Old Bill is in a spot of bother at the moment and I think that the media has it all wrong. And as usual, I am here to set the record straight.
This is the story as reported over the weekend:
"The Rag tabloids reported today that Senator Heffernan allegedly hit senior Liberal staffer Ray Carter and abused him for being homosexual at a meeting of the NSW Liberal Party State Executive.
Mr Carter is understood to have made a statutory declaration detailing the incident on May 3 at the Breakers Country Club in Terrigal on the NSW Central Coast and wants serious action taken against Senator Heffernan.
It is alleged that during the meeting Senator Heffernan struck Mr Carter so hard he was knocked off balance. Later, when Mr Carter was alone, Senator Heffernan is alleged to have quietly said to him: "I didn't know you were a poofter."
Where's the problem? Two blokes have a disagreement, the bigger of the two shoves the smaller one, verbal jousting commences. It's a normal Thursday night at any pub in Australia. But the problem is that Mr Carter is claiming he was the victim of a hate crime and abused because of his choice of bed fellow.
Mr Carter, poor Mr Carter. If you had red hair and Bill called you 'ranga would you cry? If he had called you fatty-boombalada would you have cried hate crime? If you were a slightly build wisp of a man with coke bottle shoulders and Bill called you wimpy would you have bleated? I would like to say here and now MAN UP MR CARTER or HARDEN UP MR CARTER but I fear he might take it the wrong way so I will say STICKS AND STONES MR CARTER, STICKS AND STONES!!
Are you a proud homosexual man? Good on ya. If that is who you are be proud of it, but please stop being offended when someone points it out. Sure Bill could have used a different word.....I don't know what that word is and I am damn sure Bill wouldn't either but that is beside the point. If you are gay please don't be offended when someone like Bill acknowledges your gaiety. Where Bill lives there arent many gay men and Bill is sometimes all at sea as to how to deal with the situation.
But I have been thinking about this and there is another possibility which none in the paid media has picked up on and it is all in the way and context something is said--could Bill have been fishing for a new friend?? Could he have said "I didn't know you were a poofter" as a kind of invitation to a meeting later at a table reserved for only two. He may have thought the line "Wow Ray, I didn't know you liked HO gauge steam trains too. You should come over and see if your Lima 422 Class would fit in my tunnel" sounded a bit airy fairy and just came out with poofter line. Makes sense. The facts are there; a bit of wrestling and light slap and tickle before hand, the line in question was whispered and it was said when they were all alone. There was nothing offensive there providing what Bill was offering was done in the privacy of his hotel room or abode.
Can we move on now?
Heffernan: Never could get a handle on pole dancing, no matter how hard he tried.