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Image for Thousands march for same-sex marriage

Thousands march for same-sexmarriage

Over 4,000 people took to the streets in Melbourne, over 1,000 rallied in Sydney, and many more protested in Brisbane, Wollongong, Canberra, Adelaide and Perth this afternoon as the ongoing fight for same-sex marriage continues across Australia.

Lord of the Rings’ wizard star Sir Ian McKellen stirred the Melbourne crowd outside the Victorian State Library with his coming out story, telling the crowd why the ongoing struggle for LGBT equality around the world is so important to him. One of the biggest petitions ever presented in the nation, 100,000 signatures from Australian citizens demanding equal marriage rights for all Australians was presented to Senator Sarah Hanson-Young. The assembled protesters also enjoyed a show from drag diva Pollyfilla (pictured).

Meanwhile in Sydney, gay radio personality and newsreader on 2dayFM Geoff Field MC’ed a 1,000-strong rally outside the Town Hall. An audio message from Dannii Minogue pledging her total support for the casue was played to the cheering throng. Armed with a mixture of signs, banners, and a giant rainbow flag, the rally then made its way noisily through the streets of central Sydney to Hyde Park, where a 100,000 signature petition supporting same-sex marriage was handed to a Green MP to present to parliament, before gender-free campaigner Norrie May-Welby performed a show.

Community Action Against Homophobia (CAAH) co-convenor Ben Cooper tells Same Same he’s very happy with the crowd numbers in Sydney, which are easily double those of the last rally back in March.

Other major Australian cities also held marches, with many including light-hearted ‘kiss in’ photo opportunities.

Another day of protest action is planned for 14 August, marking the anniversary of the date former Prime Minister John Howard sought to outlaw same-sex marriage Australia-wide.

Check out Same Same’s gallery of images from this afternoon’s rally in Sydney.

UPDATE: Photos from the Melbourne rally are here.

And take a look at our gallery from Brisbane’s same-sex marriage protest event here.

Social

Comments

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pantone801

pantone801 said on the 15th May, 2010

I wish I was in Australia for this. Great work guys! Keep up the fight.

weathervain

weathervain said on the 15th May, 2010

They actually had interesting people with Charisma rather than socialists smelling like old cheese playing bongos and whinging about refugees.

C'mon focus people!

Swish it up!

Zakalwe

Zakalwe said on the 15th May, 2010

They actually had interesting people with Charisma rather than socialists smelling like old cheese playing bongos and whinging about refugees.

C'mon focus people!

Swish it up!

I suspected this would be the case, and it's why I didn't go.

weathervain

weathervain said on the 15th May, 2010

Well then maybe you ought not spend it in the barossa

rudeboy86

rudeboy86 said on the 15th May, 2010

I tried calling a mate but he was doing stuff for JOY FM at the rally...I think he was vox popping people.

jamesv

jamesv said on the 15th May, 2010

The melbourne rally had about 4000 people!! The 100 000 petition was at the melbourne rally not in Sydney. What a great day, everywhere.

Sep77

Sep77 said on the 15th May, 2010

I had to work otherwise I would have gone. However, I must say that after the Brisbane rally two months ago, I am neither impressed nor am I grateful for the contributions of fringe socialist groups with their banners, their messages and yes, smelling like old cheese. A lot of conservative LGBT folk are kept away by this, yet they are just as much a part of the struggle as anyone who desires equality under the law, yet are made - intentionally or not - to feel greatly unwelcome. In order to make these rallies more successful, perhaps there should be some concessions, such as keeping notable political party favouritism out of them in order to make larger numbers of people who are politically diametrically opposed to feel more welcomed to attend.

coast_boy_21

coast_boy_21 said on the 15th May, 2010



Bullshit, you just don't have the guts to "come out" and support gay rights:p

weathervain

weathervain said on the 15th May, 2010

Yeah Poolboy quit bein a secret gay and swish it up!

nickdisco

nickdisco said on the 15th May, 2010

If memory serves, Melbourne usually has double the turn out than Sydney..
I went to the Melbourne rally once, my shoes were rad.. and then they wanted me to march..... pffft...

gale force

gale force said on the 15th May, 2010

it's coming! was great to march today

datkindagal

datkindagal said on the 15th May, 2010


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFjWRGaV-Fs

rudeboy86

rudeboy86 said on the 15th May, 2010



I have not gone to any of these bullshit rallies because I don't believe in fighting for the right to join what can be best described as a sinking ship or dilapidated and out-dated institution.

I am against the notion of privilege being awarded to those engaged in state sanctioned monogamy as opposed to other variants of relationships.

I am going to the IDAHO action in Melbourne on Monday which addresses the issue of violence against Queers, something I find to be much more important among other issues facing the Queer community.

Martha Stewart

Martha Stewart said on the 15th May, 2010

I was just looking through the photos..

What's with all the socialists there? and the CFMEU?

I agree with what has been said above, I think we're detracting from the main issue.

weathervain

weathervain said on the 15th May, 2010



you don't seem to wear enough glitter

KathLarkin

KathLarkin said on the 16th May, 2010

The demonstration was amazing! between 4 and 5, 00 people in melbourne hit the streets to take a stand againts homophobia! It was great to see so many of the unions lending their support, many of them have endorsed the campaign and advertised the rally to their members. The fact that unions, socialists, the greens, rainbow fmailies, high schools, university students, rainbow Labor and many many more groups had contingents there just shows what broad support this campaign has. The more allies we have the better!

gigabytegrrl

gigabytegrrl said on the 16th May, 2010

Yeah, it was fantastic to march (I was in Sydney), such passion and determination. Whenever a speaker said we need to keep coming back to rally in larger and larger numbers, the crowd went wild! I was also petitioning for the upcoming World Refugee Week protests, and I found the majority of people there could see there was a connection between the way the government oppresses and demonises refugees and what they do to LGBTI people. Those that didn't see the connection still loved the rally and got a sense of solidarity and support from being involved.
Most of the people I spoke to had found out about the rally by seeing a poster or finding out about it at one of the speakouts and stalls that have been held on campuses and at Taylor Square and Town Hall over the last few weeks. This really showed the importance of the work done to get people to the rallies, they don't build themselves! More people doing this work is needed if the movement is to grow and win.

coast_boy_21

coast_boy_21 said on the 16th May, 2010



Stop whining about gays whining LOL

danny corvini

danny corvini said on the 16th May, 2010

Sydney's the gay party capital, but Melbourne seems to be the gay conscience capital.....

rudeboy86

rudeboy86 said on the 16th May, 2010



As long as you weren't one of those people running around trying to sell people copies of the Socialist Alternative Magazine.... :)

gigabytegrrl

gigabytegrrl said on the 16th May, 2010

Yeah, I saw your disgusting comment on the photo of a long term activist for LGBTI rights who was selling badges to help Socialist Alternative to continue doing all the work we did to build the rally. Didn't see you there mate, nor did I see you doing anything to build it, all you have done is poke fun at the thousands of people who actually give a damn and are prepared to come out on the street to demand equality, not snipe from the sidelines like you. Pathetic rude boy, your pseudonym is very apt.

rudeboy86

rudeboy86 said on the 16th May, 2010



No the reason why I did not show up and never will show up is because the idea of marriage of all sorts offends me considering I am polyamorous among other things.

Which photo were you talking about by the way?

For the record, I have spent most of my life involved in Leftist groups. Was a part of a Socialist youth group that has history going back to 1897 in Eastern Europe. I was there for 10 years and spent one year as a member of the leadership group so I grew up in the movement for your information. Throughout highschool I was involved with the Socialist Alliance and for one year I was a Greens member. It was only in the last couple of years that I really grew sick of the bullshit pushed by S.Alt members who could not argue further than what they read in their own literature, it was about then that my sympathies to Anarcho-Syndicalism became much stronger. I did a lot of campaigning for Union Solidarity when the group was still active, I helped coordinate industrial actions and pickets and the most major one being the strike at the Boeing plant in Melbourne a couple of years ago where I spent 6 weeks doing overnight and day shifts on the picket line.

I have been active in going to demonstrations since I was 11-12 years old and I am still active and these vary from workers' rights, to anti-racism, anti-war, G20...etc In relation to Queer rights I am more likely to possibly help organise or rock up to an action based around issues that I find are more important to the Queer community than the desire to jump on the sinking ship that is the institution of marriage and try to assimilate. The issues that concern me as a Queer male are Queerphobic violence, Trans rights, rights of sex-workers (there are heaps of Queer sex-workers), actions outside mad Pentacostal Churches that preach hate (eg. Catch The Fire Ministries), the ongoing HIV/AIDS crisis, Pink Dollar capitalism (the way that capitalism exploits the Queer community), support for Queers of Colour..etc

My main reason for my attitude about the Socialist Alternative is due to their unforgiving hostility towards Anarcho collectives (I'm lovin the solidarity there comrade) whereas other groups on the Left seem to be more inclined to set our few differences aside and have some form of open line of communication.


Again I need to explain my name...it is a 1960's Ska/Reggae reference...look it up I'm not going to explain it AGAIN.

crazzymikey

crazzymikey said on the 16th May, 2010

looks like as usual the socialist nutters have taken over the protest and scared away the masses.

I reckon they care less about the cause and more about the fight itself. And their own agendas as a political group.

If they did care about the cause they wouldn't insist on saturating the protest with their banners and propaganda,

Travis de Jonk

Travis de Jonk said on the 16th May, 2010

Melbourne handed in a 100,000 signed petition too. I'll be sure to add that to article.

imanutter

imanutter said on the 17th May, 2010

So was it hijacked like previous gay marriage right rallies by CRAZY people with their own insane communist or Greeny agenda??

BenjaminSolah

BenjaminSolah said on the 17th May, 2010

Was at the Melbourne rally. It was awesome! Loved Ian McKellen and thought one of the best speeches was from the Fire-fighters Union, smashing that stereotype that unionists are only blue-collar macho men concerned only with work-related issues.

Really sad to see so many people having a go at people who dare to care about other issues too. Should we all just think we're the only one suffering from discrimination from the Rudd government? The issues of attacking refugees and workers are connected a lot more to gay rights than some people might think and people have the right to talk about other issues.

Glad to see socialists there that did a hell of a lot of work sticking up posters and handing out leaflets.

rudeboy86

rudeboy86 said on the 17th May, 2010

I used to do some work for the Fire-Fighter's Union a while ago...getting sponsorship placements to fund their magazine.

CeeJay

CeeJay said on the 17th May, 2010



I think that is exactly the problem these rallies are always going to have: the issue attracts the more radical of the straight activists, and the more conservative of the gay population, and - despite how well-meaning both groups are - never the twain shall meet.

Meanwhile, I skipped the rally to research wedding venues :p

Of course I'm lucky in that my partner is Portuguese, so once the hand-wring over the Pope's visit is over, we are just one signature away from being able to have a fully legal same-sex marriage.

Mann

Mann said on the 17th May, 2010

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march00.jpg

It was very liberating and it felt good to march along that day.


http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march01.jpg

Mann

Mann said on the 17th May, 2010

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march02.jpg

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march03.jpg

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march04.jpg

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march05.jpg

One wide pan was not enough to contain the huge wave of people that showed up and marched.

Mann

Mann said on the 17th May, 2010

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march06.jpg

The actual route we took from Town Hall to Hyde Park was lovely. We stopped traffic but not long enough to really annoy people. There was a lot of police presence to make way for us and look after us. Usually at these sort of rallies the police look to contain the marchers but they were amicable, happy and I think enjoyed strolling along because we were just such a fabulous, cute and chirpy bunch of homos.

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march07.jpg

Leading the march was a big, pink ‘Marriage Equality NOW!’ banner followed by a giant, rainbow flag.

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march08.jpg

After that were the same-sex marchers with their red flags waving about and this one girl who wore a complete wedding dress. Props to her for dressing up. Only a handful wore anything symbolic. Most of us were just ourselves.

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march09.jpg

Following us were the Jewish GLBT group and then various socialist groups that supported our cause.

Mann

Mann said on the 17th May, 2010

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march10.jpg

Bringing up the rear were students for same-sex and equality with marriage.

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march11.jpg

Our linear penetration into the city was so long! It looked like we stretched half the length of Hyde Park.

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march12.jpg

We wrapped around the park and congregated before St Mary’s Cathedral, with Centre Point/Sydney Tower as our backdrop.

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march14.jpg

The skies were blue, we were colourful as always and cheering in unison against mean things. The vibe was brilliant and you felt a strong sense of unity.

Mann

Mann said on the 17th May, 2010

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march15.jpg

A petition of one hundred thousand names was handed over to a greens representative.

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march16.jpg

MC, Geoff Field from 2dayfm watching gender activist Norrie May-Welby.

The highlight and reward for the excellent march was Norrie’s beautiful and solemn song.

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march17.jpg

Hir lyrics were paralleled by a physical redressing from a woman’s outfit to a man’s attire on stage. All the while, Norrie held the same, strong-willed stare and asked what it means to be a man or a woman.

I liked the bit where Norrie appeared to be completely stripping but really just had skin-coloured leggings and a strap on dildo. I’m pretty sure every gay guy’s eyes were immediately on that thing. Geoff Field looks very pleased with the presence of that penis.

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march18.jpg

Ending hir performance collected, bold and head held up high.

In one performance, the crowd was hushed from a cheery, chanting group to one that was rather touched and in quieter contemplation after a strong eruption of an applause.

Mann

Mann said on the 17th May, 2010

http://mymothandi.com/wp-files/100515_march19.jpg

Performances followed to entertain us as we sat in the shade of the setting sun. It was a great day.

What do we want? Marriage equality! When do we want it? Now!

gigabytegrrl

gigabytegrrl said on the 18th May, 2010

Hey Mann, your photos are fantastic! Can we use some of these to promote the next rally? I'm collecting good material to put together videos and photos professionally for promotional use on the web, print media etc.

Let me know! gigabytegrrl@hotmail.com
Cheers,
Heidi

rudeboy86

rudeboy86 said on the 19th May, 2010

Yeah I know it really is starting to give me the shits....it is done.

As for those pillocks who question my ability and experience and the dedication as an activist I am just going to have to give them the occasional serve every so often when it comes up in discussion.

pioneer_to_the_falls

pioneer_to_the_falls said on the 19th May, 2010



Like me! I was listening to the song (Pioneer to the Falls) as I was signing up to SameSame. I couldn't come up with anything else so I choose the song title. I thought I'd be able to change usernames once my account was activated...

pioneer_to_the_falls

pioneer_to_the_falls said on the 19th May, 2010

Yes Pi, you're still fairly vague in my mind after 6 months. I still think of you as Mr Skarsgard but I'm not sure.

But as for me, I'm not a good swimmer, I'm older than 'Oldie' and I'm almost as charmingly grumpy as 'Grumpy'.

Ah Skarsgard... might re-use that avatar. Though I'm not digging the new brunette look.

Where did "Poolboy" come from? I assume "Jackson" has something to do with your name irl?

pioneer_to_the_falls

pioneer_to_the_falls said on the 19th May, 2010

haha, nah. I just liked the South Park portrayal of Sarah 'horse face' Jessica Parker :)

Mann

Mann said on the 21st May, 2010

Hey Mann, your photos are fantastic! Can we use some of these to promote the next rally? I'm collecting good material to put together videos and photos professionally for promotional use on the web, print media etc.

Let me know! gigabytegrrl@hotmail.com
Cheers,
Heidi

Sent you an email saying: YAY. Don't know if it made it to you so I'll say it here too. If you want larger versions for print, just give me a poke.

All the best with your next rally. It was a great day and I really enjoyed marching along from Town Hall to Hyde Park. It was super well organised and if you guys ever needed volunteer help, you should post online. I'm sure waves of homos will definitely help you including *me.*

local_warming

local_warming said on the 22nd May, 2010

looks like as usual the socialist nutters have taken over the protest and scared away the masses.

I reckon they care less about the cause and more about the fight itself. And their own agendas as a political group.

If they did care about the cause they wouldn't insist on saturating the protest with their banners and propaganda,

yep.
they are parasites.
attatching themselves to causes (hijacking) to gain noteriety for other non- related causes, so they can say "well most of the people there who i spoke to also support the other issues"

local_warming

local_warming said on the 22nd May, 2010



Really sad to see so many people having a go at people who dare to care about other issues too.

.

then having other rallys for those specific issues, rather than hijacking rallys, so you can insert the crowd numbers there as automatic support for your other issues not related to gay marrige