Most memorable anti-gay nuggets of 2011
It should come as no surprise that the worlds of politics and religion produced some of the most outrageous, ridiculous and downright homophobic utterances of 2011. Here, we list the year's five most memorable anti-gay nuggets.
“Deserves to be laughed at”
Bob Katter’s (pictured) comments in August that same-sex marriage “deserves to be laughed at and ridiculed” was unfortunate, yes, but it did yield one positive thing – it introduced Australia to his half-brother, Carl. A week after the Member for Kennedy’s remarks, Carl Katter went on national TV to “come out” about his homosexuality and speak out against his brother. Carl has since become one of the country’s most vocal advocates for equality. If it weren’t for Bob’s clichéd nuggets, we wouldn’t have the support of someone as passionate as Carl.
“Unhealthy, unnatural unions”
Australian tennis legend turned pastor Margaret Court served up a storm of controversy last month when she spoke out against homosexuality and gay marriage. In a newspaper interview, Court said “there is no reason to put forward alternative, unhealthy, unnatural unions as some form of substitute” to family units comprised of heterosexual parents, and to back gay marriage would be to approve “abominable sexual practices”. A rollcall of tennis greats including Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King and Rennae Stubbs have since come out against Court, who were all united in their disapproval and disappointment of her remarks.
“Wasn’t gay marriage and Islamic”
Jim Wallace, Managing Director of Australian Christian Lobby, drew the ire of not just the gay and Muslim communities, but also war veterans when he tweeted on ANZAC Day: “Just hope that as we remember Servicemen and women today we remember the Australia they fought for - wasn't gay marriage and Islamic!" He swiftly apologised for the remarks but not before drawing thousands of outraged tweets in response.
“Mardi Gras anarchy”
In February, Peter Madden, then a NSW Christian Democrat Party candidate, released a video entitled Heal Our Land, where he made some of outrageous and sensational comments about the GLBT community. “Mardi Gras is a parade of live porn,” Madden said, adding that “hundreds and thousands of drunken youth will come to Sydney streets and be incited to all kinds of lust, filth and moral depravity” and “Hyde Park will be strewn with the bodies of drunken teenagers – 13, 14 and 15-year-old children, celebrating, watching and participating in forms of sex they can’t understand”. This type of nonsense continues for a whole 7 minutes. Needless to say, he lost the election.
“Global gay Gestapo”
In July, Kevin Rudd’s sister Loree made headlines when she said that the same-sex marriage movement was being pushed by a “global gay Gestapo” and pledged she would quit Labor if the party endorsed marriage equality. Outraged equal rights advocates and Holocaust survivors lined up to demand from Loree two words – “I’m sorry” – which, sadly, never came. True to her word, however, Loree quit Labor in early December following the party’s move to back gay marriage. Our two words to Loree: good riddance.