Open the gate, and let the “uglies” come flooding in…

// 19 August 2008

If you’re ugly, you’re obviously desperate. And if you’re a woman it’s likely you could be categorised as ugly at any moment, regardless of what you’re critic looks like himself, or if he even knows you, because you are public property. No matter that in civilised society no-one should consider it acceptable to make such disparaging comments about another person, especially those based on superficialities. Ho hum. I always thought beauty was subjective, in the eye of the beholder and all that malarky, but nope. Not according to John Moloney, the mayor of Mount Isa in Northern Queensland, a small region where men outnumber women by five to one. This progressive politician, obviously in touch with the needs of his people, made a plea for female “ugly duckilings” unable to find love, to up sticks and move to his town, where, basically “the beauty disadvantaged” are more or less guaranteed to get laid just because the men just don’t have the choice (and the women, are, of course, desperate).

He explained that while he’s “a bloke who respects women,” he thinks that this could provide “an opportunity for some lonely women.” There’s considerate. A mayor who cares about the real issues, not only those pertaining to his townsfolk but plain-faced uglies scattered around the Australian mainland. In providing an exposition of the benefits for the f-uglies likely to flock to the town, he claimed in the Townsville bulletin newspaper last week:

Quite often you will see walking down the street a lass who is not so attractive with a wide smile on her face. Whether it is recollection of something previous or anticipation for the next evening, there is a degree of happiness.

So, not only does he want ugly women to move to his town where “happiness awaits,” but he also thought while he was on his soap box he may as well berate the women currently living in Mount Isa for their unacceptable appearance.

Mount Isa is apparently a town populated by miners and cowboys, and so while it is described as “unique and progressive” on its official website, I for one am not ashamed to say I’m sceptical, especially owing to the desperate desire of the town’s mayor to ship in some “sub-standard” ladies for the fellas to play with.There’s something about this town which seriously unnerves me, just because I cannot imagine life is pleasant for the small percentage of women currently living there. According to the 2006 town census, there were just 819 women aged 20 – 24 living in Mount Isa out of a total population of 21, 412 people. Scary stuff. But perhaps the vast majority are moving away once they reach legal age because I’m not convinced local administration is likely to place great emphasis on women’s rights within the township. Anyone else agree?

Obviously his comments have precipitated a lot of negative attention from both sexes, and have greatly upset the women in his township who, hopefully, are packing their bags and driving on out of there as we speak. But instead of conceding that maybe he should not have been so ignorant/inconsiderate/arrogant, he decided to remain resolute. He said it because he was just “telling it like it is.” There we go then. Matter closed.

Now a confession: I found this story on the whole hilarious, primarily because of the refusal of Maloney to admit that he should have zipped up his cake hole before spewing out this pathetic diatribe, which made me, personally, see this as nothing more than a situation where a man, trying to be witty at the expense of others, in actual fact made himself look like a fool. Boomerang. Oh. Yes.

Comments From You

Arctic Firefox // Posted 20 August 2008 at 5:12 am

Believe it or not, the situation is even more absurd than it seems. Beyond the fact that Mayor Maloney is being a sexist prig, I’m pretty sure he made the statistics up!

I’m not sure why most journalists haven’t challenged the 5:1 ratio, but I did some research on the website of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), and here’s what I found, from the 2006 Census of Population and Housing:

1) The overall breakdown of Mount Isa’s populations is 47.4% female to 52.6% male. (Nationally, it’s 50.6% women to 49.4% men.) But that nowhere near the 5:1 ratio Maloney claimed.

2) In the 20-24 age group, the breakdown is 48.4% women to 51.6% men (better odds than the overall stats!).

3) This holds up even when you compare numbers of single men and women, both overall, AND in the 20-24 age group.

4) These stats have been relatively consistent for the last three censuses (2006, 2001, 1996).

So Mayor Maloney needs some lessons in numeracy as well as in male privilege.

Cecilia // Posted 20 August 2008 at 10:25 am

On a lighter note, in Metro a Mt Isa woman was interviewed on the subject and was quoted saying ‘the odds are good, but the goods are odd’…. make me laugh.

Maia // Posted 20 August 2008 at 11:46 am

I’ve been to Australia twice. The second time, me and a friend decided to drive all the way from Melbourne to Adelaide. A few people warned us against doing this, saying it was safer to fly, because there were lots of tiny, out-of-the-way places along the route inhabited mostly by “unbalanced middle-aged men”. We did drive because of course we wanted to see the country, and it was great and we made it, but they were certainly right about the unbalanced middle-aged men. And most of the road signs we passed seemed to be shot full of bullet holes! Not long after we got back to Britain, I saw the film “Wolf’s Creek” on telly one night. If I’d seen that before going to Australia I think I’d have cancelled the trip!

I found a lot of Australian men had much the same mentality as this moronic Mayor.

bel // Posted 21 August 2008 at 11:15 pm

I actually lived in a town smaller than Mt Isa and very near it. Women didn’t go in the local bar. There wasn’t alot of work for them, as most jobs were in agriculture and deemed not suitable…and the men, in general, were sexist pigs. In case anyone was thinking of emmigrating-I wouldn’t bother!

Have Your say

To comment, you must be registered with The F-Word. Not a member? Register. Already a member? Use the sign in button below

Sign in to the F-Word

Further Reading

Has The F-Word whet your appetite? Check out our Resources section, for listings of feminist blogs, campaigns, feminist networks in the UK, mailing lists, international and national websites and charities of interest.

Write for us!

Got something to say? Something to review? News to discuss? Well we want to hear from you! Click here for more info

  • The F-Word on Twitter
  • The F-Word on Facebook
  • Our XML Feeds