elfinblaze: (supergirl)
- When I was in high school, Brian Greig was the only openly gay politician I knew of. Today he's writing in The Guardian, reflecting on those times, and how little has changed:
History teaches us that wishing gay rights issues would just go away always backfires, and suppressing this issue will only serve to make it a key focus in the election.

- I love this article: Superman and the Damage Done.
Grace is a word that I have used a number of times here, and I have meant that in multiple ways, both as a description of physical movement and as a way of behaving. Superman can be firm, but is always polite, and he does not hold his powers as a cudgel above others... unless it's Zack Snyder's Superman.

Now I'm thinking of the DC trinity in spiritual terms. If Superman is grace, Batman is sacrifice, and Wonder Woman is mercy. At least, that's how I think of them.

I'm pretending the current cinematic "Znyder-verse" doesn't exist, LA LA LA!

Randomness

Mar. 22nd, 2016 10:49 pm
elfinblaze: (zamonia dangerous books)
- This is hilarious:
As question time began, Fairfax journalists walked out on strike in protest against 120 job cuts. The former Labor treasurer Wayne Swan was named and banned from the chamber for 24 hours. His colleague Stephen Conroy played Candy Crush while heckling the defence minister, Marise Payne.

A summary of the last sitting of parliament before the Easter break. And it's all true! (Well, I don't have a second source for the Candy Crush claim, but all the other activities described in the article are true.) They just forgot the mention the pyjama party at the end of the day. Yes, there are photos of politicians in pyjamas in the halls of parliament! I should also point out that Bruce Billson's valedictory speech went for an hour. An hour!

I can't help but think of The Muppets' song Cabin Fever. Imagining politicians as Muppets makes everything less headdesky.

- This is a good read too:
No healthy debate or productive engagement is ever going to be possible when attack on a person is considered equal to criticism of a property. That's flat-out ludicrous.

It a good job of explaining how people can sometimes over-identify with fiction in a way that becomes very personal. Too personal. I get that, but not the need to attack others who disagree. I'm a big fan of love what you love, live and let live.

Randomness

Jun. 1st, 2015 12:22 pm
elfinblaze: (Arrow Laurel)
- This is so cool: Altas of the DC Comics Universe.

- Of all the comic book TV shows I do watch, I wasn't going to catch Lucifer because it sounded boring. Then I saw the trailer. It looks fun. And ridiculous. Thus fun. The fact that it's pissing off conservative Christians is an even better reason for me to check it out. Maybe at a fitting time like Christmas. [/bitter lapsed Catholic]

- I have not, however, seen Constantine, mainly because FUCKING GOYER!!

- From Bill Shorten's speech:
The Labor leader also argues that legalising same sex marriage sends a message of inclusion to younger Australians. “We are proud of you, for who you are. You belong.”
Everyone needs to hear that, not just young people. Thank you, Bill Shorten.
(The pictures I re-posted to my tumblr will tell you exactly what the government thinks of this bill.)

- But I completely agree with this too:
Parliament passed the Same‑Sex Relationships (Equal Treatment in Commonwealth Laws—General Law Reform) Act 2008... that gave same-sex couples the same legal status as straight de facto couples... It could just as easily have been 'An Act to get those rowdy gays off our backs without us actually having to legislate for marriage equality...'. Of course it was still a huge achievement, but as is typical for Australia on these matters it was the kind of victory that left a lot of people tapping their watches and going 'yeah, well, about time, isn't it' rather than leaping into the air in celebration.

That's the thing about all these announcements of support and progress from politicians. They never leave me wanting to shout for joy. I only ever want to roll my eyes and go, "yeah, I'll believe it when I see it", or "well, that was half a step forward." No jubilation. Just a vague sort of despair tinging everything.

Randomness

Mar. 14th, 2014 10:16 am
elfinblaze: (quiltbag)
- March in March, this weekend.

- Boosting my faith in humanity: Australian Government MP slams colleague over opposition to gay parents
I've been a single parent, I know what it's like to do the washing at 3am in the morning to make sure the uniforms are ironed. I think it's the quality of the role model, male or female, not the sexuality of the parents that matters.
The fact that this conservative party member was applauded after speaking up, by members of the same conservative party, gives me hope.

- I haven't said this enough, but every time I see or hear a straight person speak up for my rights I want to thank them, for taking up the fight even though they don't have to, for not leaving it to queer people to carry that burden all by themselves. Because fighting all the time, every day is exhausting. So it's nice when someone fights the battle for you every once in a while. It makes me feel... important. Important enough to be defended, at least. So thank you, Allies.

- This is specific to America, but it applies in other Western countries too: We need to hold hand more, not less.
Now that it’s obvious it’s not necessarily safe to hold hands even in Greenwich Village, NYC, where gay people have been out of the closet for longer than probably anywhere else on earth, maybe it’s time we showed solidarity by holding hands MORE in protest.
I'm sceptical of Spirit Day and Wear It Purple Day, because I think wearing purple for a day is just too obscure to have any impact. Many people wear purple every day. Some people who don't know about those days will happen to wear purple on the same day. It's just not evocative, or rather, provocative enough. I'd rather have a Hold-Hands-With-A-Member-Of-The-Same-Sex Day, which is less catchy, but far more dramatic and more likely to have a lasting impact. Because that would get attention.

- In news that should be no news to anyone: Catholic Hospitals endanger women's health.
The range of women’s health care options that Catholic facilities offer is limited — sometimes, like when a pregnancy goes wrong, to a deadly degree. And while most doctors have an ethical obligation to inform patients of all their options, Catholic facilities routinely refuse to offer even abortions necessary to save a pregnant woman’s life; their doctors are also barred from telling a patient with a nonviable pregnancy that there are other, often safer options available elsewhere, lest the patient seek care at another facility. (LGBT patients may also run into problems, whether it is with hormone therapy for transgender patients or simply the right of married same-sex partners to be treated as next of kin in making health care decisions).
elfinblaze: (quiltbag)
If you've been keeping up with the debates about the Sochi games, you might have heard the current Olympics being compared to the Olympics in Berlin, Germany, in 1936, when the Nazi party had already instituted laws hostile to a minority of people. At the time the Olympic Committee decided that they had too much money on the line to consider a minority of people a significant factor in moving or cancelling the games. If you've been reading the news, I'm sure you've seen people bring up the comparison now, and I'm sure you've seen people argue that it's a comparison that's inappropriate and over the top and Nazi analogies are never appropriate, etc.

I'm not Jewish, but I am German and I am queer, and from this perspective I can see both sides of the argument. I go back and forth on whether it's an appropriate analogy to make. The discussion in my head goes something like this:

- Yes, it's an appropriate analogy to make because the state has sanctioned the targeted imprisonment of minority populations in both cases.

- No, it's not an appropriate analogy to make because Russia doesn't have concentration camps that exterminate huge numbers of people (as far as we know).

- But in 1936 there were no exterminations yet either, those only started after Crystal Night in 1938, institutionalised when WWII began in 1939 and the camps got too crowded. And Russia does have hard labour prisons akin to the "work camps" of Nazi Germany before WWII. Just look at what the members of Pussy Riot endured. So the imprisonment aspect is still applicable.

- But you're not Jewish, so it's not your horror to claim.

- No, but gay people were killed by the Nazis too (among many other groups), and they are important too.

- But Nazi analogies just make you look hysterical.

- Is it hysterical if it's scarily similar? Isn't it better to remember where these mind sets can lead us?

So currently I'm leaning towards appropriate analogy.

On a related note: Meet the 7 openly LGBTI athletes going to Sochi.

Politics

Jun. 29th, 2013 01:58 pm
elfinblaze: (quiltbag)
A friend asked for my thoughts on current Australian politics, so here they are:

snipped for length )

In short, everything is multi-sided and feelings are complicated.
elfinblaze: (Glee Klaine)
Oh wow.

First this deleted scene hits the internet, and now this:

NSW upper house backs gay marriage.
The [New South Wales] upper house has passed a motion calling on the federal government to allow gay marriage... Greens MP Cate Faehrmann's private members' motion passed 22 votes to 16 in the Legislative Council, with both major parties allowing a conscience vote. NSW has now joined Tasmania and the ACT in having a parliamentary chamber call for the 1961 commonwealth Marriage Act to be amended to allow same-sex marriage.

It's only symbolic, with no legal impact, but sometimes the symbolic means everything.

And this is exactly what I needed this week. ^_^
elfinblaze: (Imagine Me & You)
From Violet Blue: Did You Know? Abby Winters Broke Up With Australia.

Seems to me that Australia just lost a substantial amount of revenue (not to mention the flagship site for what is seen as sex-positive pro-female porn). I just can’t see how getting rid of a company like Abby Winters is going to solve any of the issues Australia’s anti-porn pundits are trying to address. Except for the whole problem of free expression and healthy, consensual adult sexuality, of course. Problem solved! :(

What the hell, Australia? That's one of only two porn production companies I like (the other being Viv Thomas). Abby Winters is what porn should be: real women doing what they feel comfortable with, no pressure, nothing fake.

Forget the 1950s, we're marching straight into the Victorian era here.

Have some examples (both links contain happy nudity, no sex) from Abby Winters to illustrate this entry. Apparently this is considered illegal here.

Ok, I knew that profiting from any porn was technically illegal here, but no one ever actually gets prosecuted; the authorities tend to turn a blind eye, sort of like with abortion which is also technically illegal, but with more loopholes than Swiss Cheese. Which is why it's really sad when someone does (once in a blue moon) end up in court, and this time we've lost a very profitable company to our archaic laws.

Good luck, Abby Winters. Hope you do even better in Amsterdam.

Politics

Aug. 22nd, 2010 10:29 am
elfinblaze: (Harry Potter Firefly)
Regarding the Australian election: I have no idea what's going on, and I think a lot of people feel the same. For all I know, the next step could be Tony and Julia wrestling on the floor of the lower house, and whoever loses has to lick the blood off the carpet.

If Tony Abbott wins... *sigh* Three possibilities: 1) Move to New Zealand. 2) Secede. Make your bedroom its own nation. 3) Avoid thinking about it, watch porn, dye your hair purple, and eat copious amounts of chocolate.

Actually dying my hair purple and eating chocolate is always on my list of possible options, and in a progression from Plan A to Plan B, and onwards, it's usually around Plan W. Plan X can be summed up by the words: EXTERMINATE THEM ALL! Plan Y involves building a rocket and flying to Jupiter, and Plan Z is jumping into the Void. These are the kind of things I plot out while I'm on the bus home from work.

To distract you all from the above clusterfuck:

- “At seventeen I was engaged to a man I had never met.”. This is a beautiful story. One woman's true story of an arranged marriage into a culture she had little experience with. (Also, Part 2, and Part 3.)

- This is one of the most amazing pictures I've ever seen (contains artistic nudity). It's by Andreas Smetana.

And finally, note to self: Do not lean on your screws. It hurts.
elfinblaze: (Default)
- My sister is home! Back from 5 weeks in America. Yay! She says it wasn't all a good experience, but it was certainly an experience she's glad she had. She especially liked the shopping. XD

- She bought me the first season of Legend of the Seeker. Unfortunately the second season, which I want more, is not out yet, so I'll have to catch up on that at a later time, eventually, hopefully... if it ever comes out in Australia. Well, at least I have the first one. ^^

- Ye gods, I hoped attitudes and statements like that (2004) Family First comment that lesbians should be burnt at the stake were going the way of the dinosaur. Apprently I was being optimistic. Now it's One Nation picking up the pitchforks.

If you're eligible to vote next week, please make sure people like this don't end up in power. In the 2004 election ALP and Democrat voters helped elect Steven Fielding (Family First) to the Senate through preferences. If you'd like to do your research, check out https://www.belowtheline.org.au/ (For example, did you know that currently in NSW, Labor preferences Fred Nile's party above the Democrats, the Carers Alliance, and the Sex Party?)

Just because I'm not eligible to vote, doesn't mean I can't educate myself and share my thoughts with others.

- And lastly, the fun news: last week (Wednesday), X-Japan were featured on SBS News (this link goes to the original ABC broadcast of the story). An English interview with Yoshiki was featured, and some news about a possible English language album coming up (if Yoshiki ever finishes it). The report also mentioned a recent performance in the States and the petition from Australian/New Zealand/South Pacific fans to get the band to tour here too.

I've signed it; when I was in high school it was one of my biggest wishes to see X-Japan live. We missed out when they broke up last time. Now the band and the fans all get a second chance. If you like Classic Rock, look them up on YouTube. Tears is my favourite ballad by them, and that video comes with lyrics in Japanese and English (the song features both languages).
elfinblaze: (torchwood)
This is the picture that everyone is loving today: The new Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, with the leader of the Opposition, Tony Abbott.

cut for size )

And I'd like to join in the chorus: now that we red-heads are in charge of the country, the first thing I'm going to do is ban is the word "ranga", because comparing someone to an ape (orangutan) because of something they can't help, like their hair colour, is neither complimentary nor funny.

Yeah, I realise that sounds cranky, but I really, really hate that word.

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