For many years the ultimate goal of homosexual activists was to gain full acceptance and endorsement by society. It is not just having the ability to ‘marry’. Yes, homosexual ‘marriage’, and relationship ‘rights’ – including surrogacy, IVF, adoption, birth certificates, relationship registers and other matters relating to their personal relationships – are important aspects of their campaign. But, given that the evidence shows that few homosexual couples actually ‘marry’ once they can legally do so (in overseas countries that have homosexual ‘marriage’ it is usually much less than 20% of homosexual couples), this issue is more about being seen as ‘equal’ and about the endorsing of homosexual relationships by the community.
In aiming to gain full acceptance by the community of their actions and relationships, they want to remove ‘religious exceptions’ in anti-discrimination law. In 1995, Salt Shakers reported on a Discussion Paper on LGBTI matters that was released by the Democrats, calling for federal anti-discrimination laws based on sexuality, the legalisation of homosexual ‘marriage’, and ‘no exemptions for churches’. With the Liberals on the Senate Committee raised up to consider the Democrats bill writing a minority report and the Howard Liberal government coming to power soon after, the Democrats’ Bill never gained support and this held back much of their ‘progress’. Homosexual groups have run various campaigns over many years that are aimed at gaining equality.
The campaigns have sought to extend anti-discrimination laws, introduce vilification laws and remove exemptions in anti-discrimination law by religious organisations and Christian schools. The recently formed Australian homosexual activist group just.equal has launched a new campaign, alongside their campaign for ‘marriage equality’, that reveals what they really want. Their home page begins with “Dignity, Equality, Justice, Advocacy, Action, Fairness, Respect, Families, Individuals, Strength and Diversity. just.equal is an Australian community campaign to advocate for justice and equality for LGBTIQ Australians their families, friends and communities.” Their ‘About’ statement declares (at the very end) “we will ensure dignity, respect and equality for LGBTIQ Australians”.
What does ‘dignity and respect’ mean? It means full endorsement of homosexuality by the community. They don’t want an open debate, especially if it includes some hard facts about homosexuality. Just.equal have launched a campaign to remove all religious exemptions or exceptions in anti-discrimination and equal opportunity laws. They started by campaigning to support the Victorian Labor Party’s Bill that was narrowly defeated late last year in the Victorian Parliament. That Bill aimed to remove religious exceptions regarding employment by religious organisations and Christian schools unless the organisation could prove that it is an “inherent requirement” of the job that the employee meet certain prescribed standards relating to religion, sexuality, gender and marital status.
But just.equal want to go further than Labor, by removing all religious exceptions from anti-discrimination laws. The Greens also want to remove all religious exceptions. They don’t want the ‘inherent requirement’ test, related to sexuality and gender, for religious organisations or Christian schools. Of course, they would really like to see all religious exceptions removed from the Act, not just those relating to ’employment’. Their statement for the 2014 election told how they had previously moved amendments to remove the exemptions that allow religious organisations to discriminate but the Liberal, National and Labor parties voted to keep them. “We will not be deterred. We will continue to push for reform” the statement said.
The Greens also want to remove all religious exemptions relating to the federal Sex Discrimination Act. In 2013, ‘sexuality’ was added to this anti-discrimination law. This mirrors what just.equal is aiming for. The campaign by just.equal is merely the latest in a long line of campaigns. Many of the LGBTIQ+ lobby groups have been advocating for a wide range of changes to legislation over decades. Many of them have opposed all religious exceptions in equal opportunity law. Many groups have pushed for vilification or hate-speech laws as well. If this was added to the federal law, it could be like Section 18C with an ‘offend or insult’ clause! These laws have the effect of shutting down all opposition to homosexuality by churches and the general community. We must continue to speak up now, while we still can.
NSW PARLIAMENTARY REPORT ON SEXUALISATION OF CHILDREN SHOULD BE RELEASED
The Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) has joined calls for the NSW government to release the parliamentary inquiry report into the Sexualisation of Children and Young People. The joint parliamentary inquiry began in October last year to examine, among other things, the controversial ‘Safe Schools’ program which introduces children to radical sexual concepts and teaches them their gender is fluid. The committee had its last hearing in April and signed off on its report in September. ACL NSW Director Mark Makowiecki said the ACL and a number of other organisations expressed concerns about the Safe Schools program in their submissions to the inquiry.
“I am concerned by media reporting that the report may shelve plans to give parents an ‘opt in’ option when it comes to their children’s participation in ‘Safe Schools’,” Mr Makowiecki said. “ACL is concerned that parental consent requirements by the federal government, which funds the program, are not being met by the NSW Education Department.” Seventeen thousand Chinese-Australian community members recently signed a petition to the NSW Parliament expressing concern about the program. “NSW parents are keen for Education Minister Adrian Piccoli to release the report and the committee’s recommendations so greater light can be shone on the Commonwealth-funded program which the NSW Government has allowed into its schools,” Mr Makowiecki said.
“Suggestions that the report is being ‘buried’ play into parental concerns that their voices are not being heard. They fear that their rights as the primary educators of their children are being trampled and they worry the government is permitting radical sexual and gender ideologues, such as ‘Safe Schools’ to shape the moral formation of their kids. “It is important the report is released.”
MARGARET COURT SAYS SHE HAS BEEN MALIGNED FOR HER BELIEFS BY THE ABC
Tennis great Margaret Court says she felt maligned by the ABC for her religious beliefs and opposition to gay marriage in interviews to promote her book. Court, a Perth-based Christian pastor, said the broadcaster was one-sided, barely touching on her church charity work. She did 22 media appearances to promote her autobiography, including eight with the ABC, but said the national broadcaster was the only outlet that seemed to have an agenda. “They weren’t really interested in my tennis much; all they were interested in was hitting my beliefs for standing for marriage between a man and a woman,” Court said. “I think we have to look at the fact this is happening, because it was not very nice in there, it was horrible, it was below-the-belt stuff.”
“What has gone wrong? It used to be full of good religious programs. There was nothing about Christianity in my interviews, it was all on gay marriage.” Court said the interviews were particularly confronting on pre-recorded shows One Plus One with Jane Hutcheon, Radio National Drive with Patricia Karvelas and on ABC Goulburn Murray with Gaye Pattison. An ABC spokesman said several programs had agreed to interview Court while she promoted her book, which mentioned gay marriage. “In this context ABC presenters asked her a broad range of questions relating to her sporting career, life after tennis and her Christian beliefs,” he said. Court acknowledged she deserved scrutiny, but said most ABC interviewers did not seek to understand her point of view.