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A Senate Select Committee was established just before Christmas to examine the consequences for freedom should marriage be redefined.

The committee is taking public submissions until this Friday, January 13.

It is vital we take this opportunity to speak.

You can use the form below to send a short submission expressing your concerns about the loss of freedom that will occur if marriage is redefined in law.

Please do not use a salutation, this will be inserted automatically.

The Committee will not take form submissions, so please do not cut and paste.

But we live in a democracy and you have the right to put your views to your elected Senators. So please consider the information below and use it to inform what you write.

It is vital that we act now. If we don’t, proponents of same-sex marriage will continue to falsely say there are no consequences to change.

Background

In the small number of countries where marriage has been redefined, precious freedoms have been lost.

Children have also lost the freedom to know the love of their biological parents.

Florists, bakers and photographers have been fined and forced into costly litigation simply for living out their belief that marriage is between one man and one woman.

Parents are forced to send their children to radical sex education classes. The list of consequences is long.

A draft bill before the federal parliament proposes to protect ministers and churches only. But professional pastors are not the only Australians who have religious freedom rights.

We hear a lot about so-called “marriage equality”. The truth is same-sex couples already have equal rights.

But if marriage is redefined, those who wish to live out a different view in public will be taken to court and fined. That is not freedom. That is not the vision of Australian tolerance most of us grew up with.

Already Greens’ politicians are calling us homophobes, haters and bigots because we believe in marriage. A Greens’ activist, at the urging of the same-sex marriage movement, has already dragged Hobart Archbishop Julian Porteous through a lengthy legal process simply for teaching about marriage.

Imagine what will happen if the law changes. State-based anti-discrimination law will become a weapon to fine and silence those of us who will never believe in the state’s redefinition of marriage and the injustice to children it perpetuates.

Other points to consider

  • Changing federal law with no thought about how this impacts on state-based “hate speech” laws turns millions of well-meaning Australians into bigots who could be fined. The action against Archbishop Porteous and the Australian Catholic Bishops proves this point and we know activists are waiting for their next opportunity. You or your pastor could be next. This is because Mr Brandis’ draft law does not protect anyone who wishes to publicly assert the truth about marriage.
  • In the few countries overseas where marriage has been redefined, florists, bakers and photographers have been fined and dragged through the courts.
  • In the United States, people like Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochrane and Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich have lost their jobs because of their beliefs about marriage. They were demonised by activists until they were forced out.
  • In Northern Ireland, Daniel and Amy McArthur of Ashers Bakery were fined for declining to decorate a cake with a pro-same-sex marriage political slogan.
  • The head of the Australian Marriage Equality movement is Alex Greenwich. He is a member of the New South Wales Parliament and he is pushing to remove the protections for religious freedom for Christian schools to employ staff who support their values. The Victorian Government, which also supports redefining marriage, narrowly lost a vote to take away this freedom. If the federal Marriage Act is changed, removing freedom will become much easier. Mr Brandis’ draft bill does nothing to ensure more freedoms will not be lost.
  • Mr Brandis’ draft also does nothing to protect the freedom of conscience of business owners who serve the wedding industry.
    And like Mr Brandis, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten believes businesses who decline to serve same-sex weddings should be fined, just as we have seen overseas.
    For example, any reception venue not owned by a church or religious organisation will be forced to provide services to same-sex weddings, regardless of the owner’s conscientiously held views on marriage.
    This is not freedom, it is coercion. It’s not the Australia most of us envisage for ourselves or our children.
  • Most importantly, redefining marriage forces children to miss out on either their mother or father. Children have no say in whether or not they are denied, for life, the love of their parents.
  • Finally, the draft bill does nothing to address the freedom of parents to protect their children from being taught that gender is irrelevant through radical programs like “Safe Schools”. Removing the gender requirement from the legal definition of marriage has flow-on effects for what your children will be taught at school.
    In Canada, a father, Steve Tourloukis, lost the right to remove his child from radical sex education programs which became compulsory after marriage was redefined

Australian proponents of same-sex marriage keep telling us there are no consequences of change. Many politicians believe this. But it is not true.

This is why we must speak up now.

We live in a participatory democracy. This is one issue in which we cannot afford not to participate.

Thanks for taking action.

Lyle Shelton
Managing Director