Last night’s Gloria awards in Sydney commemorated the most outrageous, ridiculous and ignorant comments about gay and lesbian people made in the last year.
Australia’s same-sex marriage debate provided plenty of fodder for nominations but the winner of the Golden Gloria was controversial right-wing columnist Miranda Devine for linking lesbian parenting to the London riots.
In the Politics/Law category Canberra election candidate Philip Pocock was awarded for his comments advocating the recriminalization of gay sex and for discrimination against gay people ‘in terms of employment, accommodation etc as they do in dealing with drug addicts etc’.
The worst international comment of the year was awarded to Charles L. Worley of Providence Road Baptist Church in North Carolina who suggested gays and lesbians should be penned inside an electric fence.
Another pastor, Peter Walker, won the gloria in the Religion category for telling a National Marriage Day rally outside Parliament House in Canberra that ‘homosexuals (re)produces themselves by molesting children’.
Former tennis champion turned pastor Margaret Court won the Sport category Gloria for the comments she made during the Australian Open in January this year, including ‘if you are told you are gay from a young age, soon enough it will start to impact your life and you will live it’.
The silliest comment from within the GLTBI community was awarded to gay Liberal senator Dean Smith for voting against marriage equality, saying:
‘The claim to equality ignores the widely accepted fact that marriage is an institution that has a long and well-accepted definition – a definition that is heavily laden with cultural meaning and values crafted by custom and by law over the years’.
The Glorias were conceived by lesbian New South Wales Member of the Legislative Council (MLC) Penny Sharpe and first held in 2010.
‘I hope there comes a time where we may not need to hold such an event,’ Sharpe said at the ceremony at Sydney’s Parliament House last night.