Soapbox Speakers

What is Speakers’ Corner?

In Speakers and hecklers. on March 8, 2015 at 11:51 pm

“I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.” 
Gerry Spence.

‘To be absolutely certain about something, one must know everything or nothing about it.’
Olin Miller

Every Sunday, from 2pm until 5pm, people gather in Sydney’s beautiful Domain park to discuss matters. The ones standing on ladders are ‘the speakers’, and they believe it’s their job to educate  their ‘grasshoppers’ or ‘groundlings’.  The ones sitting in chairs believe it’s their job to point out why the speaker is wrong, and to heckle. Both parties are kept busy.

This sums up the relationship between the speakers and the hecklers.

This sums up the relationship between the speakers and the hecklers.

‘It’s good to have an open mind, but not so open that your brains fall out.’
Carl Sagan

Find past posts  on our Archives site.

The Speakers and Hecklers.

Steve Maxwell, historian and political commentator.

Steve Maxwell is the world authority on Speakers’ Corners and soapbox speakers. He has written a book on the subject, travelled to many Speakers’ Corners throughout the world (and participated), he is the author of ‘Steve Maxwell’s Passing Parade‘, and Steve’s Domain Diary, and he has spoken at Sydney’s Speakers’ Corner for yonks. We are very fortunate to have him.

In various personas, but always engaging, Steve talks about religion, Australian history and politics. Click here for highlights. To see more videos of Steve, go to the archives site. From his book, ‘Soapbox Oratory‘ Steve writes: ‘In a modern city, there must be a place where strangers can meet and discuss the issues of the day without fear of persecution; where the right to retain one’s individuality is allowed.

Ray, Christian.

Ray is concerned about your soul.

Ray is passionate about spreading the word of God. He takes the task seriously but isn’t confronting. He is a gentle man, willing to answer your questions. Here are a few highlights. For more videos of Ray, go to the archives site.

Vladimir

Vladimir has a wide range of contemporary topics. He talks about the dangers of cancel-culture and the expansion of the ‘nanny state’. He says both are inhibiting free speech and eroding our civil liberties. He also sinks his boot into companies like Facebook, for the shenanigans they get up to.
Further, he examines the ways we meet one another and treat one another. Do we speak openly and honestly, or so vaguely that people have to guess what we are saying? Is our society condoning mysandry?
The fact that his material is interesting and well presented is a bonus. Come along and hear what he has to say, and if you disagree with him, tell him!

Helmut Cerncic, metaphysicist  (occasional speaker)

Helmut 4

Helmut once beat Arnold Schwartzenegger in a body building contest and in Sydney worked as the professional wrestler, Helmut Rommel.
More importantly, Helmut knows a lot about metaphysics, and is happy to explain why Isaac Newton was an ignoramus.
Helmut calls his listeners his ‘groundlings’. Here are some highlights.
For more videos of Helmut, go to the archives site and to his own site, Is Science the New Religion?’.

Mark the Grinner, (occasional speaker)

As a heckler, Mark regularly gets a laugh from the crowd with his meticulously crafted questions. As a speaker his humour is still there, but his talks have substance. He comments on human behaviour and attitudes, and he doesn’t hold back. To see Mark in action click here. Mark’s  companion, Sue, is less vocal, but she has no trouble speaking her mind when she has something to say.

John August (occasional speaker)

John speaks earnestly on a wide range of subjects, and hosts his own show on Radio Skid Row, 88.9 FM every Tuesday, from noon until 2pm.

John is an active member of the Pirate Party, which is a serious political party devoted to making Australia more democratic. He and other pirates speak at the Domain now and then about their policies and other topical matters. (That’s ‘topical’, not ‘tropical’.)

To see videos of John performing at Speakers’ Corner go to his Youtube channel.
John also has a website in which he comments upon current affairs, both here and abroad.
He is a busy man.

News for Speakers’ Corner, Sunday 13th May 2021

In News for Speakers' Corner on June 14, 2021 at 10:51 am

“Marriage is successful when it consists in leaving about three or four things a day unsaid.”
Harlan MIller

1. The cold and the absence of international tourists has made Speakers’ Corner quiet lately, but Steve Maxwell tells me the crowds have increased a little because of the Archibald exhibition.

2. If you think you know which of these three designs for medical products is not a sensible one, report immediately to our Facebook page.

News for Speakers’ Corner, Sunday 6th June

In News for Speakers' Corner on June 7, 2021 at 1:03 pm

‘The strongest minds are often those of who the noisy world hears least.’
 William Wordsworth.

1. Steve Maxwell was unable to attend today because gout got him! He’ll be back this coming Sunday, and he will be talking about politics.

2. Helmut was there, as was Vladimir, Ray and Bill the evangelist. Bill suggested that sinners may come to a bad end if they don’t repent. Who would have thought?

3. Apparently, this month NASA will be releasing all the information it has on UFOs. Finally, Mirko will be vindicated.

 

4. Can you tell which design is the poor one, and which one is quaint? If so, you are welcome to visit our Facebook Page.

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