Talk:Wikinews interviews Zahra Stardust about the upcoming by-election in the Bradfield electorate of the Australian parliament

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The interview is from the following email exchange (sent to scoop)

Hi Patrick

Please find below my responses to your questions.

Kind regards,


Qs 1 & 2

I am delighted and thrilled I am to be representing the Australian Sex Party, whose policies on
sex, gender, human rights and equality are very close to my heart. We believe that the personal is 
political, and we’re serious about sex and the way that it directly affects individuals in areas 
of health, censorship, discrimination, workplace, education and equality.

Rarely do we hear politicians speaking in positive or open-minded terms about issues relating to 
sex, sexuality and gender. Much rhetoric in Australian politics in fact uses particularly 
moralising or religious discourses that are governed by heteronormative, patriarchal and hegemonic 
ideals. Indeed, our party needed an electoral commission ruling that it s' name was not ‘obscene’. 
In this climate, we aim to disrupt, expose and eliminate the plethora of taboos and stigmas, shame 
and isolation around sex, sexuality, and gender, to advocate for wider equality and freedom from 
harm for all Australians.

Q 3 & 4

We’re proud to announce that the Australian Sex Party has policies in a diverse number of areas. 
We are concerned about child protection and education- we would like to convene a Royal Commission 
into child sex abuse in religious institutions, and assist develop global approaches to child 
pornography, whilst importantly, establishing a national sex education curriculum for children, an 
internet education scheme for parents, a uniform classification scheme for non-violent erotica, 
introducing R and X ratings for computer games, and return Internet censorship to parents and 

One of our fundamental concerns is equality – including paid maternity leave, ensuring equal 
numbers of women in Parliament, legalisation of abortion, enacting more comprehensive federal 
anti-discrimination laws in line with the Australian Human Rights Commission recommendations, 
creating total equal rights in all areas of the law for gay, lesbian and transgender people, 
overturning discriminatory laws in the Northern Territory banning Indigenous people from 
possessing erotic media, and ensuring the sexual rights of the elderly and people with a 

Q5 - 11

As a party in its infancy who is not yet in the House of Representatives, we are focusing 
predominantly on niche issues relating to sex and gender, in which we have expertise. We look 
forward to formulating policies on wider issues in the public discourse such climate change, the 
economy and  refugee issues if and when the occassion arises. Currently we are seeking to raise 
awareness of important topics that are remain hidden or absent from the public political agenda.

However, we would make the following comments in response to your questions. For a country that 
prides itself on multiculturalism, we believe that instead of utilizing law and order rhetoric 
that stigmatises people who have every right under international law to seek asylum, we should see 
this instance as an opportunity to  welcome the incredible cultural diversity asylum seekers can 
bring to our country, and to open up discussion about the root causes of refugee and immigration 
movements, such as climate change, civil war, famine and persecution. Despite being elected 
largely because of their compassion and empathy towards refugees and asylum seekers, Rudd's 'hard 
line' approach is reminiscent of John Howard's stance in this area and risks creating a 
disillusioned public. We urge the Rudd Government to call on Indonesia to sign and ratify the 
Refugee Convention if it continues to fund detention centres there, and press for asylum seekers 
to be processed on the mainland with view to Australia being a progressive role model in the 
international community, as opposed to maintaining its current detention policies which continue 
to seek attention from human rights bodies worldwide.


There is a lot of lip service paid currently paid by the major political parties to gender 
equality that is not followed through with substantive policy and law reform. We know that the 
vast numbers of Australians are tolerant, respectful, celebratory people, with their individual 
backgrounds, preferences and lives, and we hope to seek resonance with people in Bradfield 
electorate who care about social justice issues and injustices in areas of health, education, 
censorship, workplace relations and child protection. We hope to represent people in Bradfield who 
support the human rights, respect, dignity and equality of all people, no matter what gender, 
sexual preference, race, class, ability, or any other factor. 

I have experience working with the United Nations Population Fund in Eritrea on sexual and 
reproductive health programs, with UNIFEM Australia on gender, development and discrimination, and 
with the Kimberley Land Council in the area of Native Title. I have worked at Wirringa Baiya 
Aboriginal Women’s Legal Centre with victims of sexual assault and domestic violence and 
campaigned with Amnesty International, Mahboba’s Promise and Oxfam Australia. I am a proud member 
of the Gay/Lesbian/Bi-sexual/ TIQ community and believe in equal rights for all members of the 

We urge people to look at our website, which is absolutely overflowing with fabulous information, 
news articles, media releases, and videos from around the globe. We look forward to meeting with, 
hearing from and working with members of the Bradfield electorate about their experiences, desires 
and priorities in these areas and how we can best help make real political and social change, and 
provide nuanced representation for a beautifully diverse electorate.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: <>
Date: Fri, Oct 30, 2009 at 11:15 PM
Subject: RE: [Press] Interview Request
To: Miss Zahra Stardust <>

Hi Zahra

I don't really have an "official" deadline as such - just as soon as possible.

The questions are as follows;

   1. Why do you want to get into parliament?
   2. Why do you represent your party?
   3. What would the three main policies you are taking into this by-election be?
   4. How would you address these policies?
   5. Sending asylum seekers to Indonesia: good or bad?
   6. Is the Australian dollar's near parrity with the UD dollar a sign that the Australian 
      economy is healthy, the US economy in chaos or both?
   7. How do you rate the governments economic stimulus package?
   8. Should it be wound back?
   9. Is Kevin Rudd a better Prime Minister than John Howard?
  10. Is the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme an effective sollution to climate change? Why?
  11. Is there a better sollution?
  12. Why should the electorate vote for you?

Thanks again
Patrick Gillett
Independent Reporter for Wikinews

    -------- Original Message --------
    Subject: Re: [Press] Interview Request
    From: Miss Zahra Stardust <>
    Date: Fri, October 30, 2009 9:52 pm

    Hi Patrick

    Not a problem to interview via email.

    Please feel free to send through some questions and a deadline.

    Kind regards,


    On Fri, Oct 30, 2009 at 2:24 PM, <> wrote:

        Hi Zahra

        I am unable to do this interview over the phone due to some technical issues. Is it 
        possible to do it through email or maybe google talk?

        Patrick Gillett
        Independent Reporter for Wikinews

            -------- Original Message --------
            Subject: Re: [Press] Interview Request
            From: Fiona Patten <>
            Date: Fri, October 30, 2009 7:43 am

            Hi Patrick
            Zahra Stardust AKA Marianna Leishmann
            0409 226 576

            We some information about her on our website and if need anything else you can call me 
            on 0413 734 613


            On 29/10/2009, at 9:08 PM, wrote:

>             My name is Patrick Gillett. I'm a freelance journalist writing on Wikinews 
>             I would like to request an interview with your candidate in the Bradfield 
              by-election, Zahra Stardust (aka Marianna Leishman).
>             If an interview is possible, it would be greatly appreciated
>             ---
>             Patrick Gillett
>             Independent Reporter for Wikinews

    ...Miss Zahra Stardust...

    * pole * trapeze * burlesque * fire * modelling *

...Miss Zahra Stardust...

* pole * trapeze * burlesque * fire * modelling *

...Miss Zahra Stardust...

* pole * trapeze * burlesque * fire * modelling *

--RockerballAustralia (talk) 00:41, 31 October 2009 (UTC)

Review of revision 905937 [Passed][edit]


{{editprotected}}  occassion .....--Billymac00 (talk) 23:38, 13 September 2014 (UTC)