Mardi Gras hits the big 4 – 0

Lisa Maree Williams | Getty Images | r

More than 300,000 people lined Sydney’s streets to watch the annual – and 40th –
Mardi Gras.

There were more than 200 floats and 1,200 participants in the march.

Steven Saphore | Reuters | r

The Huffington Post notes that

LGBTQ entertainers, celebrities, sports stars and media personalities appeared on various floats alongside regular participants, their friends and families, while Cher also marched before performing at a parade after-party. Some of the biggest cheers, however, were reserved for the “78ers”, those people who marched in the original 1978 demonstration and who have a special reserved place of honor in each parade.


Hay’s Pride

Riley Stuart/ABC | r

ABC went to the small Australian town of Hay, little more than a village, because they are having their first Gay Pride ever.

Remote and small it may be, but it is the same as everywhere else – there are gay and trans people.

For George, Snapchat provided a silver lining.

The selfie-driven smartphone app is the communication channel of choice for teenagers, in part because messages vanish shortly after they have been read.

It was on Snapchat this country boy rode his surging pangs of terror to give his best friends the news.

“I just said that I’m transgender and I explained to them I’d appreciate it if they used male pronouns and called me George and that they could speak to me about it at school if they wanted to,” he said.

Teddy, who is also a trans man, has been able to provide a different perspective.

“People are often incredibly surprised to hear that the lived experience for LGBTQI people in Australia isn’t as rosy as perhaps they had imagined,” he said.

“I think we get lulled into this idea that because we’ve got a gay uncle everything is fine now.”

Fascinating glimpse into small town life.

Hitched in Oz


Patrick Hamilton/AFP/Getty | 18008

Same-sex couples married in midnight ceremonies across Australia on Tuesday as gay marriage became routine.

Marriage equality became law on 9 December but all couples must give a month’s notice for weddings which made Tuesday the first possible date for gay marriages.

Athletes Craig Burns and Luke Sullivan, pictured, married at a midnight ceremony.

Girls get in first in Australia

TWO lesbian couples have become the first people to legally marry in this country after they were exempted from waiting a month to wed.

Lauren Price and Amy Laker of Sydney both wore fairytale white wedding dresses and carried colourful flowers as they married on a sunny Saturday in front of 65 friends and family, beneath a floral arch at Macarthur Park in Camden, south of Sydney.

Meanwhile in Melbourne, Amy and Elise McDonald became the first gay pair in Victoria to legally marry.

Gay Activist sends congratulations to all.

The things that really matter, indeed

Tim Wilson proposing | Sky News/House of Representatives | 17168

Tim Wilson, a gay Australian MP, fought back tears as he popped the question to Ryan Bolger just moments after a bill paving the way for same-sex marriage was introduced in Australia’s House of Representatives. It was the first time an MP had proposed on the floor of the House.

He said: “In my first speech I defined our bond by the ring that sits on both of our left hands – that they are the answer to the questions we cannot ask. So there is only one thing left to do: Ryan Patrick Bolger, will you marry me?”

Mr Bolger, who was sitting in the public gallery, quickly responded “yes” as the floor erupted in applause, and house speaker Rob Mitchell added: “That was a ‘yes’, a resounding ‘yes’. Congratulations, well done mate.”

Australian senators would like some wedding cake

Two weeks after Australians overwhelmingly endorsed same-sex marriage, the Australian Senate approved a bill to allow gay marriage by 43 votes to 12.

They also rejected amendments to legally protect people who refuse to provide professional services to same-sex couples on religious grounds, including lay ministers and civil celebrants, as well as vendors like caterers and florists.

The bill will go to the lower House of Representatives next week, where it is also expected to be approved.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull aims to have the bill approved before Christmas.