Sydney’s Mardi Gras Jewish contingent

March 5, 2017 by J-Wire Staff
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Over 60 people danced up Sydney’s Oxford St. with a rainbow flag to choreography created by Kathy Baykitch and music which ranged from the Pesach song, “Dayenu” through Frank Sinatra’s “Love and Marriage” to gay anthem, “ Free, Gay & Happy”.

Enjoying Mardi Gras Photo: Toby Evan

Marchers included members of Dayenu, with their friends and family as well as folk from both Habonim and Netzer youth group. President of Dayenu, Alex Linker said, the float was fantastic! It was great to see the support of the youth groups who came to march with us! Everyone had a fantastic night and I can’t wait for next year.”

Netzer leaders preparing to march in this year’s Dayenu float

The intermittent drizzle did nothing to diminish the electric energy  of the night. “It was wonderful to feel the welcoming vibe throughout the parade”, said Kim Gotlieb, Secretary of Dayenu and organiser of this year’s float. He also added that it remains important  to maintain a Jewish presence in  the GLBTI community, as well as keeping the conversation alive in the various streams of Judaism. Kim was featured on the float wearing a dazzling gold sequinned outfit, which was previewed at the Mardi Gras Shabbat service and dinner at Emanuel synagogue in Woollahra.

Tiernan Brady, Executive Director of Australians for Equality was one of the speakers at the dinner, together with Justin Koonin, President of the Aids Council of NSW ( ACON) and a member of Emanuel Synagogue. Justin’s speech included reflections on the impact of a visit to Auschwitz. Tiernan, an Irish Catholic spoke of the importance of ongoing dialogue which encourage movement through acceptance, rather than criticising opposing views.

On the float was twelve year-old supporter Mia Richter-Weinstein  who said, “It was really great, and everybody rocked it”.

Mardi Gras is a time where politics in pushed aside and everyone just want to party and have fun.

Dayenu, Sydney’s GLBTI Group added their own special flair to this year’s parade.

The Dayenu float Photo: Toby Evans

Choreographer Kathy Baykitch with Mia Richter-Weinstein



8 Responses to “Sydney’s Mardi Gras Jewish contingent”
  1. Roy Freeman says:

    Another example of child sexual abuse within the Orthodox community. Maybe Ingram would like to comment on this:

  2. Roy Freeman says:

    Regarding Rabbi Ingram’s comments, I advise him that people in glass houses should not throw stones. The results of the recent Royal Inquiry into child abuse have shown us who is more likely to be abusing children.

  3. Rabbi Chaim Ingram says:

    Child abusers sexualise children for their own pleasure. Those who encouraged these twelve-year-olds to dispay themesleves like this in a homosexual parade are likewise guilty of abusively sexualising these innocents and seducing these children into affirming their own abnormal sexual preferences

    • Michael Barnett says:

      It is a sign of ignorance and ill education when people call child participation in the Mardi Gras parade child sexual abuse. Similarly calling homosexual and transgender people “abnormal” demonstrates a limited and lacking understanding of human sexuality in these individuals.

      There is a litany of proven child sexual abuse from within the Orthodox and Ultra-Orthodox Jewish community in Sydney, Melbourne, Israel, New York and London, just for starters. By making scurrilous and spurious claims of child sexual abuse here minimises the harm inflicted on the genuine victims and survivors of child sexual abuse.

      There is zero evidence that child participation in Mardi Gras and other LGBTIQ parades is the slightest bit damaging or even remotely close to child sexual abuse. Quite the contrary, they celebrate the wonderful diversity of human sexuality and gender identity. They also help reduce the rates of suicide, self-harm and mental health issue that are frequently exacerbated by the very intolerance that these accusations of child sexual abuse feed.

  4. Rabbi Chaim Ingram says:

    So now children as young as twelve are being encouraged to take leading roles in this shameless display of debauched decadence.

    This too is a form of child sexual abuse. Yet everyone is silent!

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