Foot-in-Mouth Moment: Prostate Cancer Warning

The Australian Prime Minister's partner needs a lesson in decorum-or something. As one of the country's Men's Health Ambassadors, Tim Mathieson took theopportunity after a cricket match to encourage men to have prostate exams:

''We can get a blood test for it, but the digital examination is the only true way to get a correct reading on your prostate, so make sure you go and do that, and perhaps look for a small female Asian doctor is probably the best way.''

Referred to in the National Times as a "merry prankster sidekick," Mathieson has embarrassed himself before. When he met the Queen at Buckingham Palace for the second time, he said, "You again!" Proud of his quip, he told the press, who published the misstep widely.

Mathieson admitted that the joke was a mistake: "'On reflection I accept it was in poor taste. I apologize for any offense caused." 

But reactions are mixed. In a poll of almost 40,000, the National Times reports only 35% of respondents as offended.

Discussion Starters:

  • What's your reaction to Mathieson's joke? How would you have responded to the poll?
  • How do you assess his apology? What, if anything, else should he do to make up for the misstep?