Sunday, March 07, 2004


A Sydney (Australia) reader writes:

The annual Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras was held last night despite a day and night of heavy and sometime torrential rain. Yet again the organisers are claiming 355,000 spectators braved the weather to view the festivities. They were "disappointed" that the "usual number" of 600,000 to 700,000 spectators couldn't make it.

The promoters of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras regularly claim in excess of 700,000 plus spectators ... presumably lining the footpath along the Oxford Street parade route. Yet the Sydney City to Surf fun run regularly attracts about 60,000 officially counted runners. Anyone who has seen a "City to Surf" crowd knows that that number could not be contained on Oxford Street's sidewalks.

My guess, the Mardi Gras would get well under 40,000 spectators. Crowd researchers, after analysing photos, say that both police and organisers usually exaggerate crowd or demonstration sizes. Both groups have an incentive to do so.

As reported recently from the UK, following census figures that found the number of self reporting gay couples over 700 times less than figures asserted by gay activists, there is a political motivation at work to exaggerate the numbers of homosexuals in the community. As "Spiked's" Jennie Bristow points out, the number of gays in long term relationships has been massively inflated, presumably to give weight to the 'gay marriage' push.

What's interesting about this is not the exaggerated claims of the gay lobbyists (all lobbyists tell fibs) but the willingness of mainstream media and opinion makers to put up with this absurd arithmetic. This shows that there is a political agenda at work here that extends well beyond gays and in the end probably has little to do with that high profile minority. My guess is that this is another symptom of an issue highlighted by American political scientist Paul Gottfried. He argues that "multiculturalism" has very little to do with immigrants. But it has everything to do with the new class of "post-socialist" leftist bureaucrats, lawyers and academics: As the old socialist dream of economic control has evaporated, these "born again" interventionists seek new frontiers for their class power in regulating personal behaviour. For example, in Australia polls show only 3% of immigrants consider racism a problem. Yet when you listen to the views of our "post-socialist" left you would think racism and it's related isms are the major problems facing minority groups today, as distinct from "mainstream" issues like jobs, taxes, health care etc.

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