Last week we said a tearful farewell to our publisher and unabashed Kylie fanatic, Scott Abrahams.

Scott has led the paper for five years and he has certainly left his mark on readers and Star Observer staff alike.

The new national edition you see before you is his handiwork. His professionalism, passion for news, and drive to see the community retain its own unique voice was always very clear.

In the interim, yours truly will take up the reins as editor, a role I’m very much looking forward to.

Now, while readers may notice the Kylie-related content drop off for a little while, they can rest assured this paper’s love affair with our pop princess will never wane.

But after all,we are about diversity, so in my opinion, that should also extend to divas.

On more weighty topics, the ‘gay-hate truck’ traversing its way up north for the Queensland election this week really has been the story that keeps on giving.

There is nothing like people power and the good folk of Lismore delivered over the weekend, staging a protest against its anti-gay message.

As a journalist, I regularly interview public figures and politicians about LGBTI issues.

Often pollies are reluctant to discuss anything that remotely relates to gay sex, or they offer empty platitudes favouring gay rights (coincidentally around election times).

But there was none of this reluctance with Lismore Mayor Jenny Dowell when I interrupted her Sunday afternoon to chat about the truck parked in her
town and how residents had responded to it.

Simply, Dowell said Christian Democrat Peter Madden and his truck of hate were not welcome in town.

Lismore has one of the largest gay and lesbian communities in regional Australia, so Dowell could have been pretty confident she had the support of the local community. But this is not always the case.

There are plenty of electorates with high populations of LGBTI constituents who are ignored by their local representative when such issues arise. There is an assumption it’s far more electorally sound to stick your head in the sand than go out on a limb on gay issues.

Dowell is a perfect example of how important straight allies can say enough is enough and, from what I can see, her stance has not done her popularity any harm.

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