From the event description:
The protest starts at 1.30pm on Sunday, July 13 and will be held on the steps of Parliament House, Spring Street. Student groups have organised the speakers, who so far include 2008 Australian Humanist of the Year and former Senator Lyn Allison, Rationalist Society of Australia President Ian Robinson, Secular Party of Australia President John Perkins and Humanist Society President Stephen Stuart.
New laws recently passed in NSW give police and emergency service workers the power to hand out fines of up to $5000 to anyone “causing an annoyance or inconvenience” to World Youth Day pilgrims. “We want to show our support to Sydney protestors whose civil liberties have been trampled by the NSW government,” stated Jason Ball, President of the University of Melbourne Secular Society and event spokesperson. “This is a blatant attack on the right to freedom of speech.”
The politics of the Pope have been criticised by both religious and non-religious groups, most notably for his stance against condoms in AIDS ridden Africa and statement that homosexuality is an “intrinsic moral evil”. Ball stated; “such ignorance is inflicting serious harm, contributing to the spread of death and misery throughout the world”.
In an attempt to raise AIDS awareness at the protest, volunteers will be handing out condoms and collecting donations for the Victorian AIDS Council. They will also be wearing t-shirts and holding banners that openly critisise the Pope’s views, a freedom now wholly exclusive to citizens in states outside of NSW.
That’s the day after my birthday. I may well have to attend and take some happy snaps to share with you all, hangover permitting!