In a stunning development, Australian television viewers have been forced to process the disturbing revelation that apparently blind people are not naturally suited to ballroom dancing.
After Dancing With The Stars judge and well-known pants-removal enthusiast Todd McKenney cruelly pointed this out, blind Paralympian and adventurer Gerrard Gosens protested, enlisting the Herald Sun in his public campaign to have people with disabilities treated differently to everyone else. A fighting fund has now been set up to provide support for Gosens in his efforts to be judged by lower standards and be rewarded for inferior performance at every opportunity.
McKenney's "tactless attack" (sic) was one of the most flagrant examples of an arrogant celebrity shamelessly telling the obvious truth that has been seen in this country since Paul Keating famously told John Hewson that he looked "a bit like a sad horse".
Fans of the show have reacted angrily to McKenney's outburst, questioning the judgment of a man who, hired for the purpose of assessing the dancing talent of others, has the temerity to tell someone he's a bad dancer for no other reason than the fact he is very very bad at dancing. The fans have complained that Gosens was "humiliated", an outcome that surely nobody could have seen coming when a commercial television network put a blind man on a celebrity dancing show.
"Oops!" cried Channel Seven executives. "The blind man has been humiliated and made into a sort of horribly compelling freak show! How tragically removed from our original intentions this development is! Woe is us!"
In The Punch, Tory Maguire, taking a break from her usual occupation of informing us on how Telstra is improving all our lives, one completely unjustified fee at a time, has written what I thought was a reasonably sensical piece on this burning issue.
So, what have we learnt?
1. Gerard Gosens cannot dance
2. There is no need to publicly point this out just because he chose to enter a nationally broadcast dancing competition
3. Todd McKenney is a complete bastard
4. Tory Maguire is a more palatable read as a defender of brutally honest reality TV judges than as a morally repellent corporate apologist.
5. Dancing With The Stars is a microcosm of society in ways that we cannot even imagine and are unlikely to try.