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Wednesday 08 October 2008

Proclamations of the Red Queen

25th September 2008

Queensland: Lesbians Win Homophobic Vilification Case

Posted by: Craig Young

Queensland took a long-overdue step into the twenty first century yesterday when right-wing gun lobbyist and homophobe Ron Owen was found guilty of inciting hatred against lesbians and gay men in his native town, Gympie.

Owen was fined $A12,500, to be paid to three of the four lesbian and bisexual complainants, and he would also be forced to issue a statement acknowledging his intention to cause hurt to the Gympie LGBT community. He’s said he’ll appeal, but he exarcerbated his initial gaffe when he published a report before the Coolala Shire Council, making comments on television and a website, and hosting a bumper sticker stating Gay Rights? The Only Right Gays Have is the Right to Die.

Owen is not a well-liked man in Gympie, despite being a former local councillor in the community, and the Queensland Anti-Discrimination Tribunal ruled that while Owen was entitled to be a homophobe, and express his views, there were limits. Apparently, vilification of lesbians and gay men through sporting bumper stickers that advocate hatred and violence is one of them. He didn’t own the car in question, but had use of it, and the sticker went too far. Even better for the lesbian complainants, they’ve attracted considerable public sympathy from the citizens of this rural community, who obviously know a right-wing dropkick when they see one. 

Evidently, Queensland isn’t the complete soft touch for right-wing extremists that it was in the days of Joh Bjelke Petersen and Pauline Hanson. What a commendable result for rationality and common sense.


Glenis Green: “Lesbians Shame Lobbyist” Courier Mail: 24.09.08:

Michael McKenna: “Antigay OK, But Sticker Went Too Far: Australian: 24.09.08:

Tags: Politics · Religion

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Craig // Oct 6, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Meanwhile, across the ditch, there’s much angsting about the outcome. The Queensland Council for Civil Liberties opposed the decision on free speech grounds, while Owen whinged about ‘thought police’ and ‘political correctness,’
    as did Courier Mail columnist Des Houghton.


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