An Australian journalist was forced to issue an extreme dose of sarcasm to a male panel member who accused her of being “hysterical” live on TV during a debate about domestic violence.
During ABC's Q&A, the Australian version of Question Time, panelist Vanessa 'Van' Badham called out conservative radio announcer Steve Price, who attempted to downplay an incident where media personality Eddie McGuire joked about drowning sports journalist Caroline Wilson.
Audience member Tarang Chawla had asked how the media could help change cultural norms around society’s attitudes, citing a deeply personal experience where his sister was murdered in a domestic violence incident.
Attempting to explain how women, being part of a society where sexual harassment and violence are all-too commonplace, would interpret this ‘joke’ differently to men, Badham was interrupted by Price who became defensive when he felt she was implying he was involved in the jokes.
“Please don’t tar me with their brush,” he told her.
Badham went onto continue her point about cultural attitudes towards women, clearly moved by the issue, but Price continued to interrupt her, before deciding to go all the way and accuse her of being “hysterical”.
As visibly shocked audience members drew their breath, Badham turned to Price and said, dripping sarcasm:
It’s probably my ovaries making me do it, Steve.
Badham received a huge round of applause, after which Price appeared to shut up.
Watch the incident below - it begins at around 1.27 into the video:
Badham has since written a comment piece in the Guardian where she talks about the context of the conversation - free of mansplaining.