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PVO folds - regrets publicly criticising Grace Tame - still thinks same, just regrets publishing it

Cancel culture.

There's more to Matthew Simmonds' story at

Here's an extract:

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Political journalist and The Project panellist Peter van Onselen has expressed regret for writing a controversial column following 2021 Australian of the Year Grace Tame’s decision to not smile in a photo-op with Prime Minister Scott Morrison ahead of the 2022 AOTY ceremony.

In a podcast interview with Tom Ravlic on the Critical Line Item with Tom Ravlic, van Onselen said on reflection of the ordeal that followed the column being published, he no longer finds his initial commentary for The Australian necessary.

Van Onselen said:

“I think it was probably unnecessary for me to bother to write the opinion piece. To say all of those things. I can just think it.”

While he asserts he still holds his viewpoint taken in the column, van Onselen clarified his regret for it did not come because of the debate between himself and The Project panelist Carrie Bickmore and guest Amy Remeikis.

“They didn’t change my mind. I’m still very firm, personally, of the view that [Tame’s actions were] uncalled for, if I could put it that way. And inappropriate, and she shouldn’t have done it.

“That’s different I should say to saying that on reflection I wouldn’t have written the opinion piece because I didn’t like the blow back that I got, I don’t care about that. That’s not a reason I wouldn’t write it on reflection.

“Seeing how strongly people feel about it doesn’t change my view. But it probably has changed my view on whether it needed to be written.”

When prompted to explain further by Ravlic, van Onselen said writing the article became as bad as the actions Tame displayed in the first place.

He said:

“In a sense, me on my side of the ledge of society to write about it, became me being, I would argue – people won’t like this – as bad as Grace Tame choosing to act the way she acted, which I’m critical of.”

In his The Australian column written last Tuesday, van Onselen criticised why Tame would even attend the Australian of the Year event at the Prime Minister’s Lodge only to act, “ungracious, rude and childish”.

Later that day he appeared as a panellist for The Project, where a heated debate about Tame’s actions and van Onselen’s column ensued between Bickmore and Remeikis.