It’s not ok to spray no

We’ve heard that a wave of anti same-sex marriage graffiti in the Inner West has been reported to the police. Opponents of change have sprayed the word “No” across an Enmore mural (the ‘monkey’ one on Liberty Street) and on the rear window of a ute, while the word has also been scrawled across fences, gates, letter boxes and front doors. The Inner West has stayed strong in our expression of support for marriage equality, with plenty of shops and homes displaying the rainbow flag, or even painting their walls or windows in rainbow colours.

‘Social experiments’ hit the streets

Newtown residents received an unwelcome surprise when an anti same-sex marriage contingent walked down King Street as a “social experiment” in October. Nick Folkes, the leader of the far-right group ‘The Party for Freedom’, who was also one of the chief organisers of the Cronulla riots anniversary events and last month’s failed Straight Lives Matter protest, took cameras through the streets to film encounters with locals. The campaign boasted of laying a trap for the Yes campaign to fall into, trying to prove that Yes voters would be provoked into heckling or hurling abuse. Marriage equality supporters should keep an eye out for any nasty or provocative behaviour.

Author’s home up for grabs

A Chippendale terrace is going once, going twice! The home of internationally acclaimed author David Malouf for the past three decades has been put onto the market for buyers, with an auction date set for 28 October. The six-metre wide Myrtle Street property was purchased for $175,000 in 1985, but prices for terraces on the street have been as high as $1.9 million, while a residential warehouse recently went for $3.2 million.

Will the mergers ever end?

More political shakeups are in store for the Inner West, as a police merger was announced to turn four Inner West local area commands into two. Marrickville and Newtown, and Ashfield and Burwood, will be amalgamated in a state-wide ‘re-engineering’ process that hopes to “place more officers on the front line”. Labor MPs have labelled the announcement as “shortsighted cost cutting”, with no guarantee that the merger would safeguard against a reduction in police numbers. After a wave of robberies in Ashfield last month, Marrickville recording the highest rate of domestic violence incidents, and state crime figures showing Burwood ranked in the highest band for robbery, perhaps the Inner West isn’t always as safe as we’d like to think.