Let’s show the Hobart City Council we support the DARK MOFO festival

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Let’s show the Hobart City Council we support the DARK MOFO festival which is held in Hobart, Tasmania, each year for a couple of weeks in Winter.

Change often meets resistance. There is no debate about that.

The purpose of this petition is to demonstrate to Hobart City Council that we, as intelligent humans who embrace creative and cultural experiences, fully support the DARK MOFO festival being held in Hobart.

Recently it has been reported in the media that The Lord Mayor of Hobart City Council has ‘been inundated’ with objections to this festival being held in Hobart, as it promotes an ‘unhealthy culture’.

            ‘Mayor Ron Christie has declared he wants to "put the brakes" on Dark Mofo because it has become too controversial and suggested council reconsider the financial support it provides. Yesterday Ald Christie said he and his colleagues had been inundated with complaints about the festival, including the "unhealthy culture" it was generating.’

I would like to offer an alternative view to that statement, in every sense of the word.

I think it is fair to say that not every person lives by the mainstream code, practices a vanilla lifestyle or has a conservative belief system or view of the world.  Some of us think that being able to express our creativity and views, to pursue creative interests and entertainment which are aligned to our world view, and not be suppressed into submission, is a fairly important thing to strive for.

DARK MOFO provides an opportunity, for any person who is interested to do so, to experience some different and exciting events which are not otherwise available to them in Hobart. It does not discriminate. You can all come along… and many people do come along.

Tourism skyrockets during this festival. Local businesses are boosted by the tourist dollar, as well as the many locals who venture out and about and spend while they are doing so. Many events sell out within minutes. Its popularity is increasing each year, both locally and nationally.

I have travelled widely, and just last night, while at ‘Ryoji Ikeda: spectra’ on the grounds of MONA watching Striborg perform overlooking the river in the cold, I experienced a moment of sheer joy with a slight welling of tears in my eyes at the realisation that little old Hobart was now on the world stage, providing experiences comparative to those found in cities which are much more grown up, Berlin sprang to mind.
Hobart is changing. Hobart is becoming interesting.

At the Odeon Theatre on Wednesday night, while attending the event Hymns to the Dead with over 1000 others, I observed a sign inside which said something like ‘We welcome all identities, and intolerance will not be tolerated’. I think that sign perfectly represents the philosophy held by so many festival goers. We are all there enjoying the events and atmosphere offered to us. All of us. Irrespective of our world view. Enjoying art, in all its forms, as a vibrant community of people wanting to experience what life has to offer outside of our mostly mundane existences.

Hobart City Council is reconsidering its support for this festival based on the opinions of conservatives who object to the festival.

I am of the view that the festival is awesome. 

I invite you to support my view and sign this petition.

Doing so will show your support to the principles of fairness and diversity in art and culture, giving people experiences ranging from simple entertainment to broadening their minds by trying, observing or thinking something new.

I think we should recognise it as a game-changer for Hobart, embrace it for the artistic freedoms it brings with it, and fully support it now and into the future.

Hopefully the Hobart City Council will do the same.