Showing posts with label Gay Marriage Australia. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gay Marriage Australia. Show all posts

November 19, 2018

One of Australia's Leading Mags Shuts Down After It Refuses to Feature Same Sex Couples

One of Australia's leading wedding magazines is shutting down after it refused to feature same-sex couples. BBC
Luke and Carla Burrell, founders of White magazine, said advertisers had abandoned them in droves.
The Christian couple said they made the choice because they had "no desire to create a social, political or legal war".
Australia legalised gay marriage in December last year after the country overwhelmingly voted in favour of it. 
In a farewell post on its website, the magazine's founders said they had been targeted by "a flood of judgement," and that couples they featured had been sent online abuse.
"White Magazine has always been a secular publication, but as its publishers, we are Christian. We have no agenda but to love," they wrote.
"Like many people, we have had to reflect on our beliefs," the founders wrote. "It's a long and continuing journey." 
Photographer Lara Hotz, who shot three covers for the magazine, told media in August that it wasn't including gay couples - though it hadn't said so publically.
"It appears they are happy to take money, content and photographs from LGBTQI advertisers and contributors, but are yet to support and represent us in the same way as heterosexual couples are represented in the magazine," radio programme Hack quoted her as saying.
The photographer said she did not want to force the magazine to include same-sex weddings, but felt its stance should be made transparent.

Presentational white space

A Facebook post by White drew a mixed response, with some praising the founders for sticking to their principles, and others branding them homophobes who did not deserve to be in business. 
"It doesn't seem to me that your agenda is just to love, it seems like your agenda is just to love straight people," wrote Ruth Parker.
Another commenter, Cynthia McKenzie, said she felt the magazine's freedom of speech had been impeded, writing: "Unfortunately today if you have faith and don't agree with same-sex marriage, you can't run your own business the way you want."
White magazine is not the first enterprise to shut after a diversity row. Last month, an Oregon bakery that had refused to make a wedding cake for a lesbian couple closed down for good.

February 6, 2018

Opponents of Gay Marriage in Australia Happily Attend Their Daughter's Lesbian Wed. brings you the important LGBT news others ignore. Does not repost from gay sites [except onlywhen importat athlete comes out].Will post popular items with a different angle or to contribute to our readers🦊

HER parents voted ‘No’ in last years same-sex marriage postal vote. Her brother, Tony Abbott, actively campaigned against it.
But when Christine Forster married long-time partner Virginia Edwards last Friday, they were there to join the celebrations.
The only sad note was Christine wishing her father, Dick Abbott, who passed away just before Christmas, could have been there to celebrate.
But there were times that both the wedding — and having her family in attendance — seemed impossible, Christine told ABC’s Australian Story on Monday.
While some wonder how the former PM could have the hide to fight so hard against his sister having the right to marry, then front at the wedding., the nuptials showed not even diametrically-opposed views could overcome, in the end, the family bonds of the Abbotts, Christine and Virginia revealed.
“Tony and I, I hope, we have been able to demonstrate that even though we have diametrically opposed views, and sometimes one or the other might say something that really pisses the other off, ultimately you keep it respectful, you still love each other, you’re still family. And it’s not any reason to have a cataclysmic bust-up,” Christine said.
Even amid the regret for the heartbreak their journey to the altar had caused, Australian Story revealed lighter times: like how Tony was looking forward to a wedding he hadn’t yet been invited to.
“Still family: Virginia, Christine and Tony at the wedding. Picture: Supplied
“Still family: Virginia, Christine and Tony at the wedding. Picture: SuppliedSource:Supplied
And how mum, Fay, “resurrected” a navy dress for the wedding she’d bought “because I might have needed it for the Liberal party, before Tony got the knife”.
Watching footage off Abbott in the wake of the success of the Yes vote, in which Tony said: “I certainly don’t pretend to be an overnight convert to support the same sex marriage, but I am looking forward to attending the marriage of my sister Christine to her partner, Virginia.”. Christine was quick on the draw.
“And I thought that was a bit presumptuous. Um, you haven’t got your invitation yet, buddy,” she said.
“But I expect him to be there.”
It may have been touch and go at some times of the debate, but Christine revealed Abbott was always on the invite list.
In fact, as two families reeled from the bombshell of both women breaking up their marriages to be with each other, it was Tony and wife Margie who had been the first to welcome the Christine and Virginia into their home.
But the show revealed the pair’s journey was far from plain sailing.
FROM the outside, Christine Forster’s marriage looked perfect.
Husband, kids, love, great family, and friends.
Christine was the linchpin — the busy mum, The one who had her parents and grandparents over for dinner every Sunday.
Christine’s sister, Pip thought the marriage was “ideal”.
Until the bombshell.
In 2008, Christine and Virginia, both married, with six kids between them, met dropping their sons off at daycare.
The clicked, and quickly became best friends.
And then, they realised it was something more.
“I fell in love with her and I fell hard,” said Christine, who told Australian Story she had come to the “slow realisation” in her 30s that she was sexually attracted to women.
“It hit me like a tonne of bricks and it was terrifying. It was something I just couldn’t control, it was such an overwhelming emotion.”
Margie Abbott (left) and Tony with mum Fay Abbott during the wedding ceremony. Picture: AAP Image/Supplied by @inlightenphotograhy
Margie Abbott (left) and Tony with mum Fay Abbott during the wedding ceremony. Picture: AAP Image/Supplied by @inlightenphotograhySource:AAP 
“If I’d grown up in a bohemian environment, I probably would’ve come out at the age of 18 or 19, but I grew up in a family where your values were Menzies-era.
“You couldn’t consider being gay, that wasn’t part of our world.”
The two women wrestled with their realisation, and the devastating impact it would have on far more than just them.
They had an affair, then broke it off.
A year later they did the unthinkable.
“We had six children and two families that were going to be catastrophically blown off the planet by Christine and I doing what we needed to do, and that was to be together,” Virginia told Australian Story.
They announced they were each leaving the marriages. They’d met someone else. And they were gay.
“If I could have my time over again, I would have done many things differently. I made mistake, after mistake, after mistake which, I know, has hurt many of the people involved and … I really regret that,” Christine said.
“The girls were in their teens and that’s a particularly sensitive period for any girl. Here they are the girls are just getting to the point in their lives where they need their mum the most.
“And I was just caught up in something that, you know, a maelstrom of, of emotion and, and, and having to deal with, you know, the, this major crisis of my own. And I know that I wasn’t there for them when they, when they needed me.”
To say her parents were shocked was “and understatement”.
“I fell in love with her and I fell hard,” Christine says of Virginia. Picture: AAP/Supplied by @inlightenphotograhy
“I fell in love with her and I fell hard,” Christine says of Virginia. Picture: AAP/Supplied by @inlightenphotograhySource:AAP
“We had had marriage breakdowns in my family. My sister Pip’s marriage had ended, and that didn’t cause the seismic ructions that the end of my marriage did,” Christine said.
“Dad particularly expressed his unhappiness with what was happening.”
Virginia’s daughter hated Christine for the first year — “she was a friend that had been a part of the family and that had come in and almost taken my mum from my dad.”.
She’s says she softened when she saw the strength of the pair’s love.
Long before last year’s same-sex marriage debate, Christine and Tony had clashed publicly on the issue.
“Tony’s version of marriage is not the same as mine. End of story,” Christine said.
Yet Tony and wife Margie “got their heads around the whole bombshell probably quicker than any other members of my family,” Christine said.
They were first to welcome the new couple into their home.
“And we had these cycles of hope and then let down, hope and then let down in terms of political outcomes,” Christine said.
“And most of those let downs were due to my brother, to be honest.
“We’d all build up our hopes that we were going to get a conscience vote, and then Tony would kibosh it.”
When Tony questioned the role of her and Virginia as parents during a radio interview, Virginia had had enough.
She pulled him aside, furiously, privately.
“It’s not okay to use your sister as a political football,” she told him.
Tony told Australian Story it was“very sad, what happened”.
“But in the end, everyone has to accept that for Chris, things changed, and we have to adjust accordingly. We don’t have to agree with everyone, even our closest friends, even family members,” he said.
“I accept that people do disagree. It doesn’t mean they don’t like each other. It doesn’t mean they can’t love each other. We don’t have to agree with everyone, even our closest friends, even family members.”
As he walked into the wedding last week, he said he was looking forward to welcoming his sister-in-law to the family.
adamfoxie🦊 Celebrating 10 years of keeping on eye on the world

December 8, 2017

Australia Goes All The Way and Approves Same Sex Marriage

From Apartheid marriage to Same-Sex marriage in 13 years:

 Australia’s Parliament voted overwhelmingly to legalize same-sex marriage on Thursday, overcoming years of conservative resistance to enacting change that the public had made clear that it wanted.
The final approval in the House of Representatives, with just four votes against the bill, came three weeks after a national referendum showed strong public support for gay marriage. The Senate passed the legislation last week.
“This belongs to us all,” Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, a longtime supporter of same-sex marriage who had previously failed to get it legalized, said on Thursday. “This is Australia: fair, diverse, loving and filled with respect. For every one of us, this is a great day.”
After the vote, spectators in the public gallery began singing “I Am Australian,” a well-known anthem. Lawmakers stood and looked up at the gallery, some wiping tears from their eyes. 
The new law expands on earlier legislation that provided equality to same-sex couples in areas like government benefits, employment, and taxes, and it changes the definition of marriage from “the union of a man and a woman” to “the union of two people.” It automatically recognizes same-sex marriages from other countries.
Gay rights advocates praised the landmark vote even as they said it was long overdue. In a country where there had been 22 unsuccessful attempts in Parliament to legalize same-sex marriage since 2004, they said, the law should be seen as the triumph of a democracy learning to live up to its values.


Celebration at a bar in Sydney after the bill passed. The Australian public voted decisively for legalizing gay marriage in a nonbinding referendum last month. CreditDaniel Munoz/Getty Images 

“This is a big victory,” said Evan Wolfson, the founder of Freedom to Marry, which led the campaign for marriage equality in the United States. “It is a huge affirmation of the dignity of gay people in yet another country, and that will reverberate in the lives of people across Australia and the world.” A handful of lawmakers tried to add amendments that they said were meant to safeguard religious freedoms for opponents of same-sex marriage, but their efforts failed. Mr. Turnbull noted that nothing in the legislation requires ministers or other celebrants to oversee weddings of gay couples or threatens the charity status of religious groups that oppose same-sex marriage, two concerns the lawmakers had raised.
The final debate in the House of Representatives, which lasted four days, featured more than 100 speakers.
On the first day, there was a marriage proposal: Tim Wilson, a gay member of Parliament with the center-right Liberal Party, spoke of the struggles he and his partner, Ryan Bolger, had encountered as a couple, before choking up, finding him in the public gallery and asking: “Ryan Patrick Bolger, will you marry me?”
The answer came loud and clear — “yes” — as did public congratulations from the deputy speaker, Rob Mitchell.
That was followed by hours of emotional speeches, as politicians on the left and right fell into a rare moment of relative consensus and moving closer to public sentiment, which has favored same-sex marriage for years, according to polls.
Even former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, a staunch critic of same-sex marriage, seemed to have softened. 
“When it comes to same-sex marriage, some countries have introduced it via the courts, some via Parliament, and others — Ireland and now Australia — by a vote of the people,” Mr. Abbott said. “And that is the best way because it resolves this matter beyond doubt or quibble.”
For many lawmakers and gay-rights advocates working behind the scenes, the debate took on the feel of a communal reckoning with Australia’s long history of homophobia.
At one point, Adam Bandt, a Greens Party lawmaker from Melbourne, paused for a moment of silence after referring to the “innocent blood” of gay Australians who were hurt during the long battle for marriage equality.
Bill Shorten, the leader of the opposition Labor Party, asked for forgiveness “for the long delay, for the injustices and the indignities both great and small.”
He also paid tribute to a Labor Party colleague, Senator Penny Wong, a gay politician who he said had walked “a lonely road and a hard road” to help change Australia.
Passage came just weeks after 61 percent of voters in a nonbinding national referendum, conducted by mail, expressed support for same-sex marriage. Advocates for gay marriage assailed the Turnbull government’s decision to hold the referendum, calling it a delaying tactic intended to appease his party’s far-right faction.
“Our very identity has been the subject of public scrutiny and public debate,” Senator Wong said after the referendum results were announced. “Through this campaign, we have seen the best of our country and also the worst.”


Warren Entsch, a lawmaker with the governing Liberal Party, celebrating with Linda Burney of the opposition Labor Party after the bill passed. There were only four votes against the legislation.CreditLukas Coch/European Pressphoto Agency 

At her office in Parliament House this week, Ms. Wong said Mr. Turnbull’s decision to pursue the referendum had unleashed a campaign of fear-mongering and hate that she would struggle to forgive.
“It is a hard thing to have others judge whether you deserve to be equal,” she said. “And it is an even harder thing to have your family and your children besmirched by those who want to perpetuate discrimination.”
Many other gay Australians said they had been hurt and frustrated by the referendum process.
“The conversation around marriage equality was being dominated by those who were against it,” said Tristan Meecham, the artistic director of the performance company All the Queens Men and the founder of the Coming Back Out Ball, meant to encourage older gay Australians not to return to the closet.
Left out of the discussion, he added, were issues that go beyond marriage, such as the way older men and women deal with earlier traumas tied to prejudice and gay bashing, or suicide among teenagers dealing with issues of gender and sexuality.
“People need to realize that marriage is a certain thing for a certain part of the community, but the real social mission behind all of this is equality,” Mr. Meecham said. “And there is a lot of work that still needs to be done.”
Still, he said, he could not deny the sense of validation that the process had delivered.
“There’s a breathing process,” he said, “a relief, a cleansing.”
In Parliament after the vote, there was mostly jubilation and relief.
Hamish Taylor, 22, from Melbourne, walked out of the gallery and embraced his best friend in a bear hug. “I’m absolutely gobsmacked,” he said. “My heart is beating out of my chest. This debate has been in my life ever since I knew I was gay.”


Campaigners for same-sex marriage outside Parliament House before the vote on Thursday.CreditLukas Coch/Australian Associated Press, via Reuters 

Of the result, he said, “It’s alleviated a life of shame and embarrassment of who I am,” adding: “It’s just validated everyone’s love here and around Australia.”
In many countries where same-sex marriage is already legal, the tangible effects of institutional acceptance have become more visible, and positive, studies have found.
One study published earlier this year, in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, found that reducing societal stigma through marriage legalization had led to a 14 percent reduction in suicide attempts among lesbian, gay and bisexual teenagers.
Mr. Wolfson said that in both the United States and Spain, which legalized same-sex marriage in 2005, polls have found support for same-sex marriage growing instead of diminishing, a sign of the laws’ positive effects.
“Families are helped and no one is hurt,” he said. “The evidence is overwhelming.”
For now, though, Australia is more focused on the immediate, with the first legal same-sex weddings expected in early January.
In his chambers the day after proposing to his partner, Mr. Wilson seemed exhausted and relieved. He said that after many false starts, he was thrilled to finally be getting married in his hometown, Melbourne, early next year.
“People kept saying go and get married overseas, and we always took a very firm view that we couldn’t do that,” Mr. Wilson said. “We had to get married in our home city.”
He predicted a small, private and proud celebration.
By Damien Cave and Jacqueline Williams  
Damien Cave reported from Sydney and Jacqueline Williams from Canberra, Australia.

November 29, 2017

Australia's AG Tells Young People "There is Nothing Wrong With You"

Attorney-general George Brandis has told young gay Australians "there is nothing wrong with you" in a heartfelt speech supporting same-sex marriage in the Senate.
On Tuesday morning, Brandis brought to an end speeches from over 50 senators as part of the debate on a same-sex marriage bill that parliamentarians expect to pass.
Brandis said the passage of the bill will "demolish the last significant bastion of legal discrimination against people on the grounds of their sexuality".
"At last, Australia will no longer be insulting gay people by saying: different rules apply to you," he said. "After centuries of prejudice, discrimination, rejection, and ridicule, [this bill] is both an expiation for past wrongs and a final act of acceptance and embrace."
Brandis spoke at length of the pain and confusion often experienced by young gay people, saying the passage of marriage equality would send a message that ameliorated their hurt.
"I want to reflect for a moment on the message this will send, in particular, to young gay people: to the boy or girl who senses a difference from their friends, which they find difficult to understand and impossible to deal with," he said.
"In his first speech in the parliament, my friend Tim Wilson spoke movingly of his own experience of confronting that knowledge, as a tormenting fear 'that took an energetic 12-year-old and hollowed his confidence to eventually doubt his legitimate place in the world'.
"How many hundreds of thousands of young Australians have known that fear? How many have lived with it, silently and alone? How many have failed to come to terms with it and been overborne by it? By passing this bill, we are saying to those vulnerable young people: there is nothing wrong with you. You are not unusual. You are not abnormal. You are just you.
"There is nothing to be embarrassed about. There is nothing to be ashamed of. There is nothing to hide. You are a normal person and, like every other normal person, you have a need to love. How you love is how God made you. Whom you love is for you to decide and others to respect." 
Brandis made historical references through the speech, starting with the South Australian push to decriminalize homosexuality, which began in 1972. He also cited a 1989 essay by conservative writer Andrew Sullivan, Here Comes The Groom, saying: "It proved to be one of the most influential publications of the late 20th century because it kicked off the gay marriage debate."
Brandis said legalizing same-sex marriage would "stand as one of the signature achievements of the Turnbull Government".
"It rises above tawdry day-to-day politics as an imperishable legacy," he said. "If I may draw a comparison: nobody today remembers the arguments about the state of the economy, or the policy controversies or the political intrigues, that took place during the government of Harold Holt. Like all political ephemera, they have faded into history.
"But people do remember the 1967 referendum, that great act of inclusion of Indigenous Australians. As the years and decades pass, its significance only grows.
"And I predict that, like the 1967 referendum, this decision by the Australian people, enabled by their government and enacted by their parliament, will come to be seen as one of those occasional shining moments which stand out in our nation’s history, about which people will still speak with admiration in decades, indeed in centuries to come; one of those breakthroughs which have, as the wheel of history turns, defined us as a people."
Brandis described November 15, the day it was revealed Australians had voted "yes", as a triumphant and joyous day.
"Like all of the best and most enduring social change, it was not imposed from above," he said. "The will for it germinated in the hearts and minds of the people themselves. Now that the Australian people have spoken, it is for us, their elected representatives, to respond.
"And so, let us now complete the task which they have set us, and for which so many of us have worked for so long."
The ensuing vote to move to debate on amendments, carried on the voices, was in one way significant, as the first time either house has voted in favor of marriage equality. In another way, though, it marks just another procedural step along the complicated path to the bill becoming law.
The Senate is now debating a series of amendments to the same-sex marriage legislation.
Lane Sainty

November 15, 2017

Australia Said YES! to Gay Marriage

Australians have overwhelmingly voted in favour of legalising same-sex marriage in a historic poll.
The non-binding postal vote showed 61.6% of people favour allowing same-sex couples to wed, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said.
Jubilant supporters have been celebrating in public spaces, waving rainbow flags and singing and dancing.
A bill to change the law was introduced into the Senate late on Wednesday. It will now be debated for amendments. 
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said his government would aim to pass legislation in parliament by Christmas.
"[Australians] have spoken in their millions and they have voted overwhelmingly yes for marriage equality," Mr Turnbull said after the result was announced.
"They voted yes for fairness, yes for commitment, yes for love."
The issue only went to a voluntary postal vote after a long and bitter debate about amending Australia's Marriage Act.
The announcement prominent jubilant scenes across Australia
  • Penny Wong: Tears of joy from gay Australian senator  The result on Wednesday brings an end to what was at times a heated campaign. The vote itself had been criticised by same-sex marriage supporters, many of whom said it was unnecessary when parliament could debate the issue directly.

How did the vote unfold? 

The survey was voluntary, unlike Australia's compulsory elections.
More than 12.7 million people - about 79.5% of eligible voters - took part in the eight-week poll, which asked one question: "Should the marriage law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?"
The Yes campaign argued that it was a debate about equality. The No campaign put the focus on the definition of family, raising concerns about how issues like gender will be taught in schools. What were the results?
Australia's chief statistician David Kalisch said about 7.8 million people voted in support of same-sex marriage, with approximately 4.9 million against it.
He said participation was higher than 70% in 146 of Australia's 150 electorates. All but 17 electorates supported changing the law. t
"This is outstanding for a voluntary survey and well above other voluntary surveys conducted around the world," Mr Kalisch said.
"It shows how important this issue is to many Australians."

New battle begins

Hywel Griffith, BBC News Sydney correspondent
After months of divisive debate, Australia now has a result to confirm what most people here already knew - that a majority of Australians support same-sex marriage. 
The campaign turned ugly at times, with graffiti on walls and shouting matches at public meetings.
But now both sides have to move on. For the Yes campaign that means pressing the government to stick to its pledge of passing the law.
For the No campaign, it means lobbying over the wording of that legislation, and arguing for legal protection for those who continue to oppose gay marriage. 
While today will see parties in the streets and rainbow flags flying high, both sides know their battle is far from over. 

The electorates with the strongest Yes votes nationwide were the inner city areas of Melbourne and Sydney, with 84% voting in favour.

Map showing the Yes vote in the different states and territories

What happens next?

Mr Turnbull, a strong same-sex marriage supporter, is facing debate within his government over what the parliamentary bill should include.
Some conservative MPs want it to contain exemptions that would allow businesses opposed to same-sex marriage to refuse goods and services for weddings. Government Senator Dean Smith has introduced a private member's bill to the Senate that was co-signed by several members of other parties.
It will be debated in the chamber from Thursday.
Plans for a rival bill that pleased some conservatives have been scrapped, and those MPs say they will now focus on amending Mr Smith's bill.
Despite divisions within his own party over the issue and that fact that his embattled government has lost its parliamentary majority over a dual citizenship scandal, Mr Turnbull is expected to be able to get the legislation through.

What has been the reaction?

"This is an amazing outcome and we should all be very proud of this amazing country," Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce, a prominent same-sex marriage supporter, told a jubilant crowd in Sydney.
People listen to No campaigner Lyle Shelton speak after the result
Equality Campaign director Tiernan Brady told the BBC the result affirmed that Australia remained "the land of the fair go".
Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, a high-profile same-sex marriage opponent, said parliament should respect the result. He wrote on Facebook that he would support a bill that provided "freedom of conscience for all, not just the churches".
Another prominent No campaigner, Lyle Shelton, said: "We will now do what we can to guard against restrictions on freedom of speech and freedom of religion, to defend parents' rights, and to protect Australian kids from being exposed to radical LGBTIQ sex and gender education in the classrooms."

Why was the vote controversial? 

The postal survey followed two failed attempts by the government to hold a compulsory national vote that was twice voted down by the Senate. 
Senators who opposed the compulsory vote did not necessarily oppose legalisation, but said the vote would be costly and fuel hate campaigns. They argued the matter should be put to a parliamentary vote.
Many same-sex marriage advocates levelled the same criticism at the voluntary vote, which did not require legislative approval.

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