Brunswick mural stoush turns toxic
DEBATE online over a raunchy mural adorning the side of a carnival ride in Brunswick Heads has turned toxic.
The administrator of one community Facebook page, the Brunswick Heads Community page has even decided to remove several discussion threads regarding the mural due to instances inappropriate comments and cyber bullying.
The mural depicts a half-naked, buxom woman, accompanied by a beefy football player, ice-hockey player and high-speed race car driver.
Some members of the community claim the mural is "sexist", "suggestive" and "disgusting", including Byron comedian Mandy Nolan, who publicly slammed the mural on Facebook early last week.
Ms Nolan has since been the target of what she describes as cyber bullying with some comments even targeting her children.
The ride operator in turn has hit back after being compared to Harvey Weinstein. Defending the mural, CEO of McGregor's Family Carnival, Glenn McGregor, said he found the accusations "offensive and bullying".
"Do not put me in the same class as Harvey Weinstein. Don't tell me that I use Craig McLachlan to be the model for the painting, that's ridiculous," Mr McGregor said.
Ms Nolan said she knew her opinion would get a reaction, but was surprised at the venom in some comments she has copped on social media and that some would target her children.
"I have said nothing defamatory about anyone, including the ride owner, but certainly some of the reaction to me personally has been defamatory," she said.
"It amounts to cyber bullying but that does not work on me.
"The debate has shifted a long way from my original intention, which was to question what was an appropriate image to have adorning the front of a carnival ride at a family holiday destination.
"I'm shocked that there are still some women arguing so vehemently against women being portrayed in a more positive way in media and advertising.
"We have offered to re-paint the mural with a positive image, crowd funding the project and supplying an artist, but there has been no response about this as an option.
"It could be a positive national news story as it's not about them (McGregors) leaving town, but changing the mural to tell a more positive story about women. I hope for middle ground, but the owners are being bloody minded about it."
Prior to coming to Brunswick Heads this holiday period, Mr McGregor painted a T-shirt onto the woman to mollify some complaints.
In his first week of trade, Mr McGregor said he found himself surrounded by an angry mob attempting to intimidate and bully him into changing the mural completely.
He said Brunswick Heads was the only town on his circuit that had complained about the ride's mural.
"I work this ride 52 weeks of the year, all over Queensland predominately," he said. "I haven't had an issue in any other place except for Brunswick Heads, ever."