Queer politics in queer times: Queer Wars
We are living in very queer times in Australia. Queer politics is a consistent feature in our newspapers and on our television screens. The demonisation of Safe Schools, calls from the Family Court’s Chief Justice Diana Bryant to change the laws regarding special medical procedures for transgender children, and the queer issue par excellence of the day — same sex marriage and the plebiscite. It seems that, today, everyone from politicians to the person in the corner store has an opinion on queer rights.
Despite this, global queer politics rarely rates a mention in Australian politics. Whether it’s the brutal attacks on prominent queers in Bangladesh, the clampdown on queer rights in Indonesia or the degrading rhetoric and actions of the Islamic State towards queers in Syria and Iraq, 2016 has been a big year for queer politics. This can be contrasted with the ‘gay rights as human rights’ rhetoric which is seemingly gaining momentum in parts of the world, and greater awareness and attention of queer rights by international organisations and bodies.