On Marriage Equality

Paper Mountain - October 5, 2017

As the General Manager of Paper Mountain, I would like to share with you my perspective, and where Paper Mountain stands with the marriage equality postal survey.

Writing this saddens me. It does so, because I cannot fathom how hard it must be, for my friends, artists and colleagues to be the target of spite and hate.

I don’t need to tell you that this is a waste of money. Or that it’s a waste of time. Or that this postal vote is nonbinding. We know this.

I don’t need to tell you how disgraceful it is, when members of our parliament (not all) whom we’ve elected have put this back onto Australians to decide how people show their love.

What I want you to consider, is the actual cost of this survey.

It’s not just $122M. It’s the cost of paying senators, who we voted to represent Australians, but instead debated the issue over years, only to place it back on us.

It’s the cost of time to Australians who are debating, discussing and rallying when our parliament could have just made a decision.

It’s the emotional cost experienced by vulnerable members of our community.

It’s the emotional cost of having communities divided. Families divided. Individuals left hurting and lost – when instead we could be celebrating.

At Paper Mountain, our aim is to always support the creative development of our artists. Diversity and equality are core principles.

It drives the most compelling conversations about arts and culture, inspiring an atmosphere of real creativity and makes us a stronger community for it.

So, the answer is obvious – vote yes. Please vote yes.

Yes, so all couples who wish to express their love through marriage can do so.

Yes, so everyone has the same basic and fundamental rights they deserve – whether in being united in marriage, or being the next of kin for when times get tough.

Voting yes does not take away anything from anyone else. It pushes as towards a more inclusive, fair and equitable society. Striving for equality will always build a more connected community.

For as much hurt that is happening right now, I have seen far, far more love. I have seen the blessings of honest empathy and care. I have seen people open themselves up to saying “You’re not alone”, because we are in this together.

By voting yes, you will mark your place in Australian history, because we will make history with this win. And when we win, myself and the team at Paper Mountain will dance and celebrate as we always do as a creative community.

Johnny Doan
General Manager