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Colourful fight

CHALKING IT UP: Ray Parry and Petr Lehner draw a rainbow crossing in Lismore.
CHALKING IT UP: Ray Parry and Petr Lehner draw a rainbow crossing in Lismore.

THEY did not get angry, they got chalking.

The DIY rainbow craze that spawned from the internet reached Lismore last week, with a number of hand-made rainbows being drawn at crossings and in streets, to symbolise people's push for marriage equality in Australia.

Hand-made rainbows started to appear in Sydney last week after the NSW Government removed the rainbow crossing in Taylor Square, Oxford St, in Darlinghurst.

Gay and lesbian groups lobbied NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell and Minister for Roads and Ports Duncan Gay to keep the crossing, but the rainbow was removed on April 11.

A number of rainbow crossings appeared across Sydney over the weekend, and by last week hundreds of DIY rainbow crossings appeared in Sydney, then across NSW.

Now hundreds have been drawn across the world, with some of them in China, France, Hawaii and Argentina.

In the Northern Rivers, there were rainbow crossings recorded online in Byron Bay, Eureka and Mullumbimby.

Lismore resident Peter Lerner decided the city should also join the move, and recruited his friend Raymond Parry to help him last Thursday.

"We did it (the rainbow) just before the bridge over to North Lismore, just on the roundabout in Molesworth and Woodlark Sts," he said.

"It is for marriage equality.

"All over Australia and now also overseas, after the NSW Government removed the rainbow crossing in Sydney, and after New Zealand passed a bill for marriage equality, it is time for Australia to do this."

Mr Lehner mentioned at least two other rainbows chalked in Lismore last week - one in Bounty and Carrington Sts, and another one outside the office of local MLC Thomas George, chalked by the Knitting Nanas Against Gas last Thursday.

Over the weekend, other crossings were chalked in at places like Wollongbar and South Lismore.

Even APN reporters and staff got into the spirit and chalked a DIY rainbow crossing last Friday at the Media Centre in Goonellabah.

Mr Lerner invited people "to paint rainbow crossings in safe places, because we know that people in Australia support marriage equality".

"People power really makes the difference," he said.

"It's about demonstrating in some peaceful way, and what better way than to paint rainbow crossings in our region."

Southern Cross University media lecturer Jeanti St Clair said while the prolific spread of a movement via social media was not new, James Brechney's suggestion to actively engage in chalking rainbow crossings contributed to the success of his Facebook page.


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