Crikey, it’s the Irwins

Vanessa de Largie | The Spectator | June 21, 2021

The biggest takeaway from Andrew Denton’s 2003 interview with Steve Irwin on Enough Rope was how much Steve idolised his father Bob. They were not just a father and son team. They were best friends, business partners and soul mates. 

Before Terri, Bindi or Robert were even a blip on the radar in conservation. Bob Irwin was working as a plumber and rescuing injured animals and rehabilitating wildlife.  

In 1970, Bob Irwin purchased four acres of land in Queensland where he built Beerwah Reptile and Fauna Park with his own hands while living in a caravan with Steve’s mother, Lyn. 

This park that Bob built is now famously known as Australia Zoo, but sadly it appears that Bindi Irwin is suffering from amnesia and has forgotten where she comes from.   

The fact is Bindi’s cushy, privileged life in the media spotlight wouldn’t even exist if it weren’t for her grandfather Bob and his dream.  

For yesterday’s American Father’s Day, bitchy Bindi, decided to write a post about the “incredible fathers in her life” while maliciously and intentionally excluding Bob. In the post Bindi states: 

Appreciation post for the three most incredible fathers in my life. My dad, my husband and my father-in-law. My dad taught me the importance of strength when standing up for what I believe in and to have empathy for all living beings. My husband amazes me every day with his kind and steadfast heart, his love for our daughter is infinite. My father-in-law works tirelessly for his family and is always there with a word of encouragement. These extraordinary men inspire me and I love them so very much.

It’s pretty obvious who the abusive passive aggressive person is in the family.  And it’s not Bob.  Readers quickly picked up on Bindi’s bitch-vibe with one commenting:  “What about your grandfather?  You know, your father’s father?  He was a good man who I assume got the shaft.”

You can read Bindi’s response below. 

Bob Irwin’s biographer, Amanda French, who once worked at Australia Zoo responded to Bindi’s diatribe.

“To write that there is psychological abuse from the kindest, most beautiful soul I have ever met, is heartbreaking,” French said. “I have sat with him in hospital many times, lived with him, had him walk me down the aisle and he’s also our son’s Godfather. He is nothing but kind. He hasn’t seen you since you were 10. He has done all he knows how to do and that is to bury his head in the sand because that’s how he copes. He’s not someone who is out there about reaching out and communicating, he’s like your Dad was. An introvert and not someone who can navigate people well.”

“He loves your Dad, and you guys more than you know, this should be a private matter not written about on Facebook. I’m so disappointed to read this. It’s immature to write such words. We could turn this around and say he supported your family financially by handing you the keys to the very property he built with his bare hands,” she continued.

“For starters … he can’t even visit his own son’s grave or use any private family video or photographic footage of him. But he doesn’t speak up, he has continually asked to be left alone and played down this story. He doesn’t have long left on this earth, allow him the peace to just move on in his own way without name calling. I was with him the year he was sent a strange card from your Mum and a green shower cap. The next year it was a little girl’s green purse with $2 inside. So very confusing and strange. He’s the kind of person who’d give you the shirt off his back, or an ENTIRE zoo. Talk to the people who knew your dad. “ 

Steve Irwin’s niece,  Toni Johnstone (his sister Mandy’s daughter) also commented: “Uncle Steve would be furious reading Bindi’s comment if he were here today. I honestly cannot believe how she can write this and then preach, ‘Let’s be kind to one another’ in the same post”.”  

I’ve never believed in Bindi Irwin’s vomit-worthy sickly sweet persona that she shows to the world.  As an observer, I’ve always known it was a veil that hides something darker underneath. And on Sunday, Bindi showed Australia and the world who she really is.

One thing is a certainty, Steve Irwin would be devastated to see the atmosphere of family love and unity that was such a key to his success poisoned this way. And there’s a second ghastly truth. Thanks to the evil cocktail of reality TV and social media, we now live in a world that expects every little bit of dirty linen to be hung out for the world to see.