People Are Boycotting Supanova Over Founder’s Stance Against Safe Schools

People Are Boycotting Supanova Over Founder’s Stance Against Safe Schools
Image: Supanova

Over the weekend Daniel Zachariou, founder and Event Director of Supanova, Australia’s largest pop culture expo, posted a petition on his Facebook page calling for transgender education in Australian schools to be stopped. The petition claims the ‘Safe Schools’ program forces children to “learn about sex, gender fluidity and transgenderism at ages as young as 5 without the supervision of parents”. It has been publicly criticised as “fear-mongering”.

Reaction to this post among con-goers has been swift and negative, with many calling for for a boycott of Supanova.

The Safe Schools initiative is a network of organisations that work with schools in Australia. Their goal: “create safer and more inclusive environments for same sex attracted, intersex and gender diverse students, staff and families”.

The initiative has been the source of controversy recently, after Liberal MPs Cory Bernardi and George Christensen called for a full parliamentary inquiry into the program, resulting in Bill Shorten calling Bernardi a homophobe in a terse exchange in front of Australia’s political press core. The inquiry caused some aspects of the Safe Schools program to be changed. Some found these changes transphobic, homophobic and short-sighted, others believed those changes didn’t go far enough.

The problem: this isn’t the first time Supanova has incited controversy in regards to cultural issues like this. Last year Supanova and Zachariou came under fire for inviting Adam Baldwin to the event at a time when Baldwin was considered a high profile supporter (and instigator) of GamerGate. Supanova’s decision caused The Ledger Awards to remove the convention as a sponsor. Many popular cosplayers withdrew their support of Supanova as a result; some were genuinely fearful for their safety.

For many, Daniel Zachariou’s post confirms Supanova is not a safe space for the LGBTQI+ community and suggests a level of transphobia.

Liam Esler, who runs GX Australia, Australia’s first queer gaming convention, was extremely disappointed by Zachariou’s post.

“As a diversity advocate and someone who loves pop culture and gaming events, the fact that Supanova and those who run it have now repeatedly shown disregard for the LGBTQI+ community, women and other minorities is hugely disappointing,” he said. “As much as I want to support events for gamers throughout Australia, there’s no way I’m going to do that when those running it post transphobic asshattery.

“The safer schools program has been effectively shown to help not only LGBTQI+ students but also LGBTQI+ faculty and staff. This is a vital program for a highly vulnerable group.”

Cosplayer Eve Beauregard publicly boycotted Supanova as a result of Adam Baldwin’s attendance last year. For her, this statement affirms her earlier decision to avoid attending the show.

“Supanova has been a big part of my life since I was a kid. It’s heartbreaking that the information that has come to light about the company over the last two years means I can no longer in good conscience support the show,” she said. “Our diverse and welcoming community deserves better. The exhibitors, guests and staff who work hard to make Supanova a safe place deserve better.”

Jordan Raskopoulos, the lead singer of Australian comedy act Axis of Awesome, is also a trans woman. Jordan too was deeply disappointed the Zachariou’s comments.

“I hope that this can be an opportunity for Zachariou to confront his own ignorance,” she told Kotaku. “I have worked alongside Safe Schools and Minus18 in Victoria and have seen, first hand, the positive impact their work has on young queer people. It took me until I was 32 to come to terms with being transgender. I was confused and alone with my feelings when I was young and a program like Safe Schools would have made an incredible difference to me.

“The gaming and pop culture community is incredibly diverse and it’s heartening to see the continuing efforts of events like PAX and GX to be inclusive. These events have gone beyond merely accepting diversity and are now at a point where they celebrate it. It has been a joy to be a guest at those conventions. It is profoundly disappointing to see how far behind Supanova is in this regard. I hope that they can learn from this and become a better convention in the future.”

Daniel Zachariou posted the following public apology on the Supanova Facebook page.

I want to express my sincere apologies to all staff, volunteers, guests and attendees of the Expo, and especially those who identify as LBGTQIA+. Recently I shared a link on my personal facebook page. In doing so I hoped to express some concerns about the nuances of the Safe Schools initiative. In no way did I intend to express transphobic or homophobic views, which would not align with the values of acceptance and camaraderie that I hold and aim to demonstrate through Supanova. Moreover, such views would not reflect the perspectives and diversity of the phenomenal team of staff and volunteers that make up Supanova as a whole.

Nonetheless, I realise the severity of sharing such a link and the impact it has as a representative of Supanova. My post and the discussions that followed have made many valued members of the community feel unwelcome, offended or uncomfortable. I take full responsibility for this and am committed to working with my team to continue doing what we do best and what you’ve enjoyed wholeheartedly these last 15 years; wonderfully inclusive events whose size and scope are a reflection of every portion of the community coming together as one. As a part of this, I am introducing a new Diversity panel to the line up for our June tour. This panel will be hosted by Supanova staff and volunteers, including members of the LBGTQIA+ community. I invite you to come along, share your views and provide suggestions on how we can continue to grow as an inclusive, diverse event.

Everything we’ve done down through these years has been about broadening the team so as to best represent all of you, working tirelessly in doing so, and as the Event Director and Founder of Supanova I do ask that the whole team not be punished for my comments. Both I and the team of Supanova are committed to ensuring it remains a welcoming, enjoyable and inclusive environment for all just as it’s always been.

The reaction to the apology has been mixed, with many still planning to boycott the show.

Elissa Harris, co-founder of Flat Earth Games, is a trans woman. She believes the apology doesn’t go far enough. To her, this is about the broader issue of education and awareness.

“It’s hard to overstate the importance of efforts like the Safe Schools program for the mental well-being of all children,” she says. “The damage that can be done by even a handful of young people who, due to lack of education on the subject, might hurt fellow students who are dealing with their identity in an already-complicated environment is big enough to be a very real problem.

“The personal ‘opinions’ of people who have positions of power over public events is hugely important and they need to realise this. It is not as simple as a conflict of beliefs — education on this matter can foster human compassion and understanding at an age when it’s most important.

“Lack of education doesn’t “just” result in bullying, either, it often ends in violence, as evidenced by the incredibly high rate of assaults on trans-people. This is something that needs to change, and education is and always has been the best way to bring about any positive change in a society.”

Zachariou expanded on his opinion on Safe Schools, in this Facebook comment, claiming he was not completely against Safe Schools. His issue was with teaching younger children about gender issues.

But many believe this only exacerbates the situation. According to Liam Esler of GX Australia, reaching children at young age is often paramount in preserving the mental health of teenagers and adults later in life.

“Talking about queer and trans people or issues shouldn’t be something we only do with teens or adults,” he explains, “especially for trans kids, talking about it during childhood is super important in avoiding mental health issues later down the line.”

Daniel Zachariou told Kotaku he believed he’d been taken out of context.

“My share, which I didn’t realise linked to an image and supporting text, wasn’t in keeping with the spirit of my post or personal ideals, was never meant to look the way it did nor emphasise any gender,” he says. “It was the opposite in seeking not to limit the imposition of gender theory on young children without parental permission.

“Nothing I say will be enough just as my apology is being criticised as simply being bad PR. But as I have indeed sincerely apologised I’m not sure what else I’m supposed to do.”

The Diversity panel, which Daniel announced today as part of his apology, is part of a direct response to common criticisms of Supanova.

“Up until now we’ve been so inclusive as to not need to flag something as Diverse because so much of what we’ve done simply has been. Like our Stay Supa campaign which was always there, but because of the perception that others were doing more we had to get more vocal about our existing policies, rebrand it, and almost present it as if it were new.”

Daniel believes that, with Supanova, his track record in providing safe spaces for LGBTQI+ speaks for itself.

“We have an amazing expo run by an amazing team and we’ve always sought to provide a space that’s inclusive and fun, which we’ve successfully achieved.”

Comments

      • Because when it comes to people’s identities, gaming isn’t fun and games. The dog-whistle, bigotry driven attacks on the Safe Schools program (especially since they come from Cory Bernadi) are awful, and seek to marginalise young lgbt people in our society. You cannot plead ignorance on an issue when you are attacking different peoples way of life.

      • Yeah, they’re only being told that they’re abhorrent and children shouldn’t be exposed to their existence.

        No biggie.

          • Except it’s not reality that much of a stretch. People like Cory Bernardi have been making comments in poor taste and fanning the fires of antagonism from more repugnant groups like the ACL that do say these type of things.

          • Yes but this is Daniel Zachariou not Cory Bernardi and he’s clarified his position.

          • ‘I’m a screaming moron’ isn’t that much better than ‘I’m a bigot’ and let’s face it, only conservative apologists like you actually believe the guy isn’t just backpedalling because he got caught out.

          • Hyperbolic bigotry… Was waiting wasn’t disappointed.

            Get to the lynching Burny there be thought crimes afoot! YEEEHAW!

          • It’s adorable that you discovered the word ‘hyperbole’ today. I am very proud of the efforts you make to expand your vocabulary, you go girl!

          • Clarified after those comments, and Old Mate above should have known that, so his “everyone’s just over-reacting, since I don’t care” grand-standing deserves hyperbolic dismissal.

          • Well you usually do clarify after a bunch of hyperbolic perpetual offendatrons equate “I don’t agree with some things” to somehow mean “I hate gay/trans people and would like to see them wiped from the face of the earth because I want to squash their rights”.

            Then again you may be right, since it’s pretty obvious that any discussion that doesn’t fall into line with the victimhood industry will be devoured in a shit storm of exaggerated vitriol and bullshit. So you might as well clarify before but you’d get the same guaranteed result.

          • If only everyone was as edgy as MPM who NEVER gets offended by anything!

            (other than his constant offence at all those people who DARE be offended by anything not catering to SWMs).

            He’s at least a l48 Edgelord with deep specialisation in the ‘Oblivious cognitive dissonance tree’.

            Man had to grind hard to get there, show respect.

          • I have to love Supanova as it always brings out the dribbling mess of over exaggerated dribble and latest regressive buzzwords with no meaning from Burnside as he toils away at the victimhood olympics.

            Especially as he projects his cognitive dissonance and bigotry on those he throws his hatred and vitriol at while claiming to be compassionate and tolerant….

            This years Burnside rant was brought to you by “conservatives”.

      • Maybe because victimisation of and bigotry against LGBQT people is a constant ongoing problem which, despite our best efforts, is showing no signs of going away?

        Asking why people who are constantly being harassed and oppressed “get offended so easily” is like asking someone why they’re so paranoid when people ARE actually trying to kill them.

        Douche.

          • Where is the hyperbole? There are neighourhoods I can’t be seen holding my girlfriend’s hand without being worried for our safety as we both know people who have been bashed there simply for being seen as gay.

          • I feel the exact same way when I hold my daughters hand or give her a cuddle in public. The judgmental looks and stares, the comments people make under their breath. I have a beard and long hair, also male (just to clarify) which makes me the obvious pedo. I’ve had someone call security on me when taking my daughter into Target to choose some new socks and singlets because it was “inappropriate” and “suspicious”.

            Its a human thing, there is no saving or redemption here. We’re doomed as a species. The more time I spend with people, the more I rather spend time with those I choose for fear of going postal.

            I am not ashamed to hold my girl’s hand in public, and you shouldn’t be either it just sickens me every time to see what people have become.

          • In all seriousness, are you trolling or do you really believe what you say?

            I mean, I like a good bit of trolling as much as the next guy, but if you actually think the LGBTQI community has nothing to cry about then that’s interesting.

    • The problem with this is its bad to have a different opinion. TL;DR is it the L, the G, the B, the T, the I or the + that have a problem?

        • Even if it is, its still his opinion and the extreme left dunces just want to silence any one that has a different social or political opinion to them.

          • What’s wrong with questioning someones opinion? If I felt that Daniels opinion was hateful, I wouldn’t want to attend or support this event. No on is silencing him, they are strongly disagreeing with him.

          • There’s a difference between questioning someone about their opinion and throwing out terms to silence them. Daniel’s opinion was one of questioning of the Safe Schools program itself, he wanted to see it modified so that children with a more rational mindset that could understand the ideals the program represents be taught to. Daniel was met with the usual shut down terms of transphobic/homophobic. Because we can’t have a discussion about these things, as you’re either standing in line with the LBGT community or you’re a transphobe/homophobe. There’s no middle ground or discussion allowed anymore.

          • He posted a link to a petition to have it scrapped.
            There was plenty of discussion leading up to the introduction of the program, but hey, it’s a lot easier to can something than actually be apart of it.

          • Hey, these goal posts… You seem to have moved them. Nice one, that takes a lot of effort.

          • Yep. It’s not ‘silencing’, as he can keep talking all he wants. But it seems like he can’t handle the heat and has apologized. If some bigots boycotted my hypothetical event because of my beliefs, I’d tell them I’m better off without their intolerant asses. But he wants all that LGBT+ money I guess.

          • But it seems like he can’t handle the heat and has apologized.

            Of course. Placate the masses, make money. But ask yourself, does he really mean it? Does an apology mean anything any more? Everyone gets all outragey and asks for him to change his ways! He offers an apology and everyone goes to Supanova (which everyone was going to anyhow). Fact is, realistically at the end of the day, he’s not *really* going to change his opinion, he’s just going to placate people to shut them up and bring in the dosh including their own.

          • I don’t care how the world improves, so long as it does. He can quietly hate the scary gays all he wants as long as he stops trying to marginalise them.

          • He can quietly hate the scary gays all he wants as long as he stops trying to marginalise them.

            But that’s entirely the point isn’t it? Out of sight out of mind? Has anything been achieved with this? An empty apology makes the world all better? Yay he’s been taught a lesson! Victory! (Really, he hasn’t and nothing has been achieved asides the *appearance* of victory.)

            This is the kind of thing I was talking about in another thread and it loans itself to the overall view that essentially, like a few others have said, the apologies aren’t about them actually being sorry these days but more a way of saying in a coded way ‘Would you shut the fuck up and get over it please?’ because that’s all it comes down to. He’s *still* going to oppose Safeschools, which like any proposed idea, is not perfect, like any idea can be refined and like any idea thats jumped on like a bandwagon, has only actually been read and explored by around 5% of it’s fanbase but proclaimed to have been doneso by the other 95%. But on the *other* hand, like most ideas of worth, have opponents that are screaming that it’s the worst thing in the world when it’s anything but…

          • @weresmurf

            But that’s entirely the point isn’t it? Out of sight out of mind?

            Ending apartheid didn’t end racial prejudice, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t have been ended. Like @pokedad said, any progress is good progress. There’s a big difference between quietly being a bigot and actively trying to get LGBT-friendly programs scrapped.

          • Part of the problem is that in his apologises he talks about nuances, etc … then why sign a petition trying to an end to the whole thing rather then trying to address those nuances he has an issue with it some other way..?

          • Just as he is allowed to have an opinion and say it out loud, others are allowed to disagree with that opinion and tell him as much.

        • Why does that even matter? In a free society people are allowed to be bigoted, and you just have to suck it up and take it like a man or move to a country where you aren’t allowed to have differing opinions. A persons right to offend is equal to your right to be offended.

          • People can be bigoted all they like, I also have the right to disagree with those people.

          • What ridiculous circular “logic”. Sure, people have the right to be bigoted, just as people have the right to disagree with those bigots and boycott their events, and just as you have every right to disagree with the people who disagree with the bigots.

          • Congratulations, my good man/woman/unspecified other, you have grasped the basics of free will and multiple opinions. Have a cookie.

          • But aren’t we also a civilised society, i guess some people just hoped we were passed bigotry?

          • Nobody is going to sew his mouth shut. He is being criticised openly for speaking openly. That’s fair turnabout.

            The criticism in this case is important because he is a powerful person in an industry that is at a crossroads with how it treats people who are traditionally minorities. He’s trying to push things down the path that has real world negative effects on people’s lives. That’s why it matters.

        • when the justification of that opinion is “i just dont like trans / gay / black / muslim / whatever subset of people”

          edit: and the holder of that opinion is unwilling to change their views based on evidence.

    • Probably because when we were animals many thousands of years ago, encountering difference was a flip of a coin between death and prosperity. It still is today in some ways.

      • Yep. There’s actually a lot of evolutionary reasons for things like racism; way back when what we didn’t understand typically used to kill us and tribe clashes were frequent. Conflict and warfare are ubiquitous features of old hunter-gatherer societies. It’s not easy to shed tens of thousands of years of hyper-vigilant caution.

        As an example. it’s hypothesised that the neanderthals were forced into extinction from violence with homo sapiens.

        • It’s not an excuse for modern actions though. It’s just something tired and old that is easy to fall back into.

          • Well simply that while we should acknowledge our ingrained biological instincts we shouldn’t use their existence as an excuse for shitty behaviour. I know you weren’t saying it was though. I was clarifying it for myself.

        • It’s also hypothesised that climate change wiped them out, or that they were absorbed into the cro-magnon population through interbreeding.

          Even if early humans did wipe them out, there was significant interbreeding between Neanderthals and early humans prior to their extinction, so I don’t think that comparison really holds water.

  • So is it still ethically acceptable for me to attend supanova? I just dont know anymore.

    • I can’t tell if you’re joking or not. If it’s an ethical choice, you make that yourself. Others can’t tell you whether it is ethically acceptable or not, because that differs by person.

      • Joking or not, it seems that the Australian convention scene is becoming yet another “us vs them” landscape. When the Adam Baldwin thing came up, people were getting angry to the point of violence with anyone who planned to do to the convention, especially if they planned on seeing Mr Baldwin. That year, those going to Supanova were seen in online spaces as “GamerGate people” and were “advocating harassment of women”. This year could see a repeat of that same mindset. Going to Supanova now could be seen by some groups/people as supporting transphobic/homophobic ideals.

        • Commercialization has also encouraged an ongoing cycle of ‘being persecuted’ and then ‘attacking the persecutors’. Look at people like Anita, Zoe, Randi, Allison and all the other Patreon beneficiaries. They have a commercial interest in being victims. Leaving aside whether or not they incite harassment intentionally by baiting people they hope will react (which Alison Rapp is now clumsily doing), the simple fact is that if harassment went away, so would the livelihoods of these people.

      • I think what that person is trying to say is that the overreaction surrounding this episode is so big, that one can entirely expect people start saying that anyone attending the event after this is a bigot that spouses the organisers’ point of view.

    • Ha ha, do what you feel man! Go where the wind takes you. Sign (or not) whatever petitions you like. Don’t let the rabid partisans of any movement silence you or convince you that you shouldn’t express yourself. It’s funny how the persecuted turn into the persecutors. It happened throughout history and throughout the world… Jews, Zimbabwean blacks, Chinese, Black Lives Matter… the list goes on. Sure the original persecutors ‘only have themselves to blame’ but two wrongs don’t make a right and all that…

  • I don’t know what to make of this

    Can someone just clarify, is he posting this as the official position of Supanova? Because if he’s just posting this on his personal FB I don’t see a problem.

    This guy is not Supanova, plenty of hard working people and the fans are Supanova.

    • I don’t know how Facebook works, but in that image it looks like it’s posted under his name rather than a Supanova account. In which case, yeah.

      Also I feel like there was a thing about some details of the Safe Schools program being not so great, and some issue with the people/organisation behind it. Can’t actually remember any of the details of that though, or whether it was actual cause for concern.

      • The Safe School objections have largely been ideological, not evidence based.

        • The main issue I believe people are concern about is the age group it’s targeting.

          • Eh, even that’s debatable. Kids these days are exposed to a lot, young, and I’d rather them have access to decent information (or at least have teachers who knew where they could access the right information to give to them).

            Of course, part of the point is that the whole safe schools thing was meant to be a pick-and-choose for educators, not “teach everything to the youngest class right now.” That’s kinda what’s lost in the shock headlines.

          • The reason why people want this taught young is that by the time parents think your child is ready for talks about being transgender or being in any way a deviation from the norm, it might be too late and a lot of damage could already have taken its toll on the kid.

            Much in the same way that sex education training starts before puberty, a heads up about your possible identity should come before your identity really comes into question. Whilst I think 5 is too young for out right saying “You might not actually be a boy, just fyi”, I think it’s a fine age to have the idea of other people being LGBT+ mentioned. Much in the same way that young children and exposed to the concept of differing skin colour and cultures early to avoid problems at school.

            Regardless, I’m sure we can all agree that education about the topic is needed in one form or another, so the conversation is good.

          • You make good points, however what a lot of people seem to forget is that sexual education is OPTIONAL, where the Safe Schools program is MANDATORY. This is the cause of a lot of issues when it comes to the when and how the program should be implemented.

          • Now to me I’d say both need to be mandatory and rolled into one as far as programs are concerned. The point of the program isn’t to turn children into sexual predators or nymphomanics, it’s a crucial part of development, I mean hell, even Wellness (aka, PE, Gym, etc etc) was mandatory at my school and that was just learning how to run good.

          • Rolling them into one program would be a good idea. However, there are still people out there that do not allow their children into Sexual Education classes for personal or religious reasons. Last time I checked, we aren’t a country that forces people to do things that they do not agree with.

            The point of the program isn’t to turn children into sexual predators or nymphomanics
            Ummm…. Please explain? I never said anything of the sort. So where did this idea come from?

          • Won’t let me reply directory your comment because of depth, but I wasn’t implying you thought that at all, on the contrary we seem to have very similar views on the subject. However I do know a few people that object to sex education on the grounds that they don’t want their kid to learn about masturbating. Which I find very optimistic at best.

          • Fair enough. It did just come very out of left field to me. And yeah, we do share a lot of the same thoughts on this subject

      • Also I feel like there was a thing about some details of the Safe Schools program being not so great, and some issue with the people/organisation behind it. Can’t actually remember any of the details of that though, or whether it was actual cause for concern.

        Studens and schools themselves have had nothing but priase for the program.

        so of course, tho who aren’t actual educators who are somehow in charge have overruled them and made changes, including requiring parental permission to speak with counselors or teachers about LBGTQIA+ issues….completely overlooking the problem that often they can’t talk talk to their parents about it. Imagine asking your father for permission go and talk to a teacher about how you might be gay and the best way to come out to him.

        so rather than keep a safety net around to help and educate kids (And for the record, they weren’t going into detail of same sex/trans acts or anything like that. Simple stuff like “Some boys like boy, nothing’s wrong with that.”

        Nope. Too risky.

        • Of course people are praising it… They don’t want a bunch of assholes labelling them bigots and harassing them until the end of time simply because they disagreed with an opinion.

          Being mandatory is absolutely ridiculous; It’s got nothing to do with bigotry, people just need to stop trying to force their own ideals down everyone else’s throats. It’s that simple.

          I mean fuck, if they implemented some sort of widespread mandatory religion program people would feel justified burning schools down to their foundations in outrage. But the moment you oppose something like this the ‘Bigot!’ cries come out of the woodworks.

          Also, the younger your target audience for this sort of stuff gets the more dangerous it becomes for people teaching this to manipulate (intentionally or otherwise) children into thinking they’re something they’re not.

          It reminds me of people who come out with shit like “Oh our 3 yeard old was born a boy, but identifies as a girl.” Fuck off they do, that’s purely adults pushing something onto a kid for whatever fucked up reason they could rationalise. It’s something young children cannot possibly grasp the ramifications of, but just goes along with because “The adult says it’s right!”

          • Somehow, based on your lengthy and one-sided response to this, I would have to say that you are misguided and don’t really understand the way that sexuality, identity, and, to some extent, even the human body works.

            There are many different ‘things’ that children can be, and are, bullied for and about; this is one of them.

            The ‘Safe Schools Program’ is NOT designed to persuade or “push” anything onto the students, regardless of age. This Program is, in fact, about educating young people about the different people they may come into contact with in their lives, as well as ensuring that they actually understand that this is ok. That everyone is not made the same way, and that’s ok. In fact, the Program simply aims to provide students with a new aspect to the curriculum to ensure that these students are not left behind in our ever evolving world.

            Curriculum is updated regularly to keep up to date with the society and societies around which it is based. The ‘Safe Schools Program’ is no exception.

            In reality, had programs like this been in place previously, perhaps there would be fewer people who are ignorant, uneducated, or simply afraid of the ‘unknown’. In fact, had this type of Program been introduced sooner, perhaps this issue may not have ever existed, and comments like yours (and many others), spouting on about ‘the horrors and damage done to children’, could have been avoided entirely.

            It’s amazing what a little education and knowledge can lead to, and what power it can give to previously marginalised and victimised people and children (of all ages).

            However, this issue will only end when people like you; people who do not understand the actual issue (or its consequences) being discussed, and who does not, cannot, and will not consider viewing anything from outside your own, sheltered perspective; stop viewing anything and anyone who is not the same as you as “different” and therefore, something to fear.

            Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and rightly so, however tearing someone down and (in many cases) dismissing their actual humanity and identity, is not overly evolved, productive, or educated. I just hope that future generations are not so close minded, and that the “US verses THEM” mentality can begin to at least fade.

          • I mean fuck, if they implemented some sort of widespread mandatory religion program people would feel justified burning schools down to their foundations in outrage. But the moment you oppose something like this the ‘Bigot!’ cries come out of the woodworks.

            There is a vast difference between teaching Religion (“God said this, we should all do that”) And Teaching (about) religion. (“Christians believe this, Muslims believe that”)

            This is teaching about LBGT+. They aren’t being told “You are X” They’re being told “Some people are X” which is reassuring for those who are gay/lesbian/whatever. It helps them feel that they aren’t freaks. They aren’t strange misfits who are the odd ones out.
            It could be something as innocent as a story involving a kid with two mothers and explaining why that is.

            It reminds me of people who come out with shit like “Oh our 3 yeard old was born a boy, but identifies as a girl.” Fuck off they do, that’s purely adults pushing something onto a kid for whatever fucked up reason they could rationalise.

            Or they simply could be? I won’t deny that there are people out there who would make those claims to try and seem progressive. But then you’ve got things like Tomboys. I’m not saying they all are, but it’s entirely possible a small percentage could actually want to be boys. Likewise, the boy who likes playing with dolls and wearing pink could choose to identify themself as a girl. I’m not saying they all do, but it does literally no harm for them to experiment with this if need be and learn who they are.

            It’s something young children cannot possibly grasp the ramifications of, but just goes along with because “The adult says it’s right!”

            Which is the exact same reason many people today have issues. “I’m gay, but having sex with other boys is wrong. Mum and Dad said it’s only right to be in a relationship with girls. That’s what the adults say is right.”

            Straight, gay, bi, trans, whatever. They are NOT being taught how to become them. They are just being taught that there are people like that out there. What motivates them, explaining how they are. Removing fear and giving acceptance and understanding.

            It’s not kids being taught to be gay homo fags.

          • Meanwhile, you say that like kids are being taught “Straight is the only way!” and such across the nation. See how that works? I can exaggerate your points into absurdity too.

            Mandatory things like this for young children treads a really questionable line between being helpful and being harmful. It’s one thing to say “It’s fine to be whatever you want, it’s fine for others to be whatever they want.” that’s neutral, it’s pretty much harmless in the context being discussed. It’s another thing to put anything further into young kids heads, they’re too easily manipulated.

            I also think telling young kids things like, “Straight is the only way!” or “You were born a girl so you’ve got to stay a girl!” is absolutely just as harmful.

            Yet people will ignore THAT to suit themselves. Because these days people are too busy seeing what they want in order to be offended 24/7… So that part of the arguments gets conveniently forgotten because it puts a damper on pushing their own agenda and ideals onto others.

            I’m sure there are those who do teach that being gay/bi/trans/etc is a bad thing, so deal with that. Don’t just come along and forcefully try to ‘educate’ everyone and then call someone a bigot all because they disagree with the method and you’ve got blinders on to any potential issues with it.

            To think that this sort of thing is precisely what some people want to push MORE of… Can’t wait to see what else they want to ‘educate’ people’s children on next.

          • Meanwhile, you say that like kids are being taught “Straight is the only way!” and such across the nation. See how that works? I can exaggerate your points into absurdity too.

            …but they are, though. Have you not ever been to a Catholic school? Or for that matter, almost every other religious school out there, not to mention the churches themselves that even public schooled kids go to.

            And even those that explicitly aren’t taught that, if all you see and hear is girls with boys and boys with girls, you start to think something’s wrong if you’re a girl and like girls.

            Mandatory things like this for young children treads a really questionable line between being helpful and being harmful. It’s one thing to say “It’s fine to be whatever you want, it’s fine for others to be whatever they want.” that’s neutral, it’s pretty much harmless in the context being discussed.

            Good, because this is what the program was. That’s as far as the education in classes went, unless children actively sought teachers/counselors out for advice on their own problems, which knowing kids, would almost always be away from the rest of the class, and even then, as a teacher myself, they would DEFINITELY get the kid to come back when other children aren’t around.

            It’s another thing to put anything further into young kids heads, they’re too easily manipulated.
            This is what the scare-mongers believed. Again, it was never designed to tell kids they were gay or they were actually a boy deep inside, not a girl.

          • The problem is you’re putting the ideas there simply by bringing them up. I have no issue discussing it with older children, teenagers, etc, who can make some sense of it and potentially draw their own conclusions but I think starting very young is absolutely questionable… It becomes much more akin to brainwashing than teaching, and I take the same stance with people who force religion on children.

            Especially since it is virtually impossible to teach something without inherent bias coming through, which is where my real issue comes in when dealing with teaching young children about issues like this.

            Personal bias from those teaching can very easily influence young children to think what the adult believes or thinks is best is actually the case. Even if it IS best, it’s not necessarily how a parent might want their child to be taught. Such as wanting them to learn to decide for themselves as much as possible, even if that results in the child growing up to be a bigot or such. It’s the chance you have to take.

            I’d love if you could also remove that bias from parents teaching their children, but it’s never going to happen. So while I’d like people to not influence their kids to be bigots, etc, I still think people have no business meddling with how other people’s children are raised… And it is exactly where this starts to cross such lines when you start forcing mandatory discussions about this on very young children especially.

            Long as the kid isn’t being abused physically/mentally then people outside the family really should stay out of it. And you can argue until you’re blue in the face that a parent teaching their child that certain aspects of society are wrong is abuse, but it’s simply not… It’s just poor parenting, and even then that’s only according to some people. Not all.

      • It’s an odd position to be in. Should I boycott heaps of awesome comic book stores because 1 person posted something I don’t agree with on his Facebook? I don’t think so. But at the same time, where does that association begin/end? If SupaNova was being run by Pol Pot I wouldn’t go.

        So I guess it’s a matter of threshold.

        • I figure everyone everywhere does or thinks something or other I don’t like. If I stopped doing things based on that, then I’d stop doing anything 😛

    • Doesn’t work that way anymore. You aren’t allowed to hold opinions differing from the social media current average or else you’ll face trial by social media.

    • His apology was written on the Supanova Facebook page, so doesn’t it make it about Supanova also now? Plus isn’t he the Sole Trader/Event Director of Supanova, which makes it far harder to separate the two?

      • Let’s be fair; as soon as people started calling to boycott Supernova due to this person’s position, it became about Supernova.

    • I understand the point you’re trying to make but you could also say that Trump is not America yet there’s a very real risk he could be in a position of power where his views can cause real harm. He might not “be” Supanova but his position within the event raises eyebrows at the very least.

      That said this dude needs to “L2corporate”. Never ever put your own views out in the open if you even remotely represent a larger organization.

    • Unfortunately in today’s society, you are both a person and that which you represent/work for. While he posted this on his personal facebook page, people see it as the stance of Supanova as a whole.

      This is very much the same matter that happened with Alison Rapp. She had personal comments on her persona Twitter page that people took to be a part of official Nintendo of America stances. I expect to see Daniel removed from Supanova very soon because of all this.

    • Unfortunately Daniel has used his personal FB before to make announcements about Supanova previously, including some deleted posts where he warned that same sex couples would be asked to leave if they did public displays of affection at the con because it is ‘family friendly’. He rightly got a lot of backlash there and has made many a con goer side eye anything he says.

    • This guy IS Supanova. He owns the company, therefore I feel his views are the position of Supanova. This is the same guy that had comics removed from the event a couple of years ago, because they featured homosexual characters and images; supposedly to protect children from this ‘sexualised’ content…but the other comics with half naked super hero women are of course perfectly fine…

  • The amount of unnecessary investigation and waste of taxpayer money into the safe schools program is disgusting. I’m glad that articles like this put into the spotlight the supporters of stripping a much needed program that aids vulnerable youth and seeks to educate others to help prevent bullying.

    I was part of this program during my last year of high school and could not be more grateful for the existence of the program. It provides a safe place for youth to discuss things that they do not feel comfortable mentioning to parents or teachers or even one on one with a counselor who may not have a good understanding of what they’re going through. For people who have no even looked at what exactly the program entails, (which is apparent from the last review which found that everything was appropriate) to come out to try and pull a vital program is inconsiderate and horrible.

    The panel is a nice gesture though and hopefully this response will allow Daniel to open up his views a bit more.

    • I was part of this program during my last year of high school and could not be more grateful for the existence of the program.

      That’s fine. But say for example, you were 5 years old, or the parent of a 5 year old. Do you really think that it would be a good thing to be discussing at that age level? Someone in High School has a completely different understanding and comprehension of the subject matter than a 5 year old, which is a part of the flaws in the program.

      • I would love for my 5 year old to be aware that there is more to gender than male or female. In saying that, I would definitely leave it up to the qualified teachers to decide.

        The program never taught anything explicit and in the older form of the program, allowed an exploration of diferent issues faced by people which was very interesting.

        • I would love for my 5 year old to be aware that there is more to gender than male or female.

          So, you would love your 5 year old to be lied to?

          • Where is the lie? This is the problem with stifling the spreading of awareness. While “sex” is confined to male or female and is determined at birth, gender is a social construction and is thought of as more of a spectrum than the binary of sex (sources: World health organisation, genderspectrum.org).

            To exclude the truth would be more of a lie.

          • How would you define someone as male or female? As in what characteristics does a male person have and what characteristics does a female have? Remember that we are not talking about purely physical attributes as these define your sex not your gender.

          • If you read what I wrote then it states “there is more to gender than male or female”, in other words; there is a spectrum of gender, there can also be lack of gender.

          • And I was asking what those genders are called. I firmly believe the gender and sex are the same thing and that the only determining factors are your genitalia. If a man thinks that he is a woman, that doesn’t make him any more a woman. If he wishes to be a female, then he can go and physically become a female. Me thinking I’m a snowman doesn’t make me any less human.

          • In response to your new comment that I can’t directly reply to for some reason: Terms exist such as genderfluid, agender, male, female, and there could be more.

            Your responses demonstrate a great example of why this sort of education is necessary in schools. For you to say that you don’t personally believe in it does not make it any less of a fact, much the same with anti-vaxers and climate change deniers. The fact is that sex and gender are considered different entities by expert bodies such as the World Health Organisation. Your personal beliefs do not change this.

          • gender is a social constructionWait, that’s what the thing was! Isn’t that whole concept based on that horrible experiment used by John Money to try and prove his theory that this was the case? Except it actually failed and did anything but.

  • Do you think we’ll get a litany article if/when the death threats start getting thrown Daniel Zachariou’s way?

    • Not likely, just some garbage about how people need to be held accountable for their point of view.

    • Articles? Nope. Not on here anyway.
      Death Threats? I wouldn’t be surprised if he hasn’t already copped them in the triple digits by now. Not counting all the threats made to Supanova as an organization calling for his termination from the event.

    • Of course… Kotaku is well known for it’s unbiased and fair reporting that doesn’t push any agendas or ideals whatsoever.

      Kidding aside, I absolutely feel most of the AU staffers like Serrels do a better job of remaining impartial than their US counterparts. Which is pretty much the only reason I still come here.

  • I’m sorry, but I have to bring it up. But do they really have to keep adding letters to their initialism? Every time I try to read content on the issues, I get four letters into it and get a headache. “LBGTQIA+”? What?

    I’m all for equality and have no issues with people’s preferences at all. But just continuing to slap letters on to the end, as well meaning as the different groups are, is starting to get a little silly.

    • People want to take the G out, because gay men aren’t marginalised enough.

      That’s not a joke.

    • Yup there is some around that think it’s time to drop this alphabet jumble and come up with a single word to cover all the things now.

      • I think this quote is what we should now refer to it as:
        “Betty has gone too far. Killing is wrong, and bad. There should be a new, stronger word for killing like badwrong or badong. Yes, killing is badong. From this moment, I will stand for the opposite of killing, gnodab”

        The new term is Gnodab.

      • There is a single word for this. It has been around for quite some time now I believe; it’s called “human”.

    • its a ‘look at me mentality’, rather than just being and existing with everyone else, those of us who arent of the half an alphabet, get smashed for having an opinion or belief that differs from what they do.
      im against safe schools because i dont believe a 5 year old needs to be taught anything about sex. they just need to be kids. im in the sam boat as Zachiarou, it needs to be modified. i see ho wit would be helpful to pre-teens and teens, but other than that – education for these topics need to be done by parents in my opinion.
      for the record i couldnt care less if someone was transgender or gay etc etc, i have gay family and friends, just stop force feeding me and trying to make an issue out of a non issue.

      • Definitely pre-teens, right when puberty is beginning and kids are starting to explore and learn more about their sexualities and their place in the world.

      • “existing with everyone else” Well, thats the issue, isn’t it? They don’t always get to. Those of us that are not in the alphabet most likely didn’t experience the bulling growing up, so a little bit more understanding is needed.

        • im by no means saying bullying is ok and that anyone should just get over it. but as a victim of certain things myself, im fully aware of how my victim mentality has caused me to perceive certain situations and behave in certain circumstances, which in hindsight neednt be that way. if i had got up, dusted myself off, taken of my tinted view of the world and just got on with things. a lot less offense would have been taken on my part and what i perceived as people being ‘against’ me, was not the case at all.

          so when i said ‘look at me’ mentality, maybe what i was trying to portray was a victim mentality. and yes, you are right to a degree, i can be so bold as to claim its the same for everyone, because that would be naive.

    • Well we did come up with a term to describe Queer, Homosexual, Transgender, Transsexual, Asexual, Pansexual, etc. But it wasn’t well received because it sounded condescending to call them “Not Straight”.

      Then there’s the term “Everyone Else”, because that’s what the name is meant to apply to. But then that’s creating sides to an argument that shouldn’t exist nor have sides.

      So perhaps calling us all people would work and then accepting difference? I mean, what’s the point in creating a divide between people based on such a thing. There’s no reason for heterosexuals and homosexuals to be on opposite sides of a coin.

      • I agree with what you have said. But why are you telling me?
        I’m not the one who came up with the current ‘term’. I’m simply saying that those that use it to define themselves and their contention, are making some interesting choices in continuing to add letters to it.

        Better off without any label at all? Yep, I’d be on board with that. We’re all people and that’s all that matters to me. Unfortunately, a large number of individuals in our society do still have an us-vs-them mentality, so some form of banner to unite under may be a necessary evil. I just think the banner is getting a bit too long and hard to pronounce.

        • I’m mostly replying to you not to tell you but more so to keep my comment in context with yours. And I do agree, it is currently a necessary evil to have a name for people to unite under.

      • Wait so what exactly is “queer” then? I thought it was meant to be some kind of all-encompassing term for the remainder not covered by LGBT, but then they added even more letters after it.

        • Well honestly I’m not sure how to define queer, it’s a little bit out of scope for me sorry. But I’d imagine that even if it was the all encompassing term, some people would prefer to have their specific orientation mentioned. After all there is not some major organization controlling the name. There’s still plenty of people that rally under LGBT as a name.

    • GSD might be easier to roll off the tongue for you

      Gender and Sexuality Diverse peoples

    • If it doesn’t have any effect on your life, i don’t see how it matters how many letters they like to have. Besides, by telling a group of “them” that they can’t have their own type of people represented as anything other than a nameless part of a catch-all, you’re essentially telling them they aren’t worth naming. This is exactly the reason we recognise aboriginal tribes instead of just calling everyone who has ancestry here “natives”. It would be disrespectful to just pretend that they were all one huge group.
      We recognise homosexual men and women by the group name. They are different groups. If every group wants to be differentiated from the others, it doesn’t hurt me at all and it helps them. So why not?

      • So why not?
        Because it creates a rift between people in the LGBT community and people that aren’t. I don’t understand why they always want to be seen as something different than other people but also want to be the same as them.

    • They need to add an “S” for all the straight people who support the cause. 😛

      • But that’s homophobic. That’s transphobic. You cis white scum are trying to enter into their domain. You’re trying to push yourselves into their group. You’re trying to straighten up the place.

        • I was going to reply properly to what you said to me before. Then I read this and realised that you don’t care and are here to call people stupid for caring about a thing.

  • I lean to the left – always have… Everyone, in a perfect world, should be equal and given the same opportunities…
    but holy shit the far left are SUPER sensitive… And pretty OTT… It’s actually seriously stupid seeing how triggered these people get… Everyone take a chill pill… Everyone is entitled to an opinion, even if it’s not the same as yours.

    • Would of there been the same reaction, if what happened previously with Adam Baldwin, hadn’t occurred though?

    • I used to left-lean (in fact I identified as an ancap for a while which is a bit paradoxical) but the shenanigans of the hypersensitive perpetual-victim left keeps driving me further away >.o

      To the point I actually find myself agreeing with people like Stephen Crowder and Milo Yiannopoulos/Breitbart on a lot of things :/

      Maybe I was always more of a right-leaner and just didn’t realise.

        • He’s my man crush at the moment. I only wish I was half as good looking as he is.

    • I’m definitely on the far left of the political spectrum, but I’ve realized a lot of people I agree with have borderline fascist tendencies. They totally go over the top in suppressing opinion (not action) to the point we’re even reasonable discussion can’t be had. That’s suppressing free speech whether the Government does it or not. What makes it worse it that because they do it via companies/boycotts rather than the Government (i.e. getting people fired), that somehow makes it better. It’s not better – we’re allowing companies to define appropriate political discourse. I think Telstra’s recent issues highlight the problems with that.

      Incidentally – I think Safeschools is fine, but it’s not as though Supernova as an organisation is proactively working against it. This boycott is just an attempt to suppress individual opinions (the guy signed a petition, that’s not the same as tricking third-world mothers into using formula).

  • Hey remember how Adam Baldwin turned up…… and nothing fucking happened?

    Good times.

  • No one is allowed to have opinions any more. No one is allowed to be different.

    Because..internet.

      • I think it’d be a bit more apt to say you’re not allowed to have an opinion once you’re in charge of something.

  • *sigh* People in the uproar are:
    1) Easily offended.
    2) Afraid of counter opinion and reasonable debate/discussion.
    3) Branding the opinions of an individual as the opinion of an event.
    I for one agree with his concern regarding age appropriate content with regards to the LBGTQIA+. Education is paramount to creating a more accepting conscientious community and the analysis/delivery behind that education, regardless of topic, must be scrutinised diligently.

    • 1) Maybe, but not necessarily.

      2) Reasonable debate and discussion became impossible when people who had no idea what they were talking about went on a witch hunt to destroy the program for Reasons and because someone had to Think Of The Children. Anyone with a reasonable point was shouted down by religious zealots and wowsers. Then the politicians who are scared of losing the votes of the wowsers decided to also weigh in on things they had done no research on.

      3) The owners of Chick-fil-a in the US had personal opinions and then used their organisation to push the political and social landscape of the country in that direction. The direction was to deny people human rights. I’m not saying that this guy is the same, but there’s no escaping that having money, power, or a platform will allow you to push your beliefs onto others. I mean, look at Australia and coal. People who own businesses aren’t really ever separate from them. It matters what they say and how they react.

      Nobody who has actually been a part of the program in any way has ever said there was a problem with age appropriateness. The only people who have are guessing that there might be so have decided to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

  • What shits me about SJWs is …
    1) These so god-damn perfect they cannot tolerate anyone else making a mistake. The guy apologised!
    2) They are (ironically ) so intolerant they can’t abide anyone having a different opinion. We live in a massive melting pot of viewpoints and opinions and some are not going to agree with yours. Simply disagree and move on!

    That said … I now have said I disagree with their standpoint and I’m moving on. It would be nice if they could do the same.

    EDIT: I didn’t think this needed to be said but I am not a Gamegater. The reason I didn’t decry them is because the article is not about them. It’s about the people boycotting a convention. However seemingly to some people, if you’re decry one side, you must be the other side. I see the the extreme elements of both sides as two sides of a very stupid coin.

    • Social justice warrior is not an insult. Having empathy for marginalised and underrepresented people is not a negative.

    • you know what shits me… is those who use the term SJW as form of apparent insult to those of us grown up enough to be a bloody decent human beings. its not about be a white knight, or seeking justice, it is just about treating every with the same respect.

      honestly the only people in the world I have no time for are gamergaters and any lame sod who uses the term SJW. both have proved time and again they arent worthy of respect or have any views that even remotely border on coherent.

          • Bigoted: obstinately or unreasonably attached to a belief, opinion, or faction, and intolerant towards other people’s beliefs and practices.

            eg. pokedad

            You see you’ve taken a person who doesn’t agree with “some parts” of a programme which automatically makes them to you “transphobic/homophobic” and “denying people rights” because you are a bigot.

          • Using a dictionary isn’t the same as understanding usage and context. You consistently get things so utterly arse backwards that I’m convinced you’re doing it to get a rise out of people.

            So I guess you won this round? gg

          • Oh please just admit you are one mate. You are time and again just as bigoted to the core as those you rant at. Look at the hyperbolic shit shaming mission you’re on and tell me you’re “tolerant”. Keep that virtue signalling flame high!

          • I’m not tolerant of your grade A bullshit bigotry. Not tolerating bigots isn’t “intolerance”. If you actually understand how context in the English language works, you should realise that in this case “intolerance” means actively denying rights to people from minority groups.

            I accept that there are people who are different to me and I believe that they deserve to be able to live without bigots fucking up their lives. If that makes me an SJW, then fine by me.

          • Rubbish… You’ve blown this up with exaggerations such as “declaring war on your existence” and dismissing views because they won’t fit into your intolerant attachment to your belief and that any slight deviance from that automatically makes one a homophobe, transphobe or a bigot.

            Context is fine mate. You’re a bigot.

            Actively denying rights? He was questioning parts of a programme specifically regarding age and content. But apparently that’s denying someone their existence! Please…

          • shhhhh….regressive’s can’t be bigots because they’re always right. Get with the program!

            I think we’re going to need a safe space in here very soon…

          • @mypetmonkeyHe was questioning parts of a programme specifically regarding age and content.

            Actually he just posted a link to a petition to scrap the program altogether. His reasoning came later, and even then could be seen as him back-pedalling to avoid the backlash. Sure, the program isn’t perfect (let’s be honest, what govt. program is?), but tweaking the details is a far cry from scrapping an important program altogether.

          • claiming someone does know what a word means.

            “Using a dictionary isn’t the same as understanding usage and context.”

            Context was fine, so was usage. Assertion reasonable.

            The concept you’re looking for is nuance.

          • He completely misunderstood the context that it was being used in for the conversation. The word has multiple definitions and he was working on the one that suited his argument rather than the one that was established.

            Nuance would be more to do with the kind of emotional or social weight applied to a word or phrase despite similar dictionary meanings. We have a lot of nuance in how we use euphemism in place of a much more direct word. We don’t say someone is dead. We say they passed on. It’s the same basic meaning, but nuance changes everything.

      • Because warrior = extreme apparently. Yet bigots kill women, black, gay and trans people, their attitudes contribute to a society that normalizes their murder (Between May 27 and June 2, more than 8 women in the US were murdered by their partners. That’s a fucking week. The article I read that in had people commenting more murders too.) and suicide. They try to take our rights away and yet we’re supposed to be civil. Good manners doesn’t stop oppression. Am I supposed to ask nicely, ‘Can you please stop oppressing me?’.

        And we’re the extreme ones apparently.

        • Exactly.

          When someone declares war on your existence, you are expected to ask them nicely to stop fighting. That’s bullshit.

          • “Declares war” oh dear the hyperbole. Daniel Zachariou further explained his stance, he disagrees with parts of the programme.

            That’s allowed last time I checked and wasn’t a declaration of war.

          • Holy shit, do you even context?

            No shit, you need to learn to parse the English language.

          • Understand it fine. I can see you have little time for self reflection right now.

            You’ve got your pitchfork, flaming torch,a noose, a bag of tar and some feathers and have got you a lynching to go to for slight disagreement thought crimes against other peoples who need your help (except if they don’t agree with you)…

          • The comment I was replying to was not about the thing you said it was. You don’t understand the conversation, even though you insist you do.

            No amount of ridiculous tar and feather simile will change the fact that you consistently start arguments about things you don’t understand just to have someone to fight. Go be a jerk somewhere else.

          • Lets be honest… I showed you up again…. I’m sorry.

            Please, continue with your bigotry.

      • So… you’re totally against the rather nebulous derogatory term “SJW”, and then go and employ an equally ridiculous term like “gamergater”.

        Gamergater is pretty much in the same boat as SJW – it describes an absurdly angry person out to suppress conversation under the guise of claiming the moral high ground, and they accomplish this by slandering anyone who doesn’t agree with them.

        If you’re a “bloody decent human being” you aren’t part of the group that the term “SJW” gets directed towards… because if you’re constantly out to find reasons to be offended and sending death threats while crying that you’re being sent death threats, then you’re not a decent bloody human fucking being!

        • with all the death and rape threats and any attack and use of the word SWJ, some gamergaters have used immediately rendered any tolerance to their brainless cause null. they are morons who are ruining the gaming community at the moment, they arent worthy of any respect.

          PS those two camps you think of arent not the same. SWJ is used to judge anyone who stands up to sexist and racist loons.

          • Lol, you seem to think I support gamergate. I don’t. I’m pointing out the irony that the SJW moniker is often applied to the hateful vocal minority engaging in their own “kill yourself cis scum!” campaigns including social media abuse and doxing, under the guise of social justice. It’s about ethics in gaming? Sounds an awful lot like ‘it’s about social justice’!

            You seem happy with the diluted sensationalised ‘gamergater’ title yet clearly upset by SJW because it doesn’t neatly fit your world view. I don’t even think you really know what ‘gamer gate’ is (hint: the term is practically meaningless now)

          • I’m upset by people who use SWJ because it is moronic. In much the same ways online people think they sound clever when they use terms like Strawman. Its one of those terms people throw out when they are trying to act ‘Right’, when they are trying to close an argument with no facts or enlightenment.

            They use it as short hand for “I am right because you are wrong. END OF STORY.”. News flash: there is no right or wrong in the world just opinion.

            Sorry if I presumed you are a GG because it is my experience that main people who use it are them because that is their normal way to end whatever hate they are throwing around, for them it has become a “I am right because you are nothing but a SWJ”

            Sure their might be some good GG people and some good people who use SWJ for fair reasons but sorry its has got to the point now where the world is a brighter place to just ignore those things, if civilised world has existed for 10, 000 years I dont need to use terms a year or two old, I would rather talk about my opinions like an adult.

        • Gamergate took an actual issue and used it as a shield to make excuses for a bullshit misogyny campaign.
          Game journalism has serious fucking problems, but threatening to rape a game developer for releasing a free game about something you don’t care about because her ex boyfriend thinks she maybe fucked a dude who works for a gaming website is not how to fix it.
          There are plenty of people with very good points about why the gaming media is a garbage pile, but they have allied themselves with some shitty people and stolen their own thunder.

          • Yes, people did that. Just like a lot of people hiding under the guise of social justice and oppression have launched their own hateful attacks on others with the same language. Hell, sometimes they even eat their own. My point is that shitty people are shitty people whatever side you identify with. If you’re sending death threats and calling for people or businesses they are a part of to be ruined because they offend you, then you’ve probably lost the moral high ground you sought to claim.

          • I agree to an extent, but I’ve seen very little evidence that people on the anti-gamergate side have done anything like that. The difference between the so-called SJW people and the self titled Gamergate people, is that Gamergate was pretty much created specifically as a vehicle to harass people. If it made some salient points, that’s just a happy accident. Anyone aligning themselves to Gamergate out of a real attempt to reform the gaming media was tricked into supporting a lie.

      • Firstly, I classify SJWs at the extreme of the scale. If you’re not part of the extreme, my post doesn’t apply to you. If you are part of the extreme, I’m sorry for you. You’re one of the bigoted arseholes I’m referring to who doesn’t want to listen to anyone else who has a different point of view.

        Secondly, if you’ve made a whole heap of assumptions that I’m a gamergater, then you are seriously mistaken. I treat all people with respect, regardless of race, color, sexuality, religion or belief. SJWs on the other hand have NO such respect for other people’s opinions. That’s why they are “Warriors”; they feel the need to slay non-existent dragons that just happen to be people with different points of view.

        Oh and nice way to show your colors, lumping all people who may have an opinion on gamergate as the same. It just goes to show how small minded you are.

        • bahahaha not sure if this is satire because people use SWJ as an insult for any with a social conscience. these warriors you talk of dont exists just like SWJ themselves. It is a stupid term made up by fools and used by even worse ones. There is a huge cross over of the two lots of people. it is used by those GG idiots to make themselves feel important. Now I could give you the benefit of the doubt but heres the thing even if you dont mean and even if you do care for minorities , the mere fact you are using such vapourware expression means that all the interesting things you could say unfortunately get lost… basically any using the turn SWJ is like someone starting a sentence with “im not racist but”, sure every and again the person every isnt but the bulk of them normally are.

          lumping the too together is not being simple minded, 30mins of an reddit thing regarding Anita (EG) or like proves my point for me

          • I love how you assume I’m a GG. You actually know nothing about me, but you’ve already decided you do.

            The funny thing is that SJW as just as rabid as the GG they have declared war on. Sections of both sides are such extreme zealots that have a narrow view of the world, they are blind to anyone else’s viewpoint. The zealotry descends into a religious war where each side considers themselves some kind of holy warrior on their own crusade.

            Guess what … the world doesn’t need another war. What it needs is people to listen to each other and stop bickering and treat all people with respect.

          • It’s what they do, they project.

            They have this evil boogeyman theory in their head and anyone that doesn’t follow to the exact letter or asks questions gets the whole bag of projection dumped on them.

        • You should let other people tell you if your behaviour is “respectful” to them.

          Should I respect the opinion that I am disgusting and evil for being attracted to other men?

          Should I respect the opinion that my relationships are invalid, and should not be given equal status to heterosexual relationships?

          Should I respect the opinion of people who want to forcibly remove me from society?

          Should I respect the opinions of people who think I should be murdered?

          People with “different points of view” are a very real threat to me, and to other gay people. I personally know individuals who had to leave their families and communities because they were afraid for their lives.

          It’s just a matter of “opinion” for you, but it could literally be life or death for me. It is life or death for a lot of gay people.

          • I’m sorry, could you please keep your voice down? Otherwise you won’t be able to hear the conservative straight white males here telling you how you should be thinking.

            But they’re cool with you being gay and will take great pains to tell you and everyone else about it, so that makes it OK.

            To be serious for a second, you do realise these guys here literally have no idea what you are talking about? These are people who do not for a second accept they are the most privileged people in the world. They post on here day in, day out, telling everyone how persecuted white males are because *gasp* people are finally calling them on the things they say and do.

            Unlike you, they have no idea whatsoever what it would be like to be judged simply for holding the hand of their partner.

            They have no idea what it would be like to be utterly refused equal rights based on the gender of the person they choose to love.

            They have no idea what it would be like to be driven to end your life simply because you have been told so many times that you are worthless based on your essential identity.

            They have no idea that for most of human history, people like you were beaten, tortured and murdered in their millions simply based on who they were.

            These guys have no idea, and never, ever will. They are quite literally so choked on their own privilege, and so in denial about it, that your comments will never reach them.

            Thing is, and this is the bad part, they know this.

            They aren’t stupid, they know perfectly well how privileged they are, and what it means.

            All these comments in here, and the other areas of their life, are their desperate scrabbling to hold on to the entirety of their privilege.

            It’s nothing personal – as they will tell you, they are all for gays!

            Just not at the expense of a single scrap of their own power.

            So don’t waste your time. These guys are too scared. They want the world to stay exactly the way it is, because they lack the courage to embrace change and work with it.

            If that means people like you get screwed over, well, I am sure they will say they sympathise but, you know, that’s how it is.

            Have you tried not being gay?

        • ” I treat all people with respect, regardless of race, color, sexuality, religion or belief.”
          *follows with*
          “SJWs on the other hand have NO such respect for other people’s opinions. That’s why they are “Warriors”; they feel the need to slay non-existent dragons that just happen to be people with different points of view.”

          So not all people then.

          You, like the SJWs, apply respect based on your own ideological perspectives as you’re a human being and just as fallible as everyone else who doesn’t regularly self-check their own views.

          Sorry if I blew your mind 🙁

  • I’m gay, and I don’t support the “safe schools” program, at least not in its current form. In either regard, SJW’s just refuse to allow people the freedom to form their own opinions and get offended on other peoples behalf. Its exactly the same as watching a baby throw a tantrum. Pathetic.

    • I’m gay, and I support the Safe Schools program, completely.

      You’re right, I don’t have a blanket tolerance for other people’s opinions about homosexuality, because their opinions are the reason I don’t have certain basic rights. Their opinions are the reason I got the shit kicked out of me as early as Kindergarten, before I knew what “gay” even MEANT.

      “SJW’s” aren’t hurting you, homophobes are hurting you. Daniel Zachariou is hurting you! He has publicly stated before that he would evict gay people from Supanova if they kissed in public! That’s not an “opinion”, that is him actively oppressing you!

      And furthermore, your sexuality doesn’t make you an authority on what gay people need, or how they should be treated. You complain about other people “speaking for you”, but you are giving bigots permission to oppress me, and yourself, and every other gay person.

  • Funny how people have an issue with “indoctrination” when it doesn’t line up with their values.. the “safe” school program, simply put, is indoctrination

  • It’s pretty funny that most conservative comments here focus on attacking the people who hold the more inclusive views (ironically, as most are carrying on about being attacked for their views) rather than coming up with a proper, logical retort than the “age-appropriate” argument which was explored nicely by busrat011899 and mic.

  • Another article that serves to re-enforce the face that Social Media is the worst ‘invention’ in the history of man kind. People who should not have their opinions heard are able to project them to the entire world with the click of a button. Then more people able to cry about how they were offended because of some words on a computer screen.

    Look at what has become of an entire generation. Absolutely pathetic.

    • There’s also the fact that this generation worships celebrities, and treats them like they are Gods. What a time to be alive.

    • I am pretty sure you’re unaware of the irony of what you are doing here but thank you anyway.

  • I’m completely confused with the LBGTQIA+
    I only (think I) know what the L, the G and the T stand for.
    What about the others? Why is there a plus sign???

      • Thanks!…I just realised that I am not a socially aware as I thought I was…
        I got T wrong because I though it was Transgender, i thought Queer was a derogatory term for gays and lesbians, and I don’t know what a Asexual or an intersex person is…

        • Asexual= doesn’t consider themself gendered
          Intersex= people with sexual characteristics of both genders

          Queer is kind of a catch-all term for “outside of heteronormative but not inside one of the other neat categories.”

          Which is kinda what the + is about too. In some formulations you’ll see “Q: as “Questioning”

          • asexual- no sexual attraction or feelings (NOTE THIS IS COMPLETELY DIFFERENT FROM EMOTIONAL FEELINGS TOWARDS A PERSON, a person can still be asexual but deeply in love with someone)
            non binary- if we are throwing terms out there is more for those of us who don’t fit in neat little gender buckets. (although I just say trans because people don’t understand when I say I am a person and explaining non binary is just too much trouble. the concept of gender being a spectrum is just too hard to wrap one’s head around who was conditioned from that very young age of day 1 of their life that there can be only 2)

            which incidentally because of that binary nature of society is precisely the reason why letting people know the world isn’t binary at a young age would be a positive thing for a child’s development (In my opinion)

            It is society’s ironic need to label something and define it into a bucket, sexuality or gender wise when both are completely fluid non bucketing things which makes it all complicated.

        • Asexual was someone who has no sexual/romantic inclinations to any member of either the same or opposite sex. It also means reproduction without sexual organs.

          Intersex = actually both anatomically man & woman concurrently due to reasons I don’t understand and never bothered to explore more.

      • Google interprets a plus as ‘and’ basically. Look at the url and you’ll see. Quotes will ignore that.

      • The plus may just be for including anyone else or terms to come in the future? But i don’t know for sure

    • The + represents all of the genders, sexualities, and sexes that aren’t contained within the acronym; it’s a symbol of inclusivity.

      If you’re interested in learning more about the terms that make up the acronym, the ABC has a nice little primer: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-04-07/sexuality-gender-glossary-definitions/7287572

      And many universities now have resource centers for LGBTQIA subjects. UC Davis has a particularly good glossary, and sections on being an ally (someone who promotes equity and inclusivity with regard to LGBTQIA; a supporter): http://lgbtqia.ucdavis.edu/educated/index.html

  • Daniel does have the freedom to his own opinions, but let’s not forget that when Supanova was a much smaller affair, he did ban crossplay. That’s his own personal beliefs intruding on the event. I’d suggest the massive success of Supanova means he’s had to be a bit more careful with his bigotry since, but this guy has a clear precedent in letting his personal beliefs dictate his event policy.

    There’s a bit more on it here: http://www.bleedingcool.com/2016/06/05/transgender-politics-and-australias-supernova-comic-con/

  • Doesn’t matter if he has a valid point or not – you stay out of politics if you’re after public attendance and support.

  • You know what I agree with him to behonest keep this shit away from the kids,its not needed hell the lgbt community just wants to start up more shit and to be frank something like that would never fly over here, the smarter option is to have them attend optional classes about it in highschool say about yr10-yr12 not at such a young age.

    • It’s fantastic how conservatives always are the ones with the most atrocious spelling and grammar. It’s a gift that keeps on giving.

      And do you know how I know you get your information about Safe Schools from the Daily Telegraph and/or chain emails from elderly relatives?

      • As opposed to Red Flag right comrade?

        Get those kiddies in early for correct thinking as per the state required guidelines dah!

        • You ARE aware that every form of Communism that has been deployed in the real world is conservative?

          That each and every one has been an authoritarian regime precisely predicated on conserving a set of specific values?

          I sometimes wonder if you conservatives actually realise what it is you are arguing against.

          Actually I don’t wonder, I know that you are blind to the cognitive dissonance surrounding you.

          • Stop being a bigoted authoritarian conservaphobe Burnside.

            It’s always a good chuckle to see you and your ilk stumble to reach the levels of tolerance you impose on others.

            Project away champ. Have you told Roz Ward she’s a conservative? Or do you make exceptions when it suits?

  • Storm in a teacup?
    Thanks to Supanova’s organiser I’ll continue to take my kids to the event every year. I think this is the best promotion kids’ oriented event could get.

  • Equality. Dose anyone here know what this word means? You go on about it all the time, but I never seen anyone actually practicing equality. Instead, you do the exact opposite.

    Equality is very simple. You, as a person, are to be respected in the same capacity as others. And in return, you do the same for ALL other people. There opinions may differ from yours, but it gives you no right to clam sexism or racism. None. Being offended is on you, not them. You have a right to YOUR option, and to conduct YOUR life how you see fit. This apply to ALL people, not just the Trans or Gay or Black or ect communitys. Stop being a bigot. Start acting like you want equality, rather than just saying you want it. Be a person, not a persona, and stop being offended by every little thing someone says, because in the long run, it just makes you the bad person.

    As for the Safe Schools program, I think you have proven his point by acting in this way. Safe Schools is meant to be teaching kids about bulling, and what it dose to people that are effected, and yet hear you all are bulling him over his opinion. Like, what sort of message is that sending? Just grow up. Be an adult. Don’t act like a little kid every time someone says something.

    • Fifty bucks says you are a Libertarian. I know this because you are employing a philosophical argument a five year old can deconstruct.

      I’ll give you the simple version.

      Equality is not about ‘respect’, it’s actually about power. Respect is simply one of the ways of expressing this.

      Your view of equality is predicated on a level playing field of power. If that were the case, you would be right.

      But this status quo has never existed in human history.

      This ‘being offended’ that so offends you is how power imbalances get addressed. You see otherwise you simply condone and support the existing power structures.

      The inability to understand this is the basic issue with contemporary internet Libertarian burblings about equality.

      But given the vast majority of contemporary internet Libertarians are the people who sit close to the global summit of the power inequality pyramid, this isn’t exactly a surprise.

  • Ok, firmly standing in the middle of the issue and not taking any position in the topic in question, I really have to wonder: Is it really going to be impossible to be a honest critic of measures that involve the LGBT community? Are we 100% confident that every single decision EVER taken in favour of LGBT people is going to be fair, necessary, risk-free, a good investment, etc, etc, etc? Are they, unlike us pig-cis-folk, holy, all-knowing and infallible? We better hope that’s the case because we are making it so that criticism, completely independent of value and warrant is being immediately quashed off with a swift application of the pariah-rendering label of “homophobe”. Examples like this go to show that you are literally risking your livelihood if you ever dare to question a LGTB initiative.

    • You’re not standing “in the middle” of anything, you are painting LGBT people as violent oppressors, when in fact, they have been, and are, denied basic rights that you take for granted.

      Being labelled a homophobe doesn’t make anyone a “pariah”, and never has. Cory Bernadi hasn’t suffered in the slightest, and in fact, he got exactly what he wanted, which was an audit into (and ultimately the discontinuation) of the Safe Schools Program.

      The only people being hurt are LGBT. While you pretend to be a victim of some imaginary cis-oppression movement, gay kids are having a program that demonstrably reduced bullying taken away from them.

    • It is not impossible to critique measures involving a minority. Consultation with the group in question and an understanding of the subject matter before wading into discourse are simple ways to foster an environment of constructive criticism. Both methods are sorely lacking when it comes to this issue.

      • Note that this originated from a post on a person’s (not the company) personal Facebook page. He was not starting a discourse, he was expressing a personal opinion/criticism. People dug this out, dragged his private and public endeavours (like Supanova) over it and now are seeking to destroy an event that represents the livelihood of that person and several others. He’s literally being made an example of. I don’t know what name are we going to give to the social paradigm of 0 tolerance to anything not 100% supportive of LGTB that we are moving towards, but I can tell you that it should have the suffix -archy attached to it.

        • This is what you consider to be “standing in the middle” and “not taking a position”? You are blatantly trying to drum up fear of some sort of LGBT-controlled, totalitarian state. Putting aside the fact that such a society does not, and has never existed anywhere in the world, we don’t even have the right to marry our long-term partners! The notion that Australia is in danger of becoming a Queer-controlled fascist state is delusional paranoia at best.

          As for Daniel Zacahriou, he’s experiencing nothing more than the same consequences that everyone, famous or not, has to face when they make their political opinions public. He is in no danger whatsoever of losing his livelihood, at all, just like he didn’t lose his livelihood when he banned crossplay from Supanova, or when he said same-sex couples would be kicked out for PDA! Being a homophobe doesn’t have any consequences, not really. It sure hasn’t hurt Cory Bernardi, or the rest of the Liberal Party for that matter, and it never hurt Orson Scott Card. Criticism isn’t a “consequence”, it’s something that everybody has to face at multiple points in their life.

          Let’s also not forget that many LGBT people are actually protecting Zachariou’s livelihood by continuing to support Supanova, despite the fact that it’s event director has been openly homophobic and transphobic on more than one occasion!

          If you care so much about other people’s livelihood, where are you when LGBT people lose their jobs for the heinous offence of simply existing?

  • A few lines from a TISM song to mind…
    Daniel Zachariou may be a C$#T but he is not a F$#King C$#T

  • Here is my Question: What year is Sex Ed now taught in shool theses day. I ask this because for me personally in NSW we had a Sex Ed session in year 5 and 6 and then again in years 8, 9 and 10. I will add that was during the mid to late 90s (I finished year 12 in 2000)

    Because it seems to me that issues about LGBTI+ should be taught as part of Sex Ed and as part of PE/PHD classes

    • Gender identity and sexual orientation is not necessarily a nuts and bolts sexual topic. You can teach kids that “some people might want to grow up and marry/love someone of the same gender” without having to elaborate on sex acts.

  • There was a point when my traditional upbringing informed my bias against LGBT rights … until I had a gay son. I love my son with all of my heart, which breaks to think he’ll have to batte for the same freedoms I’ve taken for granted and experience bigotry and persecution.

    Trust me, the unfortunate resistance to LGBT people/rights is a whole different ball game when someone you love is gay.

  • seriously.. its not like people have to have their gender preference printed on their badges, I could walk past 1000 people at the event and have no clue as to what gender they think they are, what sexual preference they prefer, nor how they live their lives outside of the expo and more to the point, I don’t give a crap about any of that at all.

    I have friends who are gay, both male and female, I recently made a connection with a transgender person and nothing they do personally has any impact on me or my life. If they asked me to help them move, I would do so, if they said lets head out and grab some beers, I would do that. Expecting people who identify differently to yourself to be strange is just wrong, Gay people don’t hate on me because I am straight, so why should I hate them them for being Gay.

    And finally to all these people complaining about the man who runs the show, that is the same as stating you hate all of a country because of its leader. The people who work to make the shows the best they can be are not this man, they might have the same thoughts, but they are not telling people not to come. The guests who travel from all around the world are doing so to meet fans, not get involved in this and then there are those who use events like this to let loose, dress up like their favourite character and have a little fun. If you feel that you would be discriminated against at any expo or event, I urge you to think about how, unless you tell every single person you meet you hate them, most people won’t care what you wear or what you are doing.

  • Not that this will likely be seen because of the huge number of posts in this article; But here is a fun story for you all.

    A few years back now, the team at Supanova wanted to add “Cosplay Dating” like overseas conventions have. The overseas conventions also allow gay and bisexual people to participate in the speed dating style event. Upper management at Supanova wasn’t happy with the idea of those groups being involved as they wanted to keep it their definition of “family friendly”, so they blocked the motion to create the event.

    Basically I think they realised that they would have to try to force the dating to be heterosexual only to suit their views, which would bring down an absolute shit storm on them (as it should really). As such, they opted just to kill it entirely to avoid any form of unwanted conflict.

  • Fuck me, now I remember why I only read these threads now and don’t actively take place in them. Ahm oot.

  • I know I’m going to catch flak for this but let’s have a show of hands, so to speak: how many people here, who are adults or even in highschool now, were made aware in school during their early childhood of gender fluidity, orientation, identity, transgender, etc? How many of those that weren’t now view those who identify/are as genderfluid/trans/whathaveyou as anything different from anyone else? Probably not all that many, right?

    My point is this: children at a young age are very aware of their surroundings, probably even more so than we were at a young age. If many of us grew up during an era that was less accepting of those who identified differently from the perceived norm, but we still accept it now as being nothing out of the norm, then why do we need to have it rubbed in the faces of future generations at an early age when it’s generally already accepted by our society? If we want children to be more accepting and understanding of this, then make it feel like the norm in the what they take in outside of school like children’s shows, books, etc. We already see this in a multitude of games now. Sure, there are always going to people who don’t agree but the majority will grow to see it as the norm and, in time, it won’t even be a thing anymore. I don’t know about the rest of you, and maybe it was just a sign of the times, but whenever differences between some children and others were pointed out during my early school years, it rarely made anyone more accepting of those difference; it just made them more obvious and blaring regardless of the school’s intent.

  • So, I don’t really understand. How does not wanting your kids to learn about sex and sexuality at the age of 5 make you a bigot, a homophobe and a transphobe? Seriously, I don’t understand. I would not want my child learning about that stuff at such a young age. I believe it will mess with their heads and make them think that they are gay or trans when they really aren’t. I just think that it’s really not something children should learn about until they are old enough to fully comprehend and understand what’s happening.

    Also, call me a bigoted, homophobic, transphobic nazi if you will, but what the hell is “QIA+” in LGBTQIA+?

    • im not sure if its the Q or I but one them is term used to discribe hemaphrodites ( a person born with both male and female genitals

    • I don’t fully understand this argument. You’re not against explaining that “Mum and Dad love each other very much”, why is it so bad to teach kids that it’s possible to have two Dads or two mums that also love each other very much. Sexuality does not always equal sex. To me, it’s important to teach kids that just because something is unfamiliar to them, it doesn’t make it strange.

      Q- Queer – often used as an umbrella term or alternative that can cover multiple terms such as gay, lesbian, bisexual and more. Someone may feel uncomfortable identifying as a specific group and much rather be seen a queer

      I – Intersex – someone who’s sexual anatomy does not correspond full with either male or female. (please note, it does not mean hermaphrodite, a term meaning someone with both full sets of genitalia something that does not occur in humans)

      A – Asexual – Someone who is not sexually attracted to any group

    • Teaching children that gay people exist will not make them gay. Most people i know over the age of 20 were brought up in a society that did not have any gay representation at all. All of the media we consumed was overwhelmingly straight. To use your logic we would all be straight today purely because we weren’t taught to be gay.

    • What makes you a bigot, specifically? The fact that you are threatened by your child even questioning their sexuality at all, just for starters.

      Nothing and nobody has the ability to “turn” your children gay, but you’d know that already, if you had ever made any effort to actually educate yourself on the issue. If it were possible to alter people’s sexuality through “education”, then homosexuality would already have been eliminated, because society was been “teaching” everybody that it’s wrong to be gay for literally centuries before a counter-argument gained any traction at all.

      Since you believe that learning about sexuality will “mess” with your kids’ heads, then can I presume that you will also wait until the early teens before you teach your kids about heterosexual relationships? After all, you wouldn’t want them to think they’re straight and cis when they really aren’t, would you???

      • To be honest, I wouldn’t even teach my kids about anything sexual. It’s a natural thing that they just learn by themselves. If they want to be gay, then they can be gay. I don’t need to tell them what gay is. Gay is a pretty common thing nowadays. I’m sure my kid has the ability to learn things without being explicitly taught them. Hell, that’s how I learn things. I didn’t need anybody to tell me what sex is or what being homosexual meant.

  • While i have no issue with this kind of education in high schools what are they doing thinking its ok for 5yr old kids? seriously wtf?

    • When I was a 5 year-old kid, I was already getting beaten up at school because other kids thought I was “gay”. That was my introduction to the concept of homosexuality, and I continued to receive that “education” until Year 11.

      Waiting until High School to teach kids to respect LGBT people is too late. Kids have already been sent home with black eyes. Kids have already killed themselves.

      It is ignorant and naive to think that kids aren’t already aware of these concepts. But go ahead and wring your hands about “age appropriate”. Who cares if kids die in the meantime?

      • Trying to think back, I have a specific memory of being in year 4 (so… about 9?) and one of the guys had a tendency to hang out with the girls at lunch, which (ironically?) got him labelled as gay. Though I can’t at all remember actually being aware of what homosexuality was at all. I know at the same time I knew the word “fuck” and that it was a very bad word but again, fairly sure I had no clue then what it actually meant. It’s really hard to figure out just when all these little bits of knowledge came to be, though I presume it must’ve come about by year 6 once we actually had our first round of sex education.

  • I really love these ‘Whoops I displayed my bigotry publicly now I am being called out, time to pretend I didn’t actually do it and plead ignorance but while doing so I kind of need to still keep defending the bigotry that I totally didn’t display.’ social media events.

    It’s not a secret the guy is a conservative with pretty hardcore views. The conservatives pretending otherwise are being disingenuous at best.

    The actual question is whether people want his conservatism to be a factor in patronising his events or not, so let’s not waste time pretending he is ignorant of what he did.

  • As a trans woman, I’m just dissapointed.

    This is a perfect opportunity for us all to further the discussion about inclusion and equity in public spaces/events, but it has instead turned into even more division. A distraction that detracts from the heart of the issue.

    I felt the apology by Daniel, and the action taken by Supernova is a step in the right direction for LGBTIQ+ people.
    It deeply saddens me that some members of the queer community are so thirsty for blood that they seem unable to seperate that an individual can stand in opposition to some part of Safe Schools and not be homophobic/transphobic.

    Let’s start these discussions with some respect and dignity for all difference. Even if an opinion is divurgent from your own it can still hold a great deal of merit if it is allowed to be explored.

    • Are you sure you don’t want blame conservatives a thousand times and mourn about the global summit of the power inequality pyramid?

    • What saddens me is that a trans person would be so completely ignorant about Safe Schools and the good it does for LGBT Youth. Being in opposition to a program that is proven to reduce LGBT bullying is homophobic and transphobic.

      Daniel Zachariou’s apology is completely meaningless. This isn’t the only time he’s displayed homophobia and transphobia. He’s already had opportunities to learn from his behaviour and he didn’t. He didn’t learn when he banned crossplay, he didn’t learn when he banned same-sex kissing for not being “family friendly”.

      I and other LGBT people shouldn’t have to wait for Supanova to “step in the right direction”, they had years to get with the program already. There are other conventions I can go to, if I was so inclined, where I don’t have to worry about being kicked out for kissing my boyfriend. I don’t need Supanova, and I have the right to withhold my money from any business I choose, for any reason I please!

      If Supanova shuts down because not enough people attend it, then that’s their own fault for offering a sub-par service, compared to other, more welcoming conventions.

      • I’m sorry you feel saddened by my opinion.

        I’m neither ignorant about safe schools or the good it does for LGBT youth, I am in fact working within a Melbourne school that has had some great success with the program.
        Just because I believe in it, doesn’t mean everyone has to. I recognise my bias. Parents have the right to object to programs that are offered within the education system (i.e – sex education, religious education, who teaches their children/and what) and safe schools like -any- initiative that is run within a school should be subject to scrutiny.

        I wasn’t aware of the history of Supanova if what you have written is true. Certainly that sounds rather restrictive and I can see why people would take issue with policies like those. I have a male partner and present female, so I haven’t run into that discrimination at Supanova. If I did, I wouldn’t go again.

  • Get the F^%^ over it, so it come to the point that people cant express opinions on their own page without someone getting their panties in a knot. Truthfully parents should be talking to their kids about lbgt issues when they are ready and not leaving it to the overworked teachers to do it for them.

    • What do you do when the parents tell their LGBT kids that they are disgusting, and should kill themselves?

      • And who’s to say the teachers wont, or social media or any number of ways kids learn stuff these days.

        • That is the whole point of safe schools. To tell these kids that they aren’t alone. They aren’t disgusting and they shouldn’t kill themselves.

        • A teacher who is caught being openly bigoted will be fired, at least from a public school. If someone is openly bigoted on social media, they will receive criticism, as we’ve seen with poor, sensitive Daniel Zachariou.

          LGBT kids with homophobic, abusive parents have no protection unless they actively seek it out themselves, which they won’t necessarily be in a position to do.

  • Good on Daniel! Roz Ward is a Marxist nutcase & all safe schools is is a platform to push her wacked out agenda.

  • All I’ve realised after 10 or so years on social media is that the internet still isn’t the best medium to have a (proper adult) discussion on such issues

    late to the ‘party’

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