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Actors paid to ‘act gay’ in Sydney Mardi Gras

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  1. I wonder if it’s anything to do with the fact that you can’t explicitly say – due to equality laws – ‘gay dancers only’.

    So long as all those involved are making the Carnaval a fun event and are in this to show support for LGBT people, that’s all that matters. But they shouldn’t be paying people to take part in the first place. It’s an honour and a privilege to take part, not a job.

  2. Christine Rourke 19 Feb 2010, 12:03pm

    ““a sense of fun”, “the ability to act like you have water in a hot tub when you don’t” and “the ability to be adored”. ”

    So THAT’S what being Gay is all about..!!
    Why did nobody tell me this before?

    Confused Chrissie

  3. This is a ridiculous article. The quoted e-mail doesn’t say anything about “acting gay”, as the article claims in its headline and first paragraph.

    And I think AdrianT (1) is being disingenuous to say “[…] you can’t explicitly say – due to equality laws – ‘gay dancers only'”

    Equality isn’t about appearances, and doesn’t only work one-way. If Ikea had discriminated against non-gay people, it would be morally wrong as well as illegal.

    My company serves the gay market, and I’d be more than delighted if all the employees were gay. But as it turns out, none of them are. Prejudice is wrong, whoever it’s aimed at!

  4. Doesn’t hiring people to ‘act gay’ promote to those that thing we are different, not just another people walking on the street? So much for getting away from stereotypes.

  5. Squidgy (4): read the article… it’s Pink News that’s talking about acting gay – not Ikea. The quote says Ikea asked for “the ability to act like you have water in a hot tub when you don’t”

  6. Sister Mary clarence 19 Feb 2010, 1:39pm

    Perhaps they should be grateful that Ikea considered the event so important that it was prepared to put up cash to supplement its volunteers on the float. It does seem to emphasis that it viewed it as an important piece of PR.

    Would they have had such an issue it gay dancers had been hired. I’m sure there are ‘gay’ paid staff fulfilling other roles on the day.

  7. Ryan Haynes 19 Feb 2010, 1:39pm

    This is not unusual. I know a few people in Germany who worked for promotions companies when they were starting out in work and were regularly drafted in to gay and mardi gras parades. It simply shows that being gay is about being part of a market – we’re consumers and we have a particular way of consuming.

    Remember for many mainstream gays, especially those over 40 years old the option of children, marriage, gay rights was never an option in their youth – and today they are the ones with the highest amount of disposable income.

    So in all – it makes sense to turn gay parades into a commercial enterprise – after all, being gay isn’t a culture – it’s not even a way of life – it’s just a sexuality. So we shouldn’t get all het up about it!

  8. It’s interesting that the same dissatisfaction is emerging in LGBT communities all around the world.

  9. tsuchan – yes I know, Thank you!

  10. For you info, I Don’t leave comments on stories I haven’t read, not really sure what you point is, mine was on the headline.

  11. Squidgy (9 and 10): My point was that the headline was a fiction made by Pink News which doesn’t reflect the reality even as expressed in the article beneath it. And you commented as if relating it to something which actually happened.

  12. Why didn’t IKEA hold a competition for its workers in countries other than Australia, with the opportunity to appear on the float as a prize?

  13. Elizabeth Montague-Cholmondley 20 Feb 2010, 2:48pm

    I wonder what those paid guys actually DID on the night to project the impression that they were gay!

    Imagine half a dozen straight actors. Actors are always competitive. And if they were straight there may well have been some embarrassment amongst them. I wouldn’t be surprised if they went over the top with their “gay” behaviour – projecting the usual stereotypes of gay men.

    Interesting that IKEA doesn’t appear to have advertised for lady gays!

    Tut Tut!

  14. Sister Mary clarence 21 Feb 2010, 1:49pm

    Why Elizabeth? Its probably just as likely they had laugh and a fantastic day out.

  15. Elizabeth Montague-Cholmondley 21 Feb 2010, 2:11pm

    Mary, dear, you clearly have no long experience in the world of theatre, actors, and luvvies! You seem to think these hired actors behaved like good little altar-boys – the sort, at least, uncorrupted by ordained ministers of religions!

  16. Well it’s obvious from the photo that they got Hugo Weaving to mince about at the Mardis Gras. He’s straight, and married with kids!

  17. Personally I’m quite happy to have straight people in the pride parade as long as they’re not deliberately passing themselves off as gay or being paid to “camp it up”.
    Otherwise it would be like inviting the Black and White minstrels to the Notting Hill Carnival!

  18. Ehhh what about paid ‘cheerleaders’?

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