Greens leader Adam Bandt has refused to stand alongside the Australian national flag at a press conference — and says he normally removes the flag before he speaks.
A member of his staff was seen removing the flag from the behind the podium before the presser at the Commonwealth Parliamentary Offices in Sydney on Monday.
The move meant that only the Aboriginal flag and Torres Strait Island flag could be seen behind him as he spoke to the cameras.
Mr Bandt told Daily Mail Australia the nation’s flag reminds some people of Australia’s colonisation. …
— Isobel Roe (@isobelroe) June 20, 2022
A review of Mr Bandt’s previous TV interviews shows he always has the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags in the background, but never the nation’s flag.
Mr Bandt added later that the Union Jack symbol is hurtful to Indigenous Australians.
Adam Bandt’s refusal to stand in front of the Australian flag as Greens leader has been labelled divisive and “childish virtue-signalling” by Indigenous community leaders, who say it is contrary to the spirit of reconciliation.
Political opponents of Mr Bandt also questioned why Greens MPs would want to represent Australians in the federal parliament if they were ashamed of their own country.
It comes as the NSW government on Sunday announced that, by the end of the year, the Aboriginal flag would permanently fly alongside the Australian flag on the Sydney Harbour Bridge.
Virtue signaling has consequences.