Steve Harris: What you can do this week to help get a YES outcome for Marriage Equality

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The looming Marriage Equality plebiscite is provoking widespread community debate. Steve Harris, CEO of The Brand Agency, is firmly in favour of the proposal and says Father's Day this Sunday provides an opportunity for like-minded people to promote a Yes vote.  

People working in the wider communications industry appear to be strongly behind saying YES in the forthcoming Marriage Equality postal survey. It's probably what you might expect given that we are largely made up of younger, more liberal thinking people who have grown up with the concept of all individuals being equal, and having a strong disdain for prejudice.
 
So many people I speak with are such strong supporters of Marriage Equality that I'm starting to get the impression that everyone except Tony Abbott will be saying YES. 
 
But there's a danger in our thinking, and our actions.
The danger is that we are all talking to like-minded people and we aren't having contact with the vast middle ground of people who are either undecided or disinterested.
 
Rest assured that if you're talking to another strong YES person then you're not doing anything substantive to help the YES cause or helping to deliver a successful and decisive YES outcome. 
 
You're really just talking with yourself. We saw the dangers of this with the Brexit vote last year.
 
If you're serious about supporting Marriage Equality and getting to a YES outcome then you need to be spending time talking with people who are undecided or disinterested. 
 
It can be a simple conversation. The most powerful thing is for you to share your thinking and the reasons why Marriage Equality is important to you.
 
Some of those undecided people whom you know best will most likely be your parents.
 
So if you want to do something significant for the YES campaign this week, then speak to your parents and your parents' friends.
 
And when you talk with your father this Father's Day make sure you tell him about why you want to live in an Australia where everyone has the same legal rights; an Australia with Marriage Equality.
 
The postal survey won't be mailed out until 12th September, but this Sunday it's time to bring out your dad.
 
Steve Harris is the CEO of The Brand Agency

11 Comments

Dan Hatch said:

Good onya Steve. Fight the good fight.

You Know What said:

It's okay to say "no" too!

Say No to No said:

Hey ‘You know what’,

Is it though? You think inequality is ok?

Please, enlighten us with your rational explanation. Seriously, can you formulate a solid argument against equality without talking about an imaginary man in the sky, or the book some misogynists wrote about him?

Own your opinion and back it up with logic, or STFU.

Also, Steve Harris, you’re an unexpected champion of equality, but the champion we need right now. Good on you for taking a stand, I wish more industry leaders were as forthcoming.

Rolls eyes said:

Yep, I'm sure that's exactly what dad wants on his special day, a political debate manipulating him into voting your way. Happy Father's Day Dad, lets make it all about me and what I want!

Yes I believe everyone should be able to get married to the one they love

Adam Barker said:

Well done for making some noise on this Steve. Hopefully you’ve made a few people in our industry think about the great opportunity we all have this Sunday. Nobody wants Father’s Day to turn into a battle ground and it doesn’t have to. We all just need to be respectful and avoid unreasonable conflation… unlike what we saw the ‘No’ tv ad this week.

Angry said:

@ 1:47

‘STFU’??? Now that there illustrates the reason I’m voting NO. I won’t be pressured by gay activism. I’m sick of being vilified for my views. Ring a bells does it?

I really don’t care if you’re LBGTI, white, black, yellow, Muslim, Jew or Christian. I’ll judge people only on their character and the character shown by the LBGTI community and their supporters on this subject is appalling. I have to earn respect so why shouldn’t you? To vilify and insult others for their views is unconscionable. And no, I don’t have to explain my position on gay marriage to you or anyone. My vote is NO. Respect it, as I do yours.

I wish I could put my name to this post, I really do. But in this country, in this town and at this time, I’d be kissing my career goodbye. Now that’s a nation to behold isn’t it? Proud of yourselves?

Now put some energy into some real issues.

Come on, fire back with some of that vitriol we've come to associate with your cause.

Andrew Doyle said:

I think it's really important to remember is to be respectful to those who don't share your view, too.

Too often "share your thinking" means imposing your thoughts on other.

When we immediately blast "No" sayers as bigots or call them out for hate speech, we alienate them from public discussion and when you do that, you're never going to change their vote.

It's like how Trump supporters in the US didn't dare to show their preference during the elections for fear of being publicly shamed. It seemed like no one was actually going to vote for Trump, but they did (you can blame the electoral college all you want, but Trump had the biggest support over a wider range of demographics which is important in such a large and diverse country).

More importantly, make sure you actually vote. That will do more than updating a Facebook cover photo or a profile photo filter.

To Adam said:

Come on Adam. What's unreasonable about the no ad. There you lot go again. Labelling that commercial as hate speech. They are legitimate concerns from the general public.

OK, what about Prof Gary Dowsett, one of the authors of the safe schools program, saying that intergenerational sex (pedophilia) should be recognised in this country. This is absolutely abhorrent. Where does it all stop?

You have to admit that the LBGTI community haven't got their act together on this issue. Until we see them standing up for the protection of children, you won't find the majority of Australians supporting them. Then again ...

Scary times.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3494915/George-Christensen-labels-academic-Gary-Dowsett-pedophilia-advocate-controversial-Safe-Schools-anti-bullying-program.html

Josh said:

Oh Angry, you'll just never get it.

"I have to earn respect so why shouldn’t you?"

Really? You had to prove your worthiness to inherit the right to marry? You had to 'earn respect' to be able to go to school or wait at the bus stop without copping abuse?

You did nothing of the sort. You were born with these rights, and you can't see past your own nose to understand why others would be upset that they don't currently have them. Grow up.

rob mitchell said:

Send a text LOL

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