Queensland Implements Hard Border As Sydney Covid-19 Cluster Grows
Queensland Implements Hard Border As Sydney Covid-19 Cluster Grows

OPINION: I thought you were better Queensland – I was wrong

They say never read the comments on social media if you value your sanity - but as an editor for a newspaper, it's quite literally part of the job.

I see the worst our society has to offer in online behaviour, but the last few days have really taken a toll.

When the Northern Beaches cluster began to grow, the spectre of border closures once again reared its head.

Before we go any further, let's make this clear - I fully support border closures, they have been proven to be a strong and effective measure to help slow the spread of this devastating virus.

But the reaction from a portion of our society to border closures is something I cannot support - it makes me sick.

As it became clear the border with New South Wales would be closed, forcing families to return home without spending Christmas with loved ones, social media once again proved itself to be the arsehole of the internet.

Was there sympathy for families facing the terrible choice to leave loved ones and come home? Some, but it was drowned out by pathetic comments that seemed to take utter glee at the thought of New South Wales once again being locked out of the state.

A close friend went to Sydney to spend the holidays with her family and friends - who she hadn't seen in almost a year.

She, like many others, then had to make a mad dash back to Queensland yesterday.

She'll now spend Christmas alone in her home isolating.

But according to many Queenslanders she should never have been allowed back.

There were even some comments that the hard border should be kept permanently to, as one moron put it, "keep the rabbits out".

There will be many people who will wake up this Christmas morning alone, and instead of showing a single ounce of humanity and sympathy for them, many of their fellow Queenslanders chose to cheer.

You can support the measure of closing borders while also acknowledging the heartache they course, it's not one or the other.

I wish I could put all this down to social media stupidity, bad attempts at jokes or even a reaction to what has been a shit-show of a year.

But I can't.

It seems to be the result of a culture that exists in Queensland - one that dismisses other Australians as "less than" those "lucky" enough to be born in the Sunshine State.

It's a culture I've had to handle for fourteen years since I arrived here.

From comments labelling me a "southerner" (despite coming from the Northern Territory) to be told to "go back to where you came from" for offering even the slightest criticism - it seems many in this state are ardent in their belief they are superior to their fellow Australians for the sole virtue of where they were born.

Even our politicians seem to get on this bandwagon - with our premier reportedly responding to the NSW premier's attempts to discuss border closures earlier this year by at first ignoring them, and then firing back a text making reference to the State of Origin result.

And no doubt there will be comments claiming this occurs in other states as well - and I'm sure it does, but it doesn't make it right.

It's time to grow up Queensland.

South Burnett

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