This is an extract from the speech given by Donna Ward at the launch of Australian Love Stories, edited by Cate Kennedy.
"Australian Love Stories... describes love at the domestic and intimate level but reveals Australians as a people who know about big love, a people who embrace difference, know about kindness and tolerance, offer succour to those in need, and attend to the environment that sustains us.
This book is a counterpoint to the Woolworth’s t-shirt. The t-shirt with the Australian flag across the top of it and below the flag, the line: If you don’t love it, leave it. Many think this is about racism but it is about so much more. It is about love and hate. It suggests if you dissent from a certain image of Australia you should go. Australian Love Stories suggests the opposite. It suggests that you stay and challenge bad behaviours precisely because you love the relationship you’re in, or the country in which you live. This book reveals Australia is so much more than a sporting nation, it is a nation of people who know what love is and who will stand in a state of love in order to transform hate. "