when they are being attacked by someone bigger, stronger and with a warped view of how the world should be.

I eventually put the sign back up.

From their reactions, I assume that not many Gympie Catholics are aware that such a high number of nuns were raped or sexually assaulted.

Frank Lightfoot,

Veteran

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Gympie Times


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