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Thread: The neverending Australian marriage equality circus of hate

  1. #1
    Cultured vulture Albedo's Avatar
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    The neverending Australian marriage equality circus of hate

    Australia is the odd one out amongst Anglophone countries (and much of the rest of the West) in still lacking marriage equality in 2017. Our PM Malcolm Turnbull, despite supposedly being pro-LGBT equality, has been terrified into silence by the socially conservative wing of his party, a wing that bears flagrantly unrepresentative power over our democratic process. Poll after poll has shown that a huge majority of Australians want marriage equality now, yet our nominally socially progressive PM has been paralysed for two years, unable to call for a free vote in parliament lest he lose his job.

    The latest brainfart from our dear leaders now is a 'postal plebiscite', basically an unrepresentative, non-scientific survey via mail, that will supposedly go out in the next two months to gauge the mood of the nation (everyone knows what the mood of the nation is), and IF it is returned with a 'yes' vote, THEN they'll hold a vote in parliament, at which some of the social conservatives have pledged to vote against marriage equality anyway, no matter the results.

    I just want to scream. Like so may commentators over here have pointed out, if you wanted to rig a survey to come back 'no' in a country that is strongly 'yes' for ME, you couldn't do better than what they're planning. A postal survey is much less likely to reach young people, who are more pro-marriage equality as a group but who move around often do to our precarious housing/rental market. The planning is also a real clusterfuck: for unfathomable reasons they've tasked the Australian Bureau of Statistics with holding this survey, a body with no experience holding elections, and there are doubts that the AEC (our actual electoral commission) can legally share the postal details of many voters who are regarded as 'silent electors', not having their details in the electoral register for various reasons, including personal safety. So that's another several hundred thousand people who might not receive their ballots in the first place.

    The whole thing is designed to return either an unrepresentative no vote, in which case they'll never allow the parliament to return to the issue again, or piss off so many people the return rate is pathetic, in which case they'll say "well OBVIOUSLY this is not an important issue to the Australian people," and use that as an excuse to never allow the parliament to return to the issue again. In the eventuality that it does actually succeed, half of them have already declared they're not bound by the results anyway.

    This is so sad. Holding this thing as a 'survey' means it's not subject to our electoral laws, either, which means there are no limits on how dishonest the advertising can get. Meaning we're about to be bombarded with slime about how gay parents are a menace to children, transgender people are trying to get into your bathroom and rape you, etc. This is all about punishing LGBT people for daring to keep asking for human rights. True equality won't be allowed in this country. Not while the current mob of religious sociopaths and their beached jellyfish of a leader are in power. A whole lot more older LGBT people are going to die without ever being able to marry. That's their design. Kids are going to face the most vicious, unrelenting anti-gay rhetoric this country has seen in decades. That's their design.
    Alex | Website | Twitter

  2. #2
    Live a poem...Or die a fool. \/ Beanie5's Avatar
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    Well said; Al. Legally enforcing second class citezens is deplorable.
    Live a poem. Or die a fool^

  3. #3
    newly weaponized be frank's Avatar
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    A couple of years ago, I found myself agreeing with an Andrew Bolt article in the Herald Sun (don't judge. I was in a cafe, waiting for my coffee, and it was the only thing to read). And my first thought was, "Oh my god. If I'm on the same side as Andrew Bolt, does that mean I'm on the wrong side of this issue?"

    Well, this morning I found myself in 100% agreement with an Amanda Vanstone opinion piece. I don't have any doubt about it this time. Glad to see her come out so vehemently against Tony Abbott and so enthusiastically in support of marriage equality.
    The early bird may catch the worm, but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.

    here be all the query exercises

  4. #4
    Cultured vulture Albedo's Avatar
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    And it's well and truly begun.

    Turnbull says 'cruel comments are part of the debate'
    Letters in a combination of Chinese and English have appeared in Sydney letterboxes calling homosexuality a “curse of death”, while posters on bus stops in Melbourne carried the slogan “stop the fags”.

    The material was “clear evidence that we’re in for a whole range of bile and offensive material,” Labor’s shadow Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus told ABC Radio on Tuesday.


    Because the postal survey is not considered to be a formal election, it is not covered by normal campaign rules contained in the Electoral Act.


    This means the advertising does not need to include a source. The Chinese/English letters did not have an attribution, while the Melbourne posters contained a link to a Neo-Nazi website.
    Of course, Turnbull doesn't agree with these comments. But don't worry, he's here to tell us:

    “In any democratic debate, [people will] often say things that are hurtful and unfair and sometimes cruel. But that is part of a debate.”
    A debate of a degree and type of cruelty that will never be aimed at him or anyone he loves (as far as I know).

    Fuck him. This is Turnbull's legacy: giving oxygen to the venomous gay hate that used to characterise this country and I stupid and naive enough to think could ever be burnt out.
    Alex | Website | Twitter

  5. #5
    please distract me mccardey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Albedo View Post
    This is Turnbull's legacy: giving oxygen to the venomous gay hate that used to characterise this country and I stupid and naive enough to think could ever be burnt out.
    Hell of a legacy. Especially given that he could have joined either party, because he was actually a centrist. But he joined the one that gave him most chance of being The Winner Is - !

    What a disappointment the man has been.

  6. #6
    Perpetually in transit Helix's Avatar
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    In the lead up to the vote, City of Darebin (Melbourne) has decided to offer free resources to LGBITQ groups. (Darebin has also dumped Australia Day.)


  7. #7
    newly weaponized be frank's Avatar
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    I'm so fucking angry at Turnbull over this.

    After his initial response to people's legitimate worry about this farce bringing out the hate speech with, "That's the weakest of reasons to oppose the [at that stage] plebiscite. This will be a respectful debate," now there is vile bullshit being spewed by some in the "no" camp, he was on LGBT radio today being all, "Well, you can't ask for respect if you don't show respect."

    Which to me sounded awfully reminiscent of: "Many sides. Many sides."

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Helix View Post
    In the lead up to the vote, City of Darebin (Melbourne) has decided to offer free resources to LGBITQ groups. (Darebin has also dumped Australia Day.)
    Daniel Andrews also added half a mill to LGBTQI support services.
    Last edited by be frank; 08-22-2017 at 12:23 PM.
    The early bird may catch the worm, but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.

    here be all the query exercises

  8. #8
    Cultured vulture Albedo's Avatar
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    Sponke the monkey. Behold, the Respectful Debate™ this great country is capable of. And in three languages!



    https://twitter.com/coopesdetat/stat...29205438152705
    Alex | Website | Twitter

  9. #9
    practical experience, FTW neandermagnon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Albedo View Post
    Sponke the monkey. Behold, the Respectful Debate™ this great country is capable of. And in three languages!



    https://twitter.com/coopesdetat/stat...29205438152705
    That's not Arabic. I think it's supposed to be Arabic. If you read it from left to right, the first few letters on each line spell out "don't vote Labour" but it reads like this:
    RUOBAL ETOV TNOD

    because a) Arabic's supposed to be written from right to left and b) each letter is in its individual/stand-alone form. Arabic is a cursive script and letters join together and there are four forms of each letter depending on where it is in the word (initial, medial, final, stand-alone) so you have no idea just how silly it looks when you have a string of letters all in stand-alone form and all written from left to right. The above example of block capitals back to front English doesn't fully convey it, because block capitals isn't incorrect in English, if the context is appropriate, but it's never ever correct in Arabic. Ever.

    To get an idea of what "don't vote Labour" is supposed to look like in Arabic script, google translate gives the same phrase if you translate "don't vote Labour" from English to Arabic. See how very, very different it looks and get an idea of just how incorrect and bizarre the "Arabic script" in that poster is.

    So therefore I disagree with your assertion that this Respectful Debate TM is being conducted in three languages. I wouldn't even say two without first consulting with the people who's language has probably been mangled half to death on the second line. The quality of English on the first line isn't all that. Maybe it gets worse the lower down the lines you go?


    On a more practical note... what can we do here in the UK to help?
    Last edited by neandermagnon; 09-04-2017 at 04:58 PM.
    my blog - cave people and stuff - an imaginative look at palaeolithic life: http://cavepeopleandstuff.wordpress.com/

  10. #10
    Cultured vulture Albedo's Avatar
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    I thought something looked funny about the Arabic script. And wait, did they auto-translate it and somehow write it backwards, or did they actually transcribe the English copy letter for letter into backwards Arabic letters? Because that would be even more pathetic.

    As to what you can do: besides showing solidarity with LGBTI Australians, overseas friends should gently rib Aussies every chance you get about being the only English speaking Western country that hasn't dealt with this yet. Because we might not do the right thing just because it's right, but we'll do it eventually if everyone else is doing it.

  11. #11
    newly weaponized be frank's Avatar
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    The High Court was due to release its decision on the postal survey 5 minutes ago.

    The High Court's website has crashed.
    Last edited by be frank; 09-07-2017 at 08:50 AM.
    The early bird may catch the worm, but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.

    here be all the query exercises

  12. #12
    please distract me mccardey's Avatar
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    They've released it. It's on.

  13. #13
    newly weaponized be frank's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mccardey View Post
    They've released it. It's on.
    Ironically, my AW crashed right as I tried to post that update.

    FFS, High Court.
    The early bird may catch the worm, but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.

    here be all the query exercises

  14. #14
    please distract me mccardey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by be frank View Post

    FFS, High Court.
    Yes, this.

  15. #15
    newly weaponized be frank's Avatar
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    What mental legal acrobatics did they have to do to decide this is "urgent and unexpected" and worthy of $122m of taxpayer's money?

    From Fairfax's Mark Kenny:

    The piecemeal postal survey, a camel created from the political ruins of cynical delay and moral recalcitrance, was the brainchild of Peter Dutton.
    Says everything, really.
    Last edited by be frank; 09-07-2017 at 09:26 AM.
    The early bird may catch the worm, but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.

    here be all the query exercises

  16. #16
    Live a poem...Or die a fool. \/ Beanie5's Avatar
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    Arrgh!
    they should amend it to add a question on weather politicions should be allowed to marry
    Last edited by Beanie5; 09-07-2017 at 09:34 AM.
    Live a poem. Or die a fool^

  17. #17
    please distract me mccardey's Avatar
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    Or seatbelts.

    ETA: Explanatory link for non-Aussies.
    Last edited by mccardey; 09-07-2017 at 09:44 AM.

  18. #18
    newly weaponized be frank's Avatar
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    Unrelated, all cars should be equipped with those cute rainbow seat belts from now on.
    The early bird may catch the worm, but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.

    here be all the query exercises

  19. #19
    Cultured vulture Albedo's Avatar
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    I want to be optimistic, but I can see so many ways for this to go badly now. Non-binding postal survey or not, a win for 'no' is going to be a disaster.

  20. #20
    Cultured vulture Albedo's Avatar
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    Catching snatches of Abetzz being interviewed on 730, it seems the 'No' argument is cementing in place. Their strategy is to claim that in every country where same sex marriage has been legalised, there has been a loss of freedom of speech and religion. Can anyone from one of those countries please confirm or deny? Have your lives in fact become an unceasing Orwellian nightmare since SSM arrived? Because this, apparently, is what we're worried about in Australia, in 2017.
    Alex | Website | Twitter

  21. #21
    Cultured vulture Albedo's Avatar
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    Or at least, that's what senators from our governing party feel comfortable going on national television and lying through their hateful faces about.
    Alex | Website | Twitter

  22. #22
    newly weaponized be frank's Avatar
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    I'm still yet to hear anyone ask them what exactly they mean by "freedom of religion."

    You mean, you believe that your religious "laws" should take precedence over the nation's civil laws?
    Yes.
    So you must also believe the same holds true for other religions. Frex, that Muslims should be able to follow Sharia law over Australian law.
    No.
    So ... you're not worried about "religious" freedom then at all really, are you? Only Christians?
    Um.
    The early bird may catch the worm, but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.

    here be all the query exercises

  23. #23
    Cultured vulture Albedo's Avatar
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    Oh, they're very careful not to specify what freedoms they're talking about. Very, very careful.

    David Marr says it all, really.
    Australia is being taught an old lesson all over again. The delay, the cost and the years of bitter debate are worth it according to the warriors of no to remind Australians that change in this country is hard, hard work.

    This is nothing new but it’s marking us now. We’re a middle-of-the-road country with ambitions for change caught in a political culture that’s come to see its mission as preventing the future.


    Equal marriage is just the latest occasion for displaying the clout of the reactionaries. Though they know, in the end, they probably won’t be able to bring change to a halt, they want us to know the ground rules here: change in this country only comes with a great deal of pain.
    It's all about pain. The reactionaries know they'll lose one day, so first they want to hurt those they hate as much as they can. They want the freedom to hurt.
    Alex | Website | Twitter

  24. #24
    practical experience, FTW neandermagnon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mccardey View Post
    Or seatbelts.

    ETA: Explanatory link for non-Aussies.
    I wish I could teach them real biology.

    One word: bonobos
    my blog - cave people and stuff - an imaginative look at palaeolithic life: http://cavepeopleandstuff.wordpress.com/

  25. #25
    practical experience, FTW neandermagnon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Albedo View Post
    Catching snatches of Abetzz being interviewed on 730, it seems the 'No' argument is cementing in place. Their strategy is to claim that in every country where same sex marriage has been legalised, there has been a loss of freedom of speech and religion. Can anyone from one of those countries please confirm or deny? Have your lives in fact become an unceasing Orwellian nightmare since SSM arrived? Because this, apparently, is what we're worried about in Australia, in 2017.
    Utter bollocks as far as the UK's concerned. No-one's stopped anyone from any religion going to church/synagogue/masjid/etc or saying "I don't approve of gay relationships" as a personal opinion or "homosexuality is against my religion" as a belief they're not using to infringe the rights of others. There was a case where a business got in trouble for not serving a gay couple (they wouldn't sell them a cake, might have been a wedding cake or just a cake with a nice happy message for them), because the anti-discrimination laws mean that businesses aren't allowed to discriminate based on ethnicity, gender, sexuality, disability and a whole list of categories. I'm sure the people who ran that business feel that their freedom of religion was impinged upon, but it wasn't. No-one prevented them from going to whatever place of worship they wanted to or believe what they want to. They were prevented from discriminating against customers based on their sexuality, something which is illegal under discrimination laws which existed before gay marriage was legalised.

    It reminds me of this thing I saw on Facebook:

    Alt right: let's commit genocide
    Antifa: let's not
    Black Lives Matter: please stop shooting us!
    Centrist: I don't know the difference between these

    Can people really not tell the difference between "no-one should ever be allowed any marriage apart from a heterosexual marriage because I'm not comfortable with the idea of non-heterosexual relationships" and "I just want to marry the person I've loved for so long"?

    I'm wondering if a consumer boycott might work... as in if all the gay bars in the UK and maybe other places were to stop buying/selling Australian alcoholic drinks, would that impact the Australian economy enough? The pink pound is pretty big over here. (The cynic in me is inclined to think that the only reason David Cameron made gay marriage legal is because of the economic boost of the pink pound and lots of elaborate gay weddings... probably unfair of me to be so cynical, but he is a Tory.) If you also have LGBT+ people and allies joining in the boycott, as in choosing wines and lagers from other regions, that would add to it. Or maybe I'm just thinking that way because our Conservatives/Tories are financial conservatives but aren't all that socially conservative* so anything that impacts the economy is likely to work. You'd know better whether this is likely to work or not.

    *except when Theresa May jumps straight into bed with the DUP in a desperate attempt to cling on to the thinnest threads of power... but even then the leader of the Scottish Conservatives made damn sure the coalition wasn't going to infringe on LGBT+ rights. (Being extremely thankful for them being, for the most part, not socially conservative as I'm pretty horrified at what I'm reading here and also what's going on in the USA with all kinds of prejudice and discrimination not just homophobia.)
    Last edited by neandermagnon; 09-08-2017 at 01:02 AM.
    my blog - cave people and stuff - an imaginative look at palaeolithic life: http://cavepeopleandstuff.wordpress.com/

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