Barnett to be married at public expense

Apparently I’m getting married on TV and at tax-payer expense. 😉


Photographer, blogger, popular Melbourne gay identity and significant Qmelb contributor, Michael Barnett, is to be featured in a mass gay wedding with his handsome partner. The wedding (and what has been advertised as a stag night / hens night) will be hosted on Australia’s national television network’s by comedian Adam Hills over the next two Wednesday evenings. This will clash with Melbourne’s Queer Film Festival. The wedding will be paid for by Australian taxpayers, a service the ABC has never offered to straight couples. At this stage it is not known whether the ABC or Barnett will be releasing a video of the post wedding celebrations.

Michael Glover
East Melbourne

(The Gordon St Mass Same-Sex TV Wedding Extravaganza is just around the corner! This inaugural event will happen on March 26 and airs Wednesday March 28 at 8:30pm.)

The Wedding Dance Film

THE WEDDING DANCE is a 3 minute film about Equality in a different perspective


My name is Elliot London…  My passion is making gay cinema…

Today is Valentines Day and I have been working on a beautiful short film (THE WEDDING DANCE) about Equality in a different perspective. I would be so ever grateful if you would take a look at this 3 minute film and consider posting it on this special day where loving one another is important.

The objective with this project is to raise money for our feature film FRIEND. A film about coming out in 2012. A time now when things are so different with social networking. A time now that a child might not have the correct tools to coupe with humiliation in an instant world.
FRIEND is about giving back. Its a movie about accepting and loving oneself but most of all it is about educating. With the proceeds from this film I am going to be donating the profits to groups that help educate at risk youth… If we can raise $10,000 to make our last film with social networking. Than $250,000 can be done. Please take a look at the campaign we have started. Please share this film…

Thank You
Elliot London


Sound Track to THE WEDDING DANCE is available for .99 on iTunes and we are putting all the funds from the iTunes sales towards the feature film.

Pride March 2012 and Habo joins the ranks

Pride March 2012 – a wonderfully diverse snapshot of a vibrant community and it’s allies

Sunday Feb 5 2012 saw the 17th Victorian Pride March.  The weather forecast was 33 degrees C, windy and thunderstorms.  I guess that’s Melbourne for you.

There were close on 120 entrants in the parade (that’s organisations, not people), which is a remarkable effort.  Check out the march order for the who’s who.

I was again running the Aleph Melbourne entry, ably assisted by Mike and Doobie.  Through the powers of social networking and the Internet we pulled together a pleasingly sized group of guys and girls of all ages to fly the flags and show their queer pride and cultural heritage.

Joining the team this year was a straight ally, Dr Mark Cherny.  I was especially pleased Mark came on board as he is trying hard to break down the barriers and isolation for same-sex attracted people in the Jewish community.

One of the highlights for me at Pride March this year was seeing Habonim Dror (or just “Habo”) enter a contingent.  Habo is a mainstream Jewish youth organisation with a strong social justice conscience.  When I was in New York watching the pride parade there in 2007 I was overwhelmed seeing Habo flying a massive flag and fielding a strong presence.  At first I couldn’t believe my eyes, but gradually my disbelief was replaced by exhilaration, and an ear to ear grin.  Wow.

And the Habo Wow has continued over the last few years here in Melbourne, with increasing numbers of Habo members joining the Equal Love Marriage Equality rallies in Melbourne.  These young adults are amongst the best role models I have seen in ages.  Most are not queer, but they are passionately supportive of queer equality and are prepared to stand up and show their support.

And on a windy Melbourne day in Fitzroy Street, a large group of Habo members turned up, in uniform, accompanied by placards of support and made a strong statement in support for queer equality.  Thank you.

I look forward to the 2013 Pride March and the return of Habo, and Mark, and Mike (and his two Poochons) and Doobie and the rest of the great team, and hopefully many other supportive Jewish (youth) organisations, from a community that is learning gradually that it’s better to include than exclude.

P.S.  I’ve posted my photos from the day on Google Albums and Facebook.  You can see my photos and blogs from previous pride marches here.

Merv Barnett on Aleph Melbourne’s exclusion from the JCCV

Cartoon by Merv Barnett depicting the lack of GLBT representation in the JCCV’s community umbrella.

My father Merv Barnett penned this cartoon in June 2008 in response to a JCCV advertisement in the Australian Jewish News showing the dozens of organisations represented by the JCCV.  Glaringly absent from the tree of community organisations was Aleph Melbourne, or any other organisation representing the interests of GLBT Jews.  Needless to say this is still the case.  Hopefully 2012 will bring a more positive outlook toward GLBT Jews from the JCCV’s leadership.

20080621 Aleph Melbourne beyond the JCCV fence - Merv Barnett
Aleph Melbourne beyond the JCCV fence - Merv Barnett - 21 June 2008

Christmas Day 2011

Yesterday was Christmas Day.  For me it is the culmination of an annoying time of the year when I avoid shopping centres and am surrounded by a peculiar sense of cheer that is predominantly about gift-giving, family coming together and consuming food and wine.  It doesn’t seem to me to be a time that most care to reflect on what it is they’re actually celebrating.  Not that most these days would want to.

It’s not a time of the year that evokes any fond childhood memories in me, and in fact aside from the pleasure gained from having learnt some of the more traditional Christmas carols at the state primary school I attended, Christmas then was actually a time of the year that made me feel awkward.  This was because I had to tell those students at school who got all sorts of fabulous gifts for their Christmas that I didn’t get presents from Santa because my family didn’t celebrate Christmas, a completely incomprehensible concept for them.

I saw my first white Christmas yesterday, not that it mattered an iota to me, although it was unusual for an Australian summer.  There was a violent hail-storm over much of Melbourne mid-afternoon.  It was stormy all day, and in fact from first thing, before I got up to go to the gym at 7:30am there had been rolling thunder looming.  I quite enjoyed the tempest, but I was concerned that my car might have been damaged by the hail.  Fortunately mine escaped unscathed, unlike others that I saw had holes through their windscreen in very telling fashion.

Annoyingly, I found my driver side window had been down and a lot of water had come into my car during the storm, which is really weird because generally I don’t leave my windows down when the car is unattended.  Today I’m trying to dry out the car’s interior.

What I did enjoy about yesterday was the quality time my partner Gregory and his children spent with their mother Jennie, giving and opening presents in the morning, and then at lunch with Gregory’s sister Angela and her family.  It’s been a lovely tradition that I’ve shared in over the past four Christmases.

I had to laugh though, earlier in the day, as I went to collect a cake for a Chanukah party this afternoon that I’m helping organise.  I went to Danish Nosh, in Glenhuntly Road, South Caulfield.  It’s a cake shop that sells traditional Jewish / Eastern European cakes and delicacies to a predominantly Jewish / Eastern European clientele.  Disappointingly, the shop was closed today but it was open yesterday on Christmas Day, so I went yesterday.  As I walked in I was greeted with the sound of Christmas Carols on the sound system.  After paying for my pear and cinnamon cake the delightful assistant of Asian background wished me a merry Christmas.  I suspect the irony of her actions escaped her.  It made me chuckle, and made my Christmas Day.

Danny Lamm – Philanthropist

Danny Lamm is the major donor of the Jewish Library of Australia. I would never have thought homophobia and philanthropy went hand-in-hand too often.


I read with mild amusement that the Jewish community’s Danny Lamm has bought himself a shiny new library.  Wonderful.

A library is a place of learning.  A home to a collection of accumulated experience, wisdom, joy, suffering, marvel, art, history, mistakes, optimism and other expressions of the human condition.

It is strikes me as unusual that someone who wanted to exclude a support organisation for gay men from the Jewish community should become a philanthropist and major financial benefactor of a library.  But despite that blot on his good name I think I’ll let Wikipedia(*) have the last say on the matter of philanthropist Danny Lamm:

Some believe that philanthropy can be a means to build community by growing community funds and giving vehicles. When communities see themselves as being resource rich instead of asset poor, the community is in a better position to solve community problems.

However, some believe the purpose of philanthropy is often tribute and self-aggrandizement, as arguably shown by the prevalence of self-titled foundations, rarity of large anonymous donations, and lack of support for unpalatable causes such as the treatment of diarrhea (which despite being easily treatable is the second leading cause of infant death worldwide.)

  • as referenced on July 14 2011.

Jewish Broadcasting for the Community (JBC) calls for members

The new organisation Jewish Broadcasting for the Community (JBC) is now calling for members. Have your say in the direction of broadcasting in the Australian Jewish community.

From: Yoram Regev <yoram dot regev at gmail dot com>
Date: 28 June 2011 19:35
Subject: JBC: Constitution and Membership Form
To: …, Paul Gardner <pgardner at bigpond dot net dot au>, …

Dear all,

Attached please find the revised JBC constitution and a membership application form.
Please forward the form to as many as you can so our membership starts to pick up. There is also a Friend category which is for supporters who are not members.
Should you have any questions please send them to either myself or Paul Gardner, our interim Chairman.
All application forms should be sent to me on this address (which appears on the form).

Thanks and regards,

Yoram Regev
JBC Interim Board member

Men on Men Art Competition 2011 at the Laird Hotel

Come take a look at the 2011 Men on Men Art Competition at the Laird Hotel in Abbotsford. A wide range of excellent art on display, including a piece by me. Running June 8-29, women welcome June 11 2-5pm (men only otherwise).

This year’s “Men on Men” Art Competition at the Laird Hotel in Melbourne is well worth the visit.  You’ll find a really wide range of art styles and techniques on display, and an equally diverse range of masculinity being portrayed.  There’s definitely an abundance of talent on offer.

I was particularly taken by the larger-than-life scruffy lad overlooking the pool table (and a veritable steal for only $600).  Oh, and there’s an extremely clever entry that takes you on quite a journey around Melbourne’s metropolitan rail network (the ticket for this will cost you $450).  No guarantees you’ll still have your virginity after you’ve gone that route.

My entry into the competition this year is of a very handsome, somewhat scruffy, bearish guy.  You’ll find him well hung in the games room, over the pinball machines.  If you can’t get there, stay tuned and I’ll post my entry here after the competition closes.

Men on Men Art Competition 2011
Men on Men Art Competition 2011

Come take a look at the art, on display until June 29 at the Laird Hotel, 149 Gipps Street Abbotsford.  (Note, the Laird is generally a men-only venue, but gladly welcomes women to view the exhibition from 2-5pm on Saturday June 11.)