Welcome to this website on social justice. I’m Joan Beckwith, and one of those people who have IDEAS in the middle of the night, many of which seem less amazing in the light of day, but some of which take hold. This website was one of those ideas, and came about when I realised that most of the work I have done as a psychologist and most of the issues I care most about involve social justice.

I decided to call this website 2020socialjustice because the cherished ideals are a bit like 20-20 hindsight, or 20-20 vision, representing a state of perfection that is unlikely to be achieved and yet is still worth working towards in whatever ways are possible. At this stage writing is possible for me though being on the front line is not.

2020 is also a time in the future, far enough away for substantial change, and near enough for realistic commitment. With this in mind, I decided to write this blog until at least 2020, produce at least 20x20 relevant posts by the end of that time, and complete at least 20 of those in any half-calendar year (including those on this website as well as those on the facebook page).

So, welcome to 2020socialjustice where you can:

The 2020socialjustice motto is that ‘thinking is important, being an expert is not, being right is unlikely’. Comments are very welcome through this website, via Facebook or Twitter, or by email to Joan Beckwith at 2020socialjustice@gmail.com.


Note: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are advised that this site may include images and other references to people who have passed away. It may also contain links to sites that may use images of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people now deceased.



In brief ...

Going for a walk…but not through the park

April 24th, 2015   

A woman is killed in a park – women are advised to stay out of parks. A woman is killed on the street – women are told to stay home. Women are killed at home – they should have left, the pundits say. Women are assaulted in immigration detention – they must have been “too provocative” it seems. This post suggests four ways to reshape the dominant narrative about violence against women…Joan Beckwith.

Read the whole post »


“TRUST US” on metadata retention has a hollow ring for whistleblowers

April 3rd, 2015   

Whistleblowing is not for the fainthearted and the new metadata retention laws in Australia add another layer of potential intimidation to an already precarious undertaking. Framed as making us safer from criminals and terrorists, they will have the effect of making us less safe from abuses of power by governments and other institutions. The pool of whistleblowers willing to report such abuses is unlikely to increase under conditions of mass surveillance…Joan Beckwith.

Read the whole post »


Learning about disability – from my cousin and my course

March 12th, 2015   

Guest post by Miranda Tooth (student award 2014-15)
My cousin has an intellectual disability. This is not how I think of her though. Instead, it’s her bubbly, enthusiastic and loving nature that first comes to my mind. Some of the things I have learnt from her, and also (more recently) from my combined degree course in psychology and social work are about the importance of social inclusion, the need to challenge assumptions, and that identity is more than (dis-)ability. These are the issues I discuss in my essay….Miranda Tooth.

Read the whole post »


Celebrating International Women’s Day…but what about the violence?

March 8th, 2015   

Elizabeth Potter’s father controlled her mother “with fists and madness”. When she tried to leave he had her committed. Kathryn Heyman’s mother could not escape, and decades later Kathryn fears we are heading back to “that dark country of the past”. On the other hand, a royal commission into violence is underway in Victoria, a significant report has been handed down in Queensland, and Rosie Batty is Australian of the Year. Are we making progress?

Read the whole post »


What would feminism (circa 1960) make of a transgender documentary (circa 2014)?

February 15th, 2015   

What sort of journey has feminism been on over the last five decades? No doubt volumes could be written on this topic, and I’m not silly enough to attempt an answer in a few hundred words of blogpost. All I really want to do is put the question on record as it arose for me from a video on transgender (2014) juxtaposed against another on (1960s) feminism…Joan Beckwith.

Read the whole post »


Having our say on Australia’s refugee intake (43 critical voices)

January 29th, 2015   

Australia’s response to refugees is of vital concern in a political climate of increasing contempt for human rights. The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) invited submissions on Australia’s future refugee intake, and this post (follow the link) contains my response to that invitation, and that of 42 other people who added their names to mine…Joan Beckwith.

Read the whole post »


Constitutional Recognition – “Yes”? or “NOOOOO!!”

January 23rd, 2015   

26 January – Australia Day for some, Survival Day/Invasion Day for others – and a good time to think about the proposed referendum on constitutional recognition of Aboriginal people. How do you vote ‘yes’ or ‘no’ on such an issue? Is there any way of reconciling conflicting positions – inside and outside the white establishment? How can we bridge the gap between the Recognise Campaign and the Freedom Summit – in conversations that honor 60,000 years of history?…Joan Beckwith.

Read the whole post »


Why should we care? About the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

January 11th, 2015   

There are many reasons to be concerned about the TPP, and perhaps the most concerning is the secrecy. At a time of low confidence in government, there is growing need to know what is happening behind the closed doors of international negotiations that will undoubedly affect everday life…Joan Beckwith.

Read the whole post »


NEW YEAR MESSAGE FOR TONY ABBOTT Social Justice Wishlist 2015

January 1st, 2015   

I GUESS YOU MUST KNOW BY NOW that your government is seriously on the nose – and not just with latte-lefties. As a way of helping turn things around, I asked people what was on their social justice wishlist for 2015. They came up with heaps of stuff you seem pretty clueless about, so I’ve cut it down to byte-size chunks. You can follow the link to see the ideas, and make comments. Everyone is welcome at 2020socialjustice BLUE-TIE-FREE ZONE…Joan Beckwith.

Read the whole post »


Doing a GISH GALLOP on lefty feminists

November 26th, 2014   

Have you heard of the Gish Gallop? I hadn’t either until I was complaining to a friend about the sweeping generalisations and jaw-dropping assertions made by Mark Latham (former leader of the Labor Party) in his recent polemic against “left feminists” and their putative dislike of children. The main point, though, is to raise an alert on the Gish Gallop and its popularity with current policy-makers…Joan Beckwith.

Read the whole post »


Go to all posts »