Politics

Forget PvO’s Take, Grace Tame Has Finally Broken Her Silence On The ScoMo Photo Op

“What I did wasn’t an act of martyrdom in the gender culture war."

grace tame

Want more Junkee in your life? Sign up to our newsletter, and follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook so you always know where to find us.

Grace Tame has finally broken her silence on her photo op with Scott Morrison last week, in which she went viral for refusing to smile when she was clearly uncomfortable.

Tame and her partner Max Heerey attended an Australian of the Year morning tea at The Lodge last Tuesday, marking her last day in the role before she handed the title over to tennis legend Dylan Alcott.

A week later, Tame addressed the photo op — which has since become a national conversation with some truly horrible takes bubbling to the surface — noting that it “wasn’t an act of martyrdom.”

“The survival of abuse culture is dependent on submissive smiles and self-defeating surrenders. It is dependent on hypocrisy,” tweeted Tame on Wednesday. “My past is only relevant to the extent that I have seen — in fact I have worn — the consequences of civility for the sake of civility.

“What I did wasn’t an act of martyrdom in the gender culture war. It’s true that many women are sick of being told to smile, often by men, for the benefit of men. But it’s not just women who are conditioned to smile and conform to the visibly rotting status-quo. It’s all of us.”

Her response comes after Morrison commented on the encounter on Friday, asserting that he and wife Jenny always “greet them with a smile” when somebody visits the lodge.

In his speech on the situation, he claimed “she’s had a terrible life” and asserted that his government has done more than any other on the issue of sexual violence.

“It’s just awful and I know a lot of Australians, me included, support her efforts to ensure that these issues can be raised and addressed,” said Morrison. “Our government has done more than any other government on this issue and that is in part because of the strong focus that has been brought to these issues and the response that we’ve made.”

Tame’s tenure as Australian of the Year is over, but her philanthropic work to prevent child sex abuse continues through The Grace Tame Foundation.