The people’s will prevails
The Governor-General, Sir Peter Cosgrove, this morning signed the Same-sex Marriage Bill into law. The first wedding can take place as early as January 9, 2018.
The Bill passed through the Lower House just after 6 last night when the vast majority of MPs voted yes for change, with only four recording a vote against. Some 14 members were absent from the chamber, including Bob Katter, Tony Abbott, Scott Morrison and George Christiansen. In all, 118 MPs spoke during the debate as repeated attempts to amend the bill were voted down.
I’ve personally delivered the marriage bill to the Governor-General. Same sex marriage will be the law of the land at midnight! pic.twitter.com/q8XTbqXjkF
— Malcolm Turnbull (@TurnbullMalcolm) December 7, 2017
Social media reaction has been swift and widespread. For more tweets, see the end of this report.
West Bank in revolt
Palestinians have protested in the streets across the occupied West Bank, where Israeli security forces fired tear gas to disperse crowds, and Palestine after US president Donald Trump recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Leaders across the region have expressed outrage at the decision, with President Mahmoud Abbas of Palestine declaring “These deplorable and unacceptable measures deliberately undermine all peace efforts.”
I have determined that it is time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. I am also directing the State Department to begin preparation to move the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem… pic.twitter.com/YwgWmT0O8m
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 6, 2017
If only we’d bought-in early…
Bitcoin has soared in price over the past few days to take the increase in value to 750 per cent for the year. Each bitcoin is now priced at a staggering $A22,000. A few businesses accept the volatile cryptocurrency but most are skeptical, as are the world’s superpowers. Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has expressed concern that the online platform is the perfect place for tax evasion and money laundering, while China has blocked trading in Bitcoin, fearing it could lead to a crash of world financial markets.
California wildfires raging
California has experienced its worst bushfire year as wildfires tore through millions of parched hectares of forest and scrub. Thousands of homes and business have been destroyed in the past week in Southern California, near Los Angeles, only two months after fires burned through the state’s north.
On Wednesday night, a warning of “extreme fire danger” was issued to all of Los Angeles County. Thousands of residents have now evacuated including celebrities Rupert Murdoch, Chrissy Teigen, John Legend, Ariana Grande and Paris Hilton
we are fine and we will be fine. thinking of everyone else affected and continuing my lifelong intense love of firefighters.
— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) December 6, 2017
Empowering movement earns Time’s accolade
On Wednesday, the #MeToo “Silence Breakers” were named as Time Magazine’s 2017 Person of the Year. The #MeToo global Twitter movement took wing in October as the ongoing Harvey Weinstein scandal broke. Millions of victims have revealed their own history of sexual abuse and harassment, including Hollywood stars Taylor Swift, Ashley Judd, Rose McGowan and Terry Crews.
The summer of cricket is here
The Women’s Big Bash League kicks off its third season tomorrow with six games being played. The Sydney Sixers and the Sydney Thunder go head-to-head on Sunday at North Sydney Oval at 2pm. The Men’s BBL begins in two weeks, when Sydney’s cross-town rivals play the first match of the series at Spotless Stadium, Sydney Olympic Park.
Coming to a cinema near you
The highly anticipated eighth instalment of the Star Wars series will go on general release next Thursday, December 14. Star Wars: The Last Jedi features Mark Hamill, the late Carrie Fisher (in her last film) and Daisy Ridley.
On Boxing Day The Greatest Showman, starring Australia’s Hugh Jackman, will be released as well as a remake of Robin William’s Jumanji. The new movie, Jumaniji: Welcome to the Jungle, features Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, Nick Jonas.
Pitch Perfect 3 round offs the trilogy of the acapella films on New Year’s Day, 2018. – Compiled from web sources by Olivia Silk and Joshua Gaske
More marriage equality celebration:
Magda’s earned a rest 🌈 pic.twitter.com/I3B4MI6pGD
— Bill Shorten (@billshortenmp) December 7, 2017
Today I woke up an equal citizen ❤😘🌈🙏🏻😍🎉🏳️🌈
— Magda Szubanski (@MagdaSzubanski) December 7, 2017
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) December 7, 2017
— David Pocock (@pocockdavid) December 7, 2017