3 July 2015
The Australian Christian Lobby welcomed a more thorough debate of the consequences of redefining marriage as more and more senior politicians spoke out against change.
ACL Managing Director Lyle Shelton said it was encouraging to see the campaign to preserve marriage gaining momentum.
“Redefining marriage would be a serious change for Australia with very real consequences,” Mr Shelton said.
“We should not rush into this simply because some other countries have sought to redefine marriage.
“There will always be millions of Australians who will always believe marriage is between a man and a woman, no matter what some politicians might say.
Sadly what we’ve seen in other countries is that these people find themselves being punished by law for living out their beliefs.
“It is entirely appropriate for Senator Abetz and others to highlight the consequences redefining marriage would have for Australia.
“Just last month Australian Marriage Equality’s Rodney Croome suggested that people should complain to the Tasmanian Human Rights Commission because the Catholic Church dared to teach children enrolled in Catholic schools the church’s teachings on marriage.”
There have also been frequent calls overseas and in Australia for so called marriage equality to be extended to three or more people or groups of people.Background
Montana State, US: Following the recent US Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage in the US, a Montana polyamorous trio have now applied for a marriage license.
Washington State, US: Barronelle Stutzmann politely declined a request from long term friends and clients to provide flowers for their gay wedding. She explained her desire not to be forced to participate in a same-sex wedding because of her conscientious convictions. The Washington State Attorney-General sued her along with the couple and won.
Colorado US: Baker Jack Philips declined to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex wedding and was ordered to “cease and desist” from discriminating against same-sex couples and provide anti-discrimination re-education for his staff.
Boston MA, US: Catholic Charities were forced to shut down after the state’s redefinition of marriage meant they would have been forced to provide adoption services to same-sex parents.
Vermont US: Catholic innkeepers were sued after declining to host a wedding reception for two lesbians.
New Mexico: Photographer found guilty of unlawful discrimination by Human Rights Commission for declining to photograph a lesbian ‘commitment ceremony’. The photographer was ordered to pay $6,000
Illinois: Bed and breakfast owners facing lawsuit for refusing to host a civil union ceremony.
UK: UK Greens leader Natalie Bennett has signalled her party’s openness to disposing of the numeric requirement of marriage when asked by the polyamorist community if they too could have marriage equality.