Welcome to Intolerance

Dear Sir and Madam Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, look

Last Saturday at 8.05 PM AEDST on the Foxtel Arena broadcast of your Mardi Gras parade, online the performer “Penny Tration” referenced the Indigenous welcome ceremony to your event. “An Aboriginal smoking ceremony?” she asked, “How do they fit an Aboriginal in a tally-ho paper?”

I suggest this moment of intolerance, of which you may not be aware, gainsays the event’s message of acceptance. Certainly, it is at odds what most reasonable people would regard as comedy.

Further, as I’m sure you’re apprised, the term “an Aboriginal”, particularly when it is not succeeded by a word like “person”, is entirely unacceptable to most Indigenous Australians. And, natch, anyone with good manners.

Mostly, though, this statement vilifies; in this case it vilifies our First Nation peoples. And, vilification law aside for a minute, this really, really gets up my ginger.

Seriously. How can someone sit atop Oxford Street, a trading route of Cadigal land, and spout this nonsense? How can any individual luxuriate in the glory of progression provided by your organisation and the ongoing efforts of Queers and just NOT GET that racism is horrid and filthy and wrong and works by a mechanism identical to the one we’re all supposed to be so cranky about every time we march for “Pride”?

And, FFS, how long will reeking caricatures of my gender continue to represent my sexuality? I mean. I love good drag, but these dames were dire.

As broadcasters referenced the presence of a delay facility throughout the night, I am surprised this moment of unmasked hatred and poor humour went to air. Perhaps you’d like to take this matter up with your broadcast partner.

And, of course, as I’m in the process of whining to ACMA and the Human Rights Commission having already complained to Foxtel (who apologise only that I didn’t find this moment funny) I’d love to know how it all turns out.

And, of course, I’d adore with equal fervour a reason to resume works with Queer organisations. But it is instants like this delivered by ham-fisted ninnies like that which make me suspect that I’d find better manners and more common ground at the Country Women’s Association. They would never think to piss on a Welcome to Country.



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