Regrettably, I couldn’t run the headline ‘Australian Icon Protests In Support Of Australian Icon‘ because it provides no information whatsoever, but your mate and ours Jimmy Barnes was among the roughly 1000 people who turned out last night to protest Racing NSW projecting the barrier draw for the Everest Cup on the sails of the Opera House.
As the Sydney Morning Herald is reporting, Barnesy told ABC Radio that he was just doing his bit:
Everything is wrong about this: Australia already has such a huge problem with gambling destroying families all over this country, and they want to put it on one of our national icons. I just don’t think it’s right, so I’m just here to protest.
Speaking to The Australian, Barnes said that he attended the protest to “yell and to have a presence here” and took a shot at PM Scott Morrison‘s support of the move:
Nearly 300,000 have signed a petition. Our government should stick up for this instead of ScoMo saying this is a good thing for the country. He has no fucking idea.
Since last night, the petition Barnes is referencing closed at over 311,000 signatures, which is not small.
Protestors used handheld torches and industrial spotlights to attempt to obscure the projection on the sails, which didn’t work entirely but was enough to quite noticeably ruin the photos of the draw being posted by Racing NSW.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian told the ABC today that she wasn’t happy with how things went, but not in a way that meant she regretted doing it. “I’m upset at the way the issue panned out publicly, but I’m equally upset at those who’ve come out now and been almost as vitriolic in expressing their views,” she said. “I encourage the input and say people protest for governments to listen — and we do that — but I also say people on all sides of the argument should be respectful.“