Ah, Michael Danby. Only interested in grubbing for votes from the Jewish community, but fuck the rest of his electorate. Peasant.
From a friend this week (Dec 13):
I called Michael Danby’s office this morning and was told that he “abstained” from the marriage equality vote on 19 September. I think the woman I spoke to then realised that she’d said too much and put me through to a professional PR person, who told me to put all my questions in writing, blah, blah, blah.
So at least we have an answer; he chose to “abstain”. I didn’t even know you could abstain in the parliamentary system. Maybe abstaining means just putting up your hand to go to the bathroom …
Most ironic of all is that he chose to “abstain” on marriage equality and then created headlines yesterday for his vicious attack against Bob Carr for abstaining on the Palestine vote.
Correct, the Sydney Morning Herald reported Danby attacking Carr for having abstained:
Mr Danby described Senator Carr’s actions over the UN vote last month – and Australia’s ultimate decision to abstain - as ‘‘unforgivable behaviour for any minister in any cabinet government.’’
I wish Danby would just say that he doesn’t give a rats arse about gays, that they can go to hell and that his political career, fueled by the Jewish vote, is the only thing important to his overgrown ego.
Danby, I’d tell you to kiss my hairy arse, but that’s a pleasure saved for my partner.
Campaigning on pointless promises is the third piece I’ve had published on The Stirrer.
Campaigning on pointless promises
Last night I got home from a solid workout at the gym, cooked myself a healthy dinner and sat down to read my emails. First cab off the ranks was a story in the Port Phillip Leader: Call for Port Phillip same-sex register. The story is about City of Port Phillip council candidate, Peter de Groot, campaigning in the Sandridge Ward, on the promise of a establishing a relationships register for same-sex couples if elected.
I would have thought this story more appropriate for the April 1 edition, but the date on the story is October 23 2012. You see, under the Relationships Act 2008 the Victorian government established a state-wide, legal relationships register, managed by the Victorian Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages. Read the history of this here.
I don’t see any benefit a new council-based relationships register could offer that a long established state-based relationships register doesn’t already offer. Council relationship registers don’t even confer formal legal relationship status per se.
To that end, campaigning on a platform that contains a well-intentioned but effectively useless promise smacks of a naive grab for the pink vote at best. If I was a voter in the Sandridge Ward, I’d be very cautious about voting for a candidate whose campaign platform included such empty election promises.
Rather than campaign on something useless like a council-based relationships register, a better way to spend rate-payers money would be on causes that actually benefit the community. Consider a safe space for queer youth, a support group for same-sex parents, an anti-homophobia/anti-transphobia campaign for the local community, a social group or friendly home visiting service for elderly, disabled or isolated GLBTIQ people, a queer orphans Christmas gathering, and so on.
Peter de Groot may well be a passionate human rights advocate, as his campaign page describes, but I would hope voters put the honesty, ethics, credibility and integrity of a candidate before their sexual orientation or demographic affiliation.
Michael Danby is the Federal MP for Melbourne Ports, an electorate that has sizeable Jewish and gay populations. He has taken a swing at ABC’s Q&A for hosting a show with Israeli content on the Jewish New Year, at a time when many in the Jewish community chose not to watch television due to religious observance.
Tony Jones, the host of Q&A, explained to that segment of Australia’s population that Q&A focusing half of its program on Monday night on Israel was because he could not get his guest Mr Pappe other than that night. Irving Wallach did a brave job on the program. But I question Mr Jones; the ABC managing director, Mark Scott; and indeed the new chairman, Jim Spigelman. This was a studied insult. Having an academically undistinguished extremist on Rosh Hashana is like having someone from Hizb ut-Tahrir advocate the abolition of Christianity and Australia on Christmas Eve.
At the same time Danby is a member of a political party that is led by the Prime Minister of Australia, Julia Gillard, who believes gay people should not have equal rights before the law. He also has colleagues, including the leader, who actively voted against the rights of gay people this week. Conveniently, Danby was absent during the vote.
I have yet to see a single word of support from Michael Danby for marriage equality, despite him being apparently supportive of it. Further, I have yet to see a statement showing Michael Danby’s outrage at the lack of support from his political colleagues for voting against their party platform.
Michael Danby. Put up or shut up, but don’t have it both ways.
From: Michael Barnett <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 14 September 2012 01:18
Subject: A letter on an important issue, for your consideration
To: Joe Hockey MP <email@example.com>
Dear Mr Hockey,
Please find attached a letter for your consideration.
I hope you have the time to afford a frank, personal and most importantly considered response.
September 14, 2012
Dear Mr Hockey,
Sixteen years ago this week, on a Tuesday afternoon in Canberra you delivered your maiden speech to the house. Please allow me to take you back to that day.
You spoke of wanting to make a difference:
I am in Canberra today because I want to make a contribution to the future of Australia.
You told us about your connection to the ANZACs who fought in Beersheba. You spoke of a country with a proud heritage and a strong connection to this past, and of leadership:
Our leader, General Harry Chauvel … had no choice but to infuse these young men with the belief that the future of the free world lay in their hands.
You told us why they were fighting, what it was they were putting their lives at risk for:
Their charge was more than courage. It was more than defiance against oppression. It was an act of pure faith in the future—and perhaps our finest illustration of that quality that we call the Australian spirit.
You quoted former Australian Prime Minister, George Reid on respect and vision:
There is no country in the world where the people are less paralysed by reverence to the past. There are no people in the world who have fewer fears for the future.
You pondered the connection between the ANZACs and those yet to be born Australian, and told us of the eternal nature of the spirit these brave men upheld:
One might ask what relevance that charge on Beersheba has on the Australians of today. I feel proud to be able to stand here and tell you that its spirit can still be touched by every Australian. I feel proud to think that future generations can have that same defiant spirit surging through their veins.
We heard you tell us never to give up, never to accept second best:
In many ways, Beersheba defines what it is like to be an Australian. To believe in yourself, to believe in the seemingly insurmountable, and to challenge the future.
You spoke of the uncertainty of the future, of changing attitudes and changing values:
Mr Acting Speaker, that future is all around us. The new millennium is approaching at a blinding pace and change is occurring exponentially. I suppose it is understandable for many that this change might be accompanied by growing uncertainty and angst. After all, family life is under increasing social pressure. Long accepted practices and traditions are constantly being questioned.
And then you spoke of the ideology you brought to public office, the ideology you believed would offer a way forward:
Perhaps many of us have forgotten the lesson of Beersheba. That is why I come to this parliament with the inherent belief that the answers to the challenges of the future lie in modern liberalism.
And told us of the values most important to you:
In an age where closely held beliefs and political ideology are frequently scoffed at, I wish to place on record the principles of modern liberalism that I hold dear. These include, firstly, the recognition of the inalienable rights of the individual; secondly, a belief in parliamentary democracy; thirdly, a commitment to improve our society through reform; and, finally, equality of opportunity for all of our citizens.
We heard about the formalisation of individual rights and the government’s place in securing this:
The first principle which recognises the rights of the individual was expressed in 1689 by the father of liberalism, John Locke. He wrote that the very substance of government should be the protection of individual rights, including specifically the rights of life, liberty and property.
And about social justice, liberty, disadvantage and giving a voice to those who were without one:
Despite the work of liberal and social philosophers such as Adam Smith, Jeremy Bentham, John Stuart Mill and Jean Jacques Rousseau, it was not until the end of the 19th century that the concept of social justice was introduced by John Dewey. He wrote that liberty is that secure release and fulfilment of personal potentialities which take place only in wide and manifold association with others. As part of the privilege of enjoying our individual rights, we have an obligation to protect and enhance our community. That includes helping the disadvantaged, caring for the sick, speaking for the voiceless and protecting the weak.
Then you told us about “new and improved”:
The third principle of modern liberalism is our belief in reform. Liberalism has traditionally steered a course between the extremism of the far Left and the reactionary conservatism of the far Right. Liberalism is most comfortable when it is developing new ideas and setting new goals.
And how important equality was to you:
The final finger on the hand of modern liberalism is the classic doctrine of equality of opportunity.
You spoke of your disdain for discrimination, of wanting to ensure future generations were free from it and of how this is a fundamental principle of the Liberal Party:
We cannot afford in our modern and complicated world to tie the hands of our children before they are born, because discrimination from the cradle will lead to discrimination until the grave. Equality of opportunity is a part of modern liberalism that will be most aggressively defended by my Liberal Party. It is the reason why so many of my colleagues in the class of 1996 are here from all parts of Australia. That is what I believe in; that is modern liberalism.
We heard of opportunity, human dignity and how important it was for you to involve your electorate in your journey:
A true Liberal was described by Sir John Carrick in 1967 as someone who was always concerned about the welfare of the individual, for the creation of opportunities, for the preservation of human dignity and the development of human personality. I have no doubt that these modern Liberal principles will benefit all Australians in the days ahead. Most particularly, I want to ensure that the electorate of North Sydney has a prominent role in defining that future.
You spoke of impediments to equality by way of the struggle for women’s rights:
One of these challenges is in the way our community continues to treat women. We should abandon the politically correct platitudes about equality, and honestly acknowledge that there remain entrenched societal and institutional impediments to women’s equal and active participation in either or both the home or work communities.
You spoke of generosity:
The Jesuits have taught me the value of community service and the spirit of giving.
And intellectual rigour:
And my friends and legal colleagues at Corrs Chambers Westgarth have taught me the lessons of professionalism, intellectual discipline and sheer hard work.
You spoke from the heart about your values, and those of Australians past, and their sacrifices, and their spirit:
Over the days of my career I am sure that the principles I hold dear—such as integrity, honesty and loyalty—will at times be sorely tested. But, at those times, I will recall the deeds of the men of Beersheba. I will recall their courage and their fortitude. I will recall the sacrifices that they made for our nation. And I will recall that great Australian fighting spirit.
And in closing you told us of your desire to do the best for all Australians:
Together with the support and encouragement of my colleagues and the inspiration and direction of modern liberalism, we will all begin our journey. We will charge our Beershebas and we will rebuild them—and this we will do for our children and for the generations of Australians ahead.
Mr Hockey, the values and vision you brought to office on September 10, 1996 were exemplary.
In having just relived your afternoon 16 years ago I now ask you to consider your position on marriage equality. Please keep reading.
Last December you said:
JOURNALIST: Do you support same sex marriage?
JOE HOCKEY: No.
JOURNALIST: So if there was a conscience vote you would be voting against it?
JOE HOCKEY: Yes.
JOURNALIST: What are the reasons behind your thinking on that?
JOE HOCKEY: I believe a marriage is between a man and a woman.
You are entitled to your beliefs, but Mr Hockey, in light of what you said in your maiden speech, about your grandfather who fought in Beersheeba alongside the other ANZACs, fighting for a free Australia, how can you justify this position?
You told us about Australia being a place of opportunity for all citizens, of having new ideas, of vision, of equality, of human dignity and of fighting oppression.
You spoke of the need for a defiant spirit, of reform, an opportunity for all of our citizens, for protection of individual rights and challenging the future.
You invoked the sacred legend of the ANZAC. You related their sacrifices and spoke of their spirit.
You spoke of questioning long accepted practices and traditions.
You spoke of the obligation to protect the community. Denying those who are not attracted to the opposite sex the same rights as everyone else further entrenches the belief that we are less worthy. This attitude has been proven to contribute to worse mental health and welfare outcomes for us. How is your position on marriage protecting the community in light of this?
Mr Hockey, I ask you how you can stand up before the people of North Sydney, of whom in 2010 69% were not opposed to marriage equality (49% “in favour”, 31% “against”, 20% “don’t care”) and say that you are representing their interests.
How can you honour the ANZAC legend when you uphold the removal of individual rights, liberty and equality?
Mr Hockey, I implore you to rethink your position on marriage equality. When you stand up as a representative before the people of North Sydney, and the people of Australia, and in the absence of intellectual rigour you subscribe to a position that is against the majority of your electorate and against every value you hold dear, you are not only just betraying yourself but you are betraying the values of the Liberal Party and the values of the entire nation, and in the worst possible way.
Mr Hockey, be generous. Support marriage equality.
In the lead up to the 2013 Australian federal election two prominent organisations in Australia’s Orthodox Jewish community have joined up to create a new religious force in Australia’s political sphere. After extensive consultation and introspection the Organisation of Rabbis of Australasia (ORA) and Kosher Australia (KA) have teamed up to form the Kosher Rabbis of Australia Party.
The party platform is founded on the complete kosherification of Australia, from the perspective of the Orthodox interpretation of Jewish law. At present Kosher Australia provides certification for products that are acceptable under Jewish dietary laws (kashrut). However should the party win a seat in government it will propose legislation to have all food and drinks labelled “Kosher”, “Mostly Kosher” or “Non Kosher (but we’ll certify kosher for an additional fee)“. The level of certification will be based on a sliding scale of fees. Halal certification will be permitted but only under the revised name “Kosher Halal”, and of course will be subject to an additional “co-Semitic” fee.
The party also proposes legislation to counter any form of activity that falls outside that acceptable to its strict Orthodox Jewish standards. This would include a ban on both trading and driving over the Jewish Sabbath and Jewish holy days, converting churches, mosques and other non-Jewish prayer halls into up-market residential developments, cancelling Christmas and Easter, making the sale of pig meat illegal, compulsory circumcision for all boys, modest attire for women, banning masturbation, strict alignment with Catholic clergy child-abuse cover-up tactics, and enforcing a no-sex before marriage policy (with a special emphasis of the latter being a pre-requisite for all members of parliament from the Prime Minister’s office down).
The ethos of the party demands a culture free of hypocrisy in Orthodox Judaism. It feels that if it is compelled to decry the legalisation of marriage between perverted couplings of homosexuals (and lesbians), it must also decry all activities in society that come in conflict with its unforgiving religious dogma. Party head (and Chef de Douche) Rabbi Moshe Gutnick, together with party Campaign and Propaganda Manager Rabbi Chaim Ingram, say there’s no room for double standards when it comes to interfering in the lives of Australian citizens and in particular vulnerable minority groups.
Look out for a complete list of candidates and policies on the party’s web site http://www.krap.org.au, soon to be launched. And remember the campaign slogan: “Making our Australia more Kosher for you, one snip at a time”.
STANDING COMMITTEE ON LEGAL AND CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS
11 April 2012
E-mail: mikeybear69 @ gmail.com
Marriage Equality Amendment Bill 2010
I am writing to acknowledge receipt of your submission to the above inquiry, and to advise that the committee has released it as a public document and numbered it as Submission No. a939. Any personal details, such as addresses and phone numbers, have been removed from your submission. Names have also been withheld where this has been requested. You are now free to circulate your submission to other parties should you wish to do so.
Documents provided to Senate committees become committee documents upon receipt, and it is the prerogative of the relevant committee to determine whether and how it will accept and publish such documents. In this inquiry, the committee will not be publishing on its website every submission received from individuals. That is because the committee is anticipating thousands of submissions and form/standard letters from individuals, and it is not physically possible for all of them to be published on the website due to staffing and resource limitations. As time and resources permit, the committee will publish a selection of individual submissions, representing a broad range of views that are indicative of the types of submissions that have been received by the committee. An equal number of individual submissions supporting and opposing the bill will be published.
All submissions received will be provided to members of the committee during the course of the inquiry for their consideration. At the conclusion of the committee’s inquiry, public submissions will be tabled in the Senate chamber as public documents.
Your submission is protected by parliamentary privilege. Parliamentary privilege refers to the special rights and immunities attached to the Parliament which are necessary for the discharge of parliamentary functions. This means that you cannot be prosecuted or disadvantaged because of anything you have provided in evidence, or because you gave such evidence.
International Holocaust Remembrance Day is January 27. The Jewish Holocaust Centre in Melbourne, Australia held a commemoration for this solemn occasion on Thursday January 25, 2012 (to avoid a clash with the Jewish Sabbath).
In keeping with the tradition of having a representative of the GLBT community to attend the commemoration, Colin Krycer of Aleph Melbourne accepted the invitation to light a candle in memory of the tens of thousands of homosexual men who were murdered at the hands of the Nazis.
Federal member for Kooyong, Josh Frydenberg MP, delivered the keynote address on the evening.
I feel compelled to express my reservations with the selection of Josh Frydenberg as keynote speaker at this event. My reservations stem from the fact that Josh Frydenberg wishes to deny equal rights for homosexual Australians and calls for a second-class status for the registration of same-sex relationships.
My view is that marriage is a unique relationship between a man and a woman. It is much more than a simple debate about preferred terminology.
Relationships between same sex couples are equally special but nevertheless by definition different.
These relationships are to be respected and valued for the love that they bring and the families that they build. However, the term marriage should not apply.
Civil unions, however, should be an alternative.
I know many people in our community, particularly those younger than me will not agree with my view on same sex marriage.
I hope they respect my view as I do theirs.
In the Holocaust homosexual men were denied equality and treated as lesser citizens, with reduced rights and status. There is no place for any discrimination against homosexual men and women in Australian society.
Aside from the possibility of a same-sex couple producing a biological child belonging to both parents, same-sex relationships are equal in every way to opposite-sex relationships, including those opposite-sex relationships where a biological child is not a viable or a desired option.
I ask Josh Frydenberg to understand this reality and to join the increasing ranks of Australians who understand that marriage equality, a definition of marriage that does not discriminate on the basis of gender, is in the best interests of all Australians.
Australian Marriage Equality have today issued a revised list of Australian politicians who are publicly supporting the call for Marriage Equality. Of particular interest (and pleasure) to me is the presence of the name of the ALP’s Federal member for Melbourne Ports, Michael Danby.
Prior to the 2010 Federal Election Michael Danby refused to speak specifically in favour of Marriage Equality. However he did allude to increased support for Marriage Equality from his party should it be successful in winning the election, as outlined in this media release from the then Secular Party candidate for Melbourne Ports Gregory Storer.
The next step Michael Danby needs to take is to make a public statement of his support for Marriage Equality, something that is noticeably missing from his web site.
Today in the office two of my colleagues embarked on a conversation about the news around Margaret Court that was dominating the Australian Open. Both of these colleagues are heterosexual, married men in their late forties / early fifties, both with a reasonably firm grip on reality and both people who would speak up against intolerance and discrimination. In fact one, of South African Indian background, lived through the oppression of the Apartheid regime.
The conversation started off by my South African colleague asking the other what the deal was with Margaret Court and the rainbow flag protests that were being reported in the news. My other colleague confidently said:
They need to pull her name off that stadium. There’s no room for that sort of bigotry in a country like this.
I was sitting next to my colleague when he said this. He’s not one to mince his words, and to hear this profoundly frank statement made me exceptionally proud to know him.
I posted the comment on Facebook (directly and via Twitter) as soon as what he had said sank in. In the subsequent 10 hours well over thirty people have ‘liked’ my colleague’s comment, shared it once and reposted it once. It has also attracted a range of supportive comments.
Clearly it has struck a chord.
I have to agree with my colleague. There is absolutely no room for this sort of bigotry in Australia. Increasingly the wider population is standing up to the hatred of homosexuality that has pervaded our society since the nation was founded.
It is incumbent on the leaders of our society, our governments, to fight the hatred and bigotry that same-sex attracted people face. It has to come from the very top, from the office of the Prime Minister. Sadly Prime Minister Gillard has, to date, shown herself to be completely lacking in the necessary skills to counter this hatred. Maybe she’ll discover them in time to make a difference during her ‘leadership’ but I won’t be holding my breath.
In the meantime I sit comfortable knowing that even if the leader of the nation has sold out to the homophobic right, there is an increasing number of heterosexual citizens who are prepared to stand up to the bigotry and hatred that their same-sex attracted compatriots are having to face.
Thank you to my colleague, and to every other heterosexual supporter fighting for our equality, our rights and our dignity.
Seven years after the Howard Liberal government introduced the delightfully discriminating Marriage Amendment Act (2004), we’re still rallying for marriage equality.
Tracy Bartram was guest of honour:
Federal Member of Parliament (The Greens) for Melbourne, Adam Bandt is a strong advocate for Marriage Equality. He had a few words to say about Marriage Equality (including how the Liberal Party has been noticeably absent at these rallies – Shame Liberal Party Shame):
There were even drag queens and a hot dancing boy (because sequins and lip-sync are necessary to help legislate away the hate):
I seem to be a recurring feature at these rallies, and so does my partner Gregory. We’re not married, but we are in a registered relationship in the state of Victoria. We’ve been in a relationship since November 2008. Why can’t we get married Julia?
Oh yeah, and in case you didn’t know, same-sex couples can now get married in New York (but not Australia!):
Julia Gillard came under attack recently by protesters who felt it was acceptable to call her a bitch. There are some who believe it’s not appropriate to use this sort of language in politics.
Our unmarried, female atheist Prime Minister, in a relationship with a man, doesn’t believe gays and lesbians should get married.
On gay marriage, Ms Gillard said: “I do find myself on the conservative side in this question.”
That’s like making the blacks sit at the back of the bus, Julia.
As long as Julia Gillard keeps treating those of us in same-sex relationships as second-class citizens, in a government-sanctioned sexual apartheid, I don’t believe she deserves an iota of sympathy or any defence when people hurl abuse at her. I’d go as far as to say she actually deserves it, and not at all because she’s a woman, but simply because she endorses discrimination.
Another Equal Love Rally came and went today. Thousands of queer Melburnians and supporters turned up to protest the discrimination that the Gillard Government forces down the throats of all Australians when it comes to marriage rights.
Every single Australian is affected by this discrimination, not just those people wanting to enter a same-sex marriage, or a marriage not defined by gender. The federal Marriage Act limits the choice of partner of every single Australian.
It’s time for the Gillard Government to stop pandering to the Christian and other religious fundamentalist bigots and start governing for all Australians, not just the ones that make her the most moist.
This week Star Observer‘s Andie Noonan flexed her journalistic prowess and went one or two steps further than the half-baked effort by the phantom staff reporter at the Australian Jewish News. Two weeks ago the AJN simply printed a lame rehash of the deeply offensive JCCV media release on addressing the Jewish community’s GLBT problem. The Star Observer’s story contains a well-rounded understanding of the situation and presents a number of perspectives, to help the reader better understand the issues. A far cry from the AJN’s limp coverage.
Why are the AJN always running scared of the JCCV? Does their editorial mandate prevent them from countering JCCV dictate when it comes to matters of homosexuality? Are the gays not allowed a voice?
Thanks Andie. It’s good to see some intelligent and balanced reporting. Keep keeping the bastards honest.