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Going postal

By Rebecca Vassarotti 17 August 2017 26

Well, it looks like it’s going to happen and we are going to have ‘postal survey’ on the issue of marriage equality. Despite the concerns about the impact on many members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) community, the non-binding nature of the vote, the cost and the myriad of technical and constitutional problems with this proposal, the Federal Government is pushing ahead to ‘let all Australians have their say’ on the issue of marriage equality.

This means that we now all get to have a say on whether or not we think we should continue to exclude a group in our community from one of the core social institutions that continues to provide meaning to our private lives, as well as affording and strengthening legal status and rights for all couples and families.

As we prepare for the postal survey, many of us are bracing for a campaign that we know will be damaging, and working through how we best support our friends, neighbours and families through a process where there will be many arguments made that are designed to hurt, offend and devalue who some people are and who they love.

This feels particularly galling in the ACT given we are a community that tried to settle the issue in the way it was meant to (through political debate and legislation) only to be thwarted by legal challenges and an inability for our community to settle the issue through the standard democratic process.

Given the issues, it is understanding that some have suggested boycotting the vote. Despite all the problems, however, there are some opportunities that this situation gives us. Most importantly, this is our chance to stand as a community and demonstrate our strong support for equality, love and kindness to the rest of the country. It’s our opportunity to stand in solidarity with all members of our community and say that we choose love over hate, that we choose inclusion and acceptance over discrimination, and we value families – in all their diversity.

We can only send this message if we do mobilise and support the yes campaign. We all need to make sure we are enrolled to vote, and actually vote. This is a vote that is voluntary and it’s vital that apathy and despair at the political process doesn’t scuttle this important reform.

The ACT has a history of being much more progressive than the rest of the country when it comes to referendums and plebiscites (since we have been able to vote in them – only since 1977). We were the only jurisdiction to have a majority vote in favour of the Republic in 1999, was the only place to support the enshrining of ‘one vote one value’ that was put to referendum in 1988. We even went our own way in relation to the 1977 plebiscite regarding our national song, supported Waltzing Matilda over Advance Australia Fair.

Even though I don’t agree we should be having this postal survey on marriage equality, I still think it’s important to participate in and hope that citizens in the ACT vote. What do you think?

If you or someone, within the LGBTIQ communities or allies, friends, and family, needs additional support there is help available through the AIDS Action Council counselling service – available to all the community – on 6257 2855 or through Qlife which is operational between 3pm until midnight, 7 days a week – qlife.org.au

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Going postal
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dungfungus 10:21 pm 25 Aug 17

stubby morrison said :

chewy14 said :

stubby morrison said :

dungfungus said :

stubby morrison said :

GrumpyMark said :

Traces_of_Nut said :

Worryingly Andrew Barr, in your enthusiasm you have forgotten an essential fact: It is our money – not yours.

I hope Barr or one of his cronies reads RiotACT because he needs to understand that ordinary citizens of the ACT will only put up with so much.
I have no beef against same sex marriage. If the definition of marriage is changed, it will not affect me or the lovely lady I have been married to for over 37 years.
I was all prepared to vote “Yes” in the plebiscite and would have done so in the postal survey. But I am seriously considering voting “No” as a protest against the misuse of public money by Barr and the Greens.
Imagine Mr Barr, if the ACT returned a No result how much ammunition that would give to the hard right wingers in the federal parliament?
If you p#ss off enough ACT citizens through your arrogant disregard for what the average person sees as a reasonable use of public monies, you may end up getting the exact opposite result to that you are promoting.

It’s strange that a lot of the people taking issue with the ACT government funding the Yes campaign don’t seem to take issue with the Federal Government forcing this completely unnecessary $122 million postal survey in the first place.

Probably because the same people may be seen as hypocrites due to their support of the same ACT Labor/Green government vainly challenging the Federal government on the same issue a few years ago which cost us $800,000.
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/samesex-marriage-costs-the-act-more-than-800000-20141103-11g4yz.html

I don’t get your point – the people pushing for the $122 million postal survey are against same sex marriage. The only reason we’re having this survey is because Malcolm Turnbull can’t deal with the factional divisions in his government. The cheaper and more logical way to deal with this issue is to simply have a free vote in parliament.

Fiscal conservatives seem to be very selective about when they get outraged about the waste of taxpayer money.

By “deal” with the issue, you actually mean supporting legislation that you personally support, correct?

The cheapest option would be to do nothing, there have already been many free votes in parliament and they have been rejected over many years.

The only reason we are having this survey is because the Liberal party went to the last election with a stated policy position of holding a plebiscite on the issue.

Seems the ones being selective are those who constantly whinge about politicians breaking their promises but only when they disagree with them.

The government promising to waste money doesn’t make it any less of a waste. By “deal with this issue” I mean they should actually do their jobs. The whole point of parliament is that representatives vote on pieces of legislation on behalf of their constituents. That’s literally why we elect politicians. What is the point of politicians if they can’t represent the views of their constituents?

It is unreasonable to complain about the ACT government spending $45,000 (according to today’s Canberra Times) to support same sex marriage, while ignoring the fact that this government is spending $122,000,000 on this survey.

Is it unreasonable then to demand that the ACT government also allocate $45,000 to support the status quo lobby?

stubby morrison 4:32 pm 24 Aug 17

chewy14 said :

stubby morrison said :

dungfungus said :

stubby morrison said :

GrumpyMark said :

Traces_of_Nut said :

Worryingly Andrew Barr, in your enthusiasm you have forgotten an essential fact: It is our money – not yours.

I hope Barr or one of his cronies reads RiotACT because he needs to understand that ordinary citizens of the ACT will only put up with so much.
I have no beef against same sex marriage. If the definition of marriage is changed, it will not affect me or the lovely lady I have been married to for over 37 years.
I was all prepared to vote “Yes” in the plebiscite and would have done so in the postal survey. But I am seriously considering voting “No” as a protest against the misuse of public money by Barr and the Greens.
Imagine Mr Barr, if the ACT returned a No result how much ammunition that would give to the hard right wingers in the federal parliament?
If you p#ss off enough ACT citizens through your arrogant disregard for what the average person sees as a reasonable use of public monies, you may end up getting the exact opposite result to that you are promoting.

It’s strange that a lot of the people taking issue with the ACT government funding the Yes campaign don’t seem to take issue with the Federal Government forcing this completely unnecessary $122 million postal survey in the first place.

Probably because the same people may be seen as hypocrites due to their support of the same ACT Labor/Green government vainly challenging the Federal government on the same issue a few years ago which cost us $800,000.
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/samesex-marriage-costs-the-act-more-than-800000-20141103-11g4yz.html

I don’t get your point – the people pushing for the $122 million postal survey are against same sex marriage. The only reason we’re having this survey is because Malcolm Turnbull can’t deal with the factional divisions in his government. The cheaper and more logical way to deal with this issue is to simply have a free vote in parliament.

Fiscal conservatives seem to be very selective about when they get outraged about the waste of taxpayer money.

By “deal” with the issue, you actually mean supporting legislation that you personally support, correct?

The cheapest option would be to do nothing, there have already been many free votes in parliament and they have been rejected over many years.

The only reason we are having this survey is because the Liberal party went to the last election with a stated policy position of holding a plebiscite on the issue.

Seems the ones being selective are those who constantly whinge about politicians breaking their promises but only when they disagree with them.

The government promising to waste money doesn’t make it any less of a waste. By “deal with this issue” I mean they should actually do their jobs. The whole point of parliament is that representatives vote on pieces of legislation on behalf of their constituents. That’s literally why we elect politicians. What is the point of politicians if they can’t represent the views of their constituents?

It is unreasonable to complain about the ACT government spending $45,000 (according to today’s Canberra Times) to support same sex marriage, while ignoring the fact that this government is spending $122,000,000 on this survey.

chewy14 11:18 am 24 Aug 17

stubby morrison said :

dungfungus said :

stubby morrison said :

GrumpyMark said :

Traces_of_Nut said :

Worryingly Andrew Barr, in your enthusiasm you have forgotten an essential fact: It is our money – not yours.

I hope Barr or one of his cronies reads RiotACT because he needs to understand that ordinary citizens of the ACT will only put up with so much.
I have no beef against same sex marriage. If the definition of marriage is changed, it will not affect me or the lovely lady I have been married to for over 37 years.
I was all prepared to vote “Yes” in the plebiscite and would have done so in the postal survey. But I am seriously considering voting “No” as a protest against the misuse of public money by Barr and the Greens.
Imagine Mr Barr, if the ACT returned a No result how much ammunition that would give to the hard right wingers in the federal parliament?
If you p#ss off enough ACT citizens through your arrogant disregard for what the average person sees as a reasonable use of public monies, you may end up getting the exact opposite result to that you are promoting.

It’s strange that a lot of the people taking issue with the ACT government funding the Yes campaign don’t seem to take issue with the Federal Government forcing this completely unnecessary $122 million postal survey in the first place.

Probably because the same people may be seen as hypocrites due to their support of the same ACT Labor/Green government vainly challenging the Federal government on the same issue a few years ago which cost us $800,000.
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/samesex-marriage-costs-the-act-more-than-800000-20141103-11g4yz.html

I don’t get your point – the people pushing for the $122 million postal survey are against same sex marriage. The only reason we’re having this survey is because Malcolm Turnbull can’t deal with the factional divisions in his government. The cheaper and more logical way to deal with this issue is to simply have a free vote in parliament.

Fiscal conservatives seem to be very selective about when they get outraged about the waste of taxpayer money.

By “deal” with the issue, you actually mean supporting legislation that you personally support, correct?

The cheapest option would be to do nothing, there have already been many free votes in parliament and they have been rejected over many years.

The only reason we are having this survey is because the Liberal party went to the last election with a stated policy position of holding a plebiscite on the issue.

Seems the ones being selective are those who constantly whinge about politicians breaking their promises but only when they disagree with them.

dungfungus 10:12 am 24 Aug 17

stubby morrison said :

dungfungus said :

stubby morrison said :

GrumpyMark said :

Traces_of_Nut said :

Worryingly Andrew Barr, in your enthusiasm you have forgotten an essential fact: It is our money – not yours.

I hope Barr or one of his cronies reads RiotACT because he needs to understand that ordinary citizens of the ACT will only put up with so much.
I have no beef against same sex marriage. If the definition of marriage is changed, it will not affect me or the lovely lady I have been married to for over 37 years.
I was all prepared to vote “Yes” in the plebiscite and would have done so in the postal survey. But I am seriously considering voting “No” as a protest against the misuse of public money by Barr and the Greens.
Imagine Mr Barr, if the ACT returned a No result how much ammunition that would give to the hard right wingers in the federal parliament?
If you p#ss off enough ACT citizens through your arrogant disregard for what the average person sees as a reasonable use of public monies, you may end up getting the exact opposite result to that you are promoting.

It’s strange that a lot of the people taking issue with the ACT government funding the Yes campaign don’t seem to take issue with the Federal Government forcing this completely unnecessary $122 million postal survey in the first place.

Probably because the same people may be seen as hypocrites due to their support of the same ACT Labor/Green government vainly challenging the Federal government on the same issue a few years ago which cost us $800,000.
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/samesex-marriage-costs-the-act-more-than-800000-20141103-11g4yz.html

I don’t get your point – the people pushing for the $122 million postal survey are against same sex marriage. The only reason we’re having this survey is because Malcolm Turnbull can’t deal with the factional divisions in his government. The cheaper and more logical way to deal with this issue is to simply have a free vote in parliament.

Fiscal conservatives seem to be very selective about when they get outraged about the waste of taxpayer money.

“the people pushing for the $122 million postal survey are against same sex marriage.”

Well, some of the people might be against SSM but overall the decision to have the voluntary, non-binding survey was a Parliamentary compromise.

The last thing the people who want SSM wanted was a compulsory plebiscite vote because that may not have delivered an outcome they wanted so this is why they are going gang-busters to make sure it is Pyrrhic “yes” outcome.

Blen_Carmichael 5:38 pm 23 Aug 17

Rebecca Vassarotti said :

I would just like to provide some reflections on the issue of costs, which a number of contributors have commented on. We need to remember it is the Federal government who has decided to spend $122m of taxpayers money on a non-binding, voluntary survey using the postal service on an issue where there is quite a bit of information regarding community sentiment.

The information on the Territory Government financial support on the YES campaign is that it will be modest and mostly involve in-kind support such as displaying rainbow flags and advertising on public buses. I understand that there will be an allocation of funds to boost mental health support services for members of the LGBTIQ community who may suffer distress from some of the engagement – I am not sure that could even be called support for the YES campaign but rather is supporting vulnerable members of our community.

Translation: “It’s okay for government to spend taxpayer funds on the #SSM vote provided it’s for the ‘yes’ campaign.”

stubby morrison 5:12 pm 23 Aug 17

dungfungus said :

stubby morrison said :

GrumpyMark said :

Traces_of_Nut said :

Worryingly Andrew Barr, in your enthusiasm you have forgotten an essential fact: It is our money – not yours.

I hope Barr or one of his cronies reads RiotACT because he needs to understand that ordinary citizens of the ACT will only put up with so much.
I have no beef against same sex marriage. If the definition of marriage is changed, it will not affect me or the lovely lady I have been married to for over 37 years.
I was all prepared to vote “Yes” in the plebiscite and would have done so in the postal survey. But I am seriously considering voting “No” as a protest against the misuse of public money by Barr and the Greens.
Imagine Mr Barr, if the ACT returned a No result how much ammunition that would give to the hard right wingers in the federal parliament?
If you p#ss off enough ACT citizens through your arrogant disregard for what the average person sees as a reasonable use of public monies, you may end up getting the exact opposite result to that you are promoting.

It’s strange that a lot of the people taking issue with the ACT government funding the Yes campaign don’t seem to take issue with the Federal Government forcing this completely unnecessary $122 million postal survey in the first place.

Probably because the same people may be seen as hypocrites due to their support of the same ACT Labor/Green government vainly challenging the Federal government on the same issue a few years ago which cost us $800,000.
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/samesex-marriage-costs-the-act-more-than-800000-20141103-11g4yz.html

I don’t get your point – the people pushing for the $122 million postal survey are against same sex marriage. The only reason we’re having this survey is because Malcolm Turnbull can’t deal with the factional divisions in his government. The cheaper and more logical way to deal with this issue is to simply have a free vote in parliament.

Fiscal conservatives seem to be very selective about when they get outraged about the waste of taxpayer money.

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