I WONDER if Family First thought this through.

By seeking to ban Ted Dawe's book Into the River, they have made the book world famous.

So smug were they in their self-righteousness, crusading against the evil author, they failed to see the obvious consequences. That book is now going to make the evil author a lot of money.

Family First - that is, the family as ordained by people who use one reference work and select only those passages that conform to their dogma - have decided they speak on behalf of us all when they seek to have the book's classification reviewed. In the meantime, none of us, regardless of age or intellect, can buy, borrow or read Into the River. To do so would break the law.

Advertisement

Personally, I have no desire to read the book - it's a long way down on my unread list - but I don't like some dirty-minded book-banner telling me what I can and can't read. Obviously, someone in Family First has read the book; after all, they have counted all the swear words. If they can read it, why can't I?

Family First is fighting a losing battle against the 21st century.

Fixated on the nuclear family and all the Stepford Wives values of 1962, Family First seeks to stem the tide of popular cultural direction by waving an ancient, heavily edited book at us.

It's in the public good, they say, to take this filthy work off the shelves.

The public, of course, are the small minority who subscribe to the Family First newsletter.

The rest of us are considered too dense to be able to decide what we can and can't read, or what our children can and can't read.

Or this was a clever ploy on the part of Ted Dawe? Getting a fringe lobby group to protest was the best marketing strategy he could have used.