Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature

Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature
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Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature
Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature
Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature Home : Literature : Getting away with murder Phil Cleary's view on Australian politics, people, vfl and afl football, music, history and literature

 

 

 

Getting away with murder

SYDNEY MORNING HERALD

'Phil Cleary is a genuine Australian renaissance man. A champion footballer who entered parliament as an independent, went on to fight for legal justice for his murdered sister, and now demonstrates he is a gifted writer.

This book is a companion piece to Just Another Little Murder, Cleary's account of his sister's death and the subsequent verdict of manslaughter which had him campaigning against the absurdity of provocation as a defence for murder - particularly those involving ex-partners.

The story echoes that of Cleary's sister Vicki, who was stabbed by an ex-lover in 1987. It centres on Julie Ramage, who died by her estranged husband's hand. Cleary understands the dynamics of marital breakdown and he tells the story with a clarity of purpose; his is a cry for the justice system to be more just. This is a book that everyone who cares about fairness in the legal system should read. You will be outraged.'

 

Getting away with murder

Phil Cleary's book takes an awful subject and weaves it into a powerful, dramatic and human story that reinforces the now-accepted argument for law reform.

His compassion is obvious and he rightly displays his heart on his sleeve, which in this case is the only place any decent person would wear it. It is crucial that commentators and authors at times stand strongly for a principle, and Phil does that without equivocation.

Although I am not sure I agree with the class warfare he has as an underlying theme, I certainly endorse his argument about provocation and the treatment of women and victims through the court system.

One of the strengths of this latest book is that it tells a factual
story in the readable style of a novelist without undermining the
integrity or dignity of his message.


Neil Mitchell
Radio 3AW
Melbourne

Getting away with murder

The writing in Getting Away With Murder remains kind and sensitive, even though the language can be forceful. Phil Cleary becomes Julie's hero. I like the little parallels, coincidences and connections that run alongside the text - with Cleary's voice running gently throughout. The comments on the class divide are certainly more prevalent towards the end - I imagine that was what really influenced Neil Mitchell. I wouldn't call it 'warfare' though, more like facts that we don't usually think about or want to think about.

Elizabeth

Getting away with murder

I purchased your novel "Getting Away with Murder" and had to complete it in one go - could not put it down. Phil, I know nothing about the law, but I now know the injustice regarding the Law Of Provocation. I wept for Julie Ramage's family and all that was "dished out" to them during the trial but my anger for James Ramage and his high-flying crowd is worse. Like "Joe Cinque's Consolation " another book which made me angry, an incorrect verdict was reached.

Thank you for your effort in highlighting this law and hopefully it will be abolished so other women will not die because of it.

Good luck to you.

Bronwyn

Dear Mr Cleary

I have just finished reading your book Getting Away With Murder ” and found myself getting angrier and angrier with every page.  Never has a book had such an effect of me. I am appalled, disgusted and astonished that in the 21 st century such a draconian option for a defence is so easily and readily available.  That such a law exists in the first place is bad enough, but that it hasn’t been abolished before now is beyond belief.  
A law that existed in the 1700s has no place in today’s world.  A law that was brought about by men for men to make it “acceptable “ for a husband to murder his wife because she did something that men can do without a thought but is not acceptable for a women to do the same.  Unacceptable.

It has no place in today’s world and it had no place in 1987 either when your sister was murdered and her killer did the same thing as James Ramage.  Play the poor victim, broken hearted, ridiculed, oh woe is me, she made me do it.  How disgusting.

……….words fail me.

Then there was the trial itself.  I was appalled to read how Julie Garrett’s name, reputation and life was dragged through the mud and made her out to be the bad person in all this.  All she wanted to do was have her own life, find someone to give her the love and affection she craved that she never got from her cold bullying husband.  ……

Why is an innocent woman’s name allowed  to be portrayed so badly.  Why didn’t the prosecution stand up for Julie’s rights – for your sister’s rights, for all the women who have suffered – why did he meekly stand by and let the defence get away with the murder of her reputation and name, just as her husband had murdered her body.  What kind of judicial system allows this?

Why weren’t the jury allowed to know that James had been violent to Julie ……..And why should it seem too terrible for a woman to want to leave her marriage if she wants to.  Men do it all the time, why can’t women without fear.  Many women do leave their marriages for one reason or another I know, and nothing happens to them……….  Violence should never be acceptable and provocation should not be an excuse.  Violence is a choice – conscious or otherwise, there is always something that makes an ordinary man even in the heat of a highly charged emotional moment know how far they can go.  James and his like are NOT ordinary men.

Any why isn’t this plea of provocation which is so easily and readily available to men, not so easy for women.  Can’t work that one out.

I don’t know Julie or any of her family but I feel for them, her friends and all the women who have not only suffered the ultimate act of violence but have also been turned into the perpetrators of their own demise, been portrayed as the worst of women, dishonest, adulteress and a bad mother and wife to boot! 

I don’t know if the provocation defence is allowed in New Zealand where I live, I hope not.

I hope that the injustices that you have brought to light through your books will result in the abolition of the provocation defence – and soon before another woman suffers the same fate as your sister and Julie Garrett.

Regards

Larraine

Christchurch

New Zealand

A LETTER OF LOVE

I got to know her (Vicki) a little when she studied year 12? at Newlands High School. I have tears streaming as I put fingers to keyboard. I was in awe of your family, Ron the local butcher, Lorna a real mum.....I remember coming home with Donna and catching up on the afternoon soapie with her, little Elizabeth so cute, Donna’s older brothers you, Paul & Perry And of course beautiful Vicki. I remember her giving money to a year 7 student who was upset having lost the bus fare, not knowing how she was going to get home. Donna always spoke of Vicki when we were first friends in year 7.

Death too has knocked on my family’s door ..Please sent my love to Donna..Donna was the smartest in our class, reading Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit way before anybody else had. She had the greatest sense of humour, her intelligence and wit was amazing. I remember Donna skipping rope in PE, she taught us how to skip really fast, like boxer’s do. I still skip the “Donna Cleary” way.

Once again sorry really just doesn’t do it, but take solace that Beautiful Vicki touched many lives in her short life.

Helen

 

 

 

 


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