Is Penny Wong the new Ryan Gosling?


Sarah Oakes


Photo: Alex Ellinghausen / Fairfax

Those who saw Penny Wong's calm, reasoned and compassionate performance on SBS's marriage equality episode of Insight on Tuesday night will be girl-crushing on her harder than any other figure in Australian public life right now. They also won't be surprised at the emergence of a new Tumblr called HeyGirlPennyWong.

Admittedly only two posts long at the time of publishing, it's a riff off the incredibly popular blog Feminist Ryan Gosling (now a published book) that pairs images of the actor with feminist quotes aka "feminist theory flashcards from your favorite sensitive movie dude-turned-meme."

HeyGirlPenyWong mixes images of the Commonwealth Minister for Finance and Deregulation, with quotes on feminism and same-sex marriage.

It's got to have been tough for Senator Wong to stay silent on the issue of marriage equality during her time in office and with the prospect of a conscience vote in the first 100 days of a Kevin Rudd victory there's no time like the present to celebrate Australia's first openly lesbian member of the Australian cabinet.


While Penny Wong has the credentials to be a new Australian gay-feminist superhero we're not sure she'll gain the international traction of your-boyfriend-Ryan-Gosling. However she's definitely a candidate more worthy of a Hey Girl Tumblr than say, Tony Abbott, who's parody version is kind of a misfire. It's a sad fact that it would probably be a lot more funny if it wasn't so completely true.