Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

Another opportunity to engage in the marriage equality conversation

Mark Fletcher
September 2nd, 2017 · 34 Comments

I am looking forward to reading the Quarterly Essay by Benjamin Law that is to be published in ten days. While I have not read the essay, I am aware of Benjamin Law’s work and respect his thoughtfulness and contribution on many topics of societal interest. His essay, Moral panic 101 Equality, Acceptance and the Safe Schools Scandal, is bound to be controversial, entertaining and provocative. These are all good attributes of any contribution to the timely conversation Australia is having right now.

We can decide how important the topic is in our own businesses with our decision as to where the title is placed. I suspect placement with newspapers would be ideal. It is more likely to be considered for purchase there than, for example, at the counter.

The alternative is to early return or hide the title. That would be sad for a few reasons: this is an Australian publication, it is certain to get media coverage and sales revenue should be a motivator, it contributes to a local conversation, supermarkets won’t have the title. You can use this title to differentiate your business in a small way.

Regardless of your position on the $122M survey later this month, this issue of Quarterly Essay is worth supporting. Remember, we are retailers not censors.

Footnote: this post is not about which way to vote or about the same sex marriage survey that may be conducted later this month, depending on the High Court, it is about placement of a title to maximise the opportunity for the business.


Category: magazines · Tactical display

34 responses so far ↓

  • 1 David // Sep 2, 2017 at 7:45 AM

    Frankly I do not support Gay marriage and I am sure there are more important matters to discuss than this. I will not display magazines that confront this issue as it is NOT an issue, rather an argument we do not need.

    Marriage is an institution between a man and a woman to give birth to the following generation in most cases.
    Why are we pandering to 1.5% of the population ?


  • 2 Andrew T // Sep 2, 2017 at 8:47 AM

    My God David, are you crazy? You will be crucified on this ‘Yes’ site. David@anglevalenews? whatever it’s called will be apoplectic.

    It’s OK to vote NO people.


  • 3 Ted // Sep 2, 2017 at 10:54 AM

    David…you could make the same argument when the USA sought to abolish slavery. Why were they pandering to a minority?


  • 4 Adelaide Dupont // Sep 2, 2017 at 12:00 PM

    Six months after the Mardi Gras … there is an opportunity!

    People might wonder where all the current LGBTQIA magazines have been.

    And supermarkets not having the QUARTERLY ESSAY?

    Probably put it with the philosophy and education magazines – or with the parenting magazines.


  • 5 Steve // Sep 2, 2017 at 12:07 PM

    David, your a newsagent not a censor, if we all start stripping magazines off the shelves because we dont agree with their political view aren’t we going to alienate a large % of our customers? Not a good business decision.

    Ted, I dont think the abolishion of slavery is a very good example seeing it was achieved through a horrific civil war. Abe Lincoln was in the minority with less than 40% of the popular vote, he did win the electoral college vote 100% of northern states 0% of southern states leading to the succession of the southern states, civil war and horrendous loss of life. The majority wasn’t pandering to the minority, the majority (confederates) went to war against the minority (unionist) and lost. Badly.


  • 6 Mark Fletcher // Sep 2, 2017 at 12:18 PM

    David, if marriage is, as you say an institution between a man and a woman to give birth to the following generation, then you case aside children boos out of wedlock, maybe children born through IVF.

    My understanding of the survey is it will ask solely abut two people who love each other and none of the other issues people try and bring in.

    As I note in the post, this essay by Benjamin Law is a contribution to a discussion that our channel is lucky to have as a differentiator. My advice is to embrace the opportunity regardless of personal held views.

    There are plenty of newsagents who hate smoking and the harm it does, yet who sell cigarettes.

    There are plenty of newsagents who hate the damage done by gambling, yet sell lottery tickets.


  • 7 Colin // Sep 2, 2017 at 9:59 PM

    Learn from Brexit & Trump. Cease all engagement with the NO camp. Quietly support the logical. Do not justify. Let the silent majority stay in their comfort zone voting yes.


  • 8 Big Oil // Sep 3, 2017 at 9:56 AM

    Benjamin Law is the quintessential poster boy for modern Australia queer community.

    Witty and urbane zhe is inersectionality bestowed with identifying as both gay and Asian.

    I love him because of z/his-z/hir intelligence.

    Other people find z/his-z/hir attractive because they are rice queens.


  • 9 Adelaide Dupont // Sep 3, 2017 at 12:21 PM

    Big Oil:

    I’ve been a Benjamin Law fan ever since about 15 years ago.

    Not quite when zhe hadn’t emerged from Brisbane school productions yet.

    Gaysian was that ground-breaking first book.

    No joy for me when it came to the Quarterly Essay in Mountain Gate.

    I asked two young men at the counter and they said they didn’t have it. Actually one referred to the other.

    And there is no Quarterly Essay in Dymocks at Knox City either.

    Of course I could have come upstairs to NewsXpress.

    Big Oil: what did you think about zhir latest column about literacy and numeracy in the GOOD WEEKEND?

    And some 8 years ago [2009] there was a Dirt Cheap Books outlet in Ferntree Gully Road.

    So I will ask again on or about the 12th.

    Early opportunity to influence the supply chains.

    And isn’t the eventual date about two weeks before the deadline of the plebiscite? voluntary survey?


  • 10 Mark Fletcher // Sep 3, 2017 at 4:19 PM

    ‘Adelaide’, as noted in the post, it is out out yet.


  • 11 David // Sep 6, 2017 at 1:46 PM

    Funny, I thought we lived in a democratic society and we all were allowed to have our own views and to state them if we so desire and not be ridiculed by arrogant and out of date comments.

    I will stand by my views and not display Gay magazines as it goes against my personal beliefs.


  • 12 MARK R // Sep 6, 2017 at 5:39 PM

    David you say we live in a Democratic Society so why then do you choose to impose your beliefs on your customers. You have no right to be the self appointed censor.

    Fine you can have your views but its a bit rich to post what you have, then you get annoyed buy less favourable feedback. Go and stand in front of a mirror for a while


  • 13 Big Oil // Sep 10, 2017 at 7:21 AM

    An extract of Law’s Essay

    4 year olds transitioning to another sex. It’s a minefield.


  • 14 Mark Fletcher // Sep 10, 2017 at 9:23 AM

    Context matters.


  • 15 Big Oil // Sep 10, 2017 at 10:48 AM

    Yes context does matter.

    Who thinks that this 4year old kid is from a recently arrived immigrant family from a working class suburb?

    Or who thinks the parents are Green leaning white inner city people virtue signalling?

    Examples of this kinda thinking everyday…
    Who out there doesn’t believe that there is a better suited married husband and wife in Canberra are desperate to adopt a child?

    Context matters.


  • 16 Steve // Sep 10, 2017 at 4:16 PM

    Big Oil, a bit of context. This is a case of foster parents adopting a child they have cared for 4 years not adopting a new born at birth. There is a desperate need for more foster parents and foster parents sometimes become the adoptive parents of their wards. I have a good friend who is single, in her 40’s and the foster mum to 6 kids aged 6 to 18, three of which she has adopted. My own brother and his wife are currently going through the process of adopting a 13 year old girl they have been fostering for 10 years. These are cases of children who are in happy homes being given the security that adoption gives them over the insecurity that foster care gives them.
    Just how happy do you think a child would be being taken out of the only home they know and handed over to a heterosexual Canberra couple purely because their heterosexual?
    You are right context is very important.


  • 17 Big Oil // Sep 10, 2017 at 7:46 PM

    Steve, argumentum ad logicam


  • 18 Steve // Sep 10, 2017 at 9:22 PM

    Sorry I can see the fallacy in pointing out that this is a case of adoption of a foster child. Any Heterosexual Canberrian couple has the same opportunity to foster children if they wish. If there is a “better suited married husband and wife”waiting at home for DCP to deliver a child for adoption too them when the only real option is to become a foster family first then they probably aren’t better suited. Selfish yes better suited no.


  • 19 Big Oil // Sep 10, 2017 at 9:59 PM

    “Sorry I can see the fallacy in pointing out that this is a case of adoption of a foster child.”

    Your brother and his wife should be able to explain it to you.


  • 20 Colin // Sep 10, 2017 at 10:37 PM

    Think it is bad news for PM to come out as a yes. It is disingenuous given the lead up. I fear he will only encourage people to vote against him and not on the issue.


  • 21 Mark Fletcher // Sep 10, 2017 at 10:57 PM

    Law’s essay has nothing to do with whether gay couples should be able to adopt, which, of course, they should be able to. It is a thorough look at the Safe Schools scandal.

    The sexuality of any couple has no bearing on whether they will be good parents. One only has to follow court cases in any state to realise this.


  • 22 Big Oil // Sep 11, 2017 at 5:59 AM

    This one weren’t to flash


  • 23 Andrew T // Sep 11, 2017 at 9:02 AM

    Don’t forget to vote NO


  • 24 Steve // Sep 11, 2017 at 9:14 AM

    Big Oil, if I wanted to find cases of paedophilia in heterosexual families I sadly wouldn’t have to look back 4 years and to the other side of the world.


  • 25 Jon // Sep 11, 2017 at 10:56 AM

    Andrew T I’m confident you are in the minority


  • 26 Andrew T // Sep 11, 2017 at 12:08 PM

    30,0000 (apparently) turned out to wave flags and abuse the NO voters on the weekend. 150,000 turned out to watch AFL.
    I think you’re not only in the minority but too blind to respect other positions.


  • 27 Big Oil // Sep 11, 2017 at 2:03 PM

    Hi Steve, post the links to hetrosexual couples that recently adopted a kid and sexually abused them here in Australia.

    chirp. chirp.


  • 28 Steve // Sep 11, 2017 at 3:19 PM

    Big Oil, I didn’t specify adopted children in heterosexual families just children in heterosexual families period. The abuse of children is usually too common an occurrence to warrant reporting unless there is some salacious aspect to it like the instance you found in post 22. Also the protection of childrens privacy usually stops any identifying information being published, however the Australian Government does publish statistics and heres the 2017 report.


  • 29 Mark Fletcher // Sep 11, 2017 at 5:36 PM

    This is not a discussion about whether gay or straight adoptive parents above kids. There is no evidence whatsoever of gender determining if someone will abuse. It is a baseless argument of some on the fringe out of fear and ignorance. Shame on them.


  • 30 Big Oil // Sep 11, 2017 at 7:22 PM

    It’s not a baseless argument. Lesbian and Gay men are more likely to commit domestic violence.
    The National Violence Against Women survey found that 21.5 percent of men and 35.4 percent of women living with a same-sex partner experienced intimate-partner physical violence in their lifetimes, compared with 7.1 percent and 20.4 percent for men and women, respectively, with a history of only opposite-sex cohabitation.


  • 31 Ross // Sep 11, 2017 at 7:25 PM

    I would have thought there has been enough discussion/time wasted on this topic. It’s a subject that will never be resolved.


  • 32 Andrew T // Sep 12, 2017 at 7:45 AM

    Oh yes Benjamin Law. What an inspiration to the gay and lesbian community.
    When he comments about ” hate fucking the homophobia out of anti-gay MP’s” I’m sure you all applauded and excused his little naughty tweet. He is a darling of the left after all.
    If that’s the best the alphabet people can cling to as an icon then I’m very happy to vote NO and toss his rag into the bin.


  • 33 Jim // Sep 12, 2017 at 8:17 PM

    Judging by the comments on this blog newsagents must all be healthy. Otherwise they wouldnt have the time to dross as such.


  • 34 Big Oil // Sep 12, 2017 at 8:22 PM

    Newsagents are also Australian’s, members of the community and voters.

    They are entitled to an opinion on social issues.

    This is a hot button issue in the community. People are talking about it.

    Love is Love. Vote Yes.


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