Ratings plan a kick in the arts

Tamara Winikoff – The Punch

Artists are “appalled” at a suggestions art should get a classification scheme, similar to that used for movies, television and video games. A Senate committee has recommended one be introduced for controversial artwork such as the images of nude children produced by Bill Henson. Here, Tamara Winikoff gives us her perspective.

3 Main Bodies in Christianity Reach 'Historic' Agreement in Evangelism Ethics

Katherine T. Phan - Christian Post

The three main bodies in Christianity, representing about 90 percent of Christians worldwide, released a "historic" agreement Monday on how Christians should conduct themselves when witnessing in a religiously diverse context.

Same-Sex Marriage: Gay Couples Sue NJ

Geoff Mulvihill - TIME

(TRENTON, N.J.) — Seven gay and lesbian New Jersey couples, along with many of their children, are going to court to try to force the state to recognize gay marriage.

The families say in their legal complaint that the state's civil union law designed to give gay couples the same legal protections as married couples has not fulfilled that promise.

Public leadership, personal opinion

Liam Moore - The Drum

Quite a few things have happened in last few days. The state of New York legalised gay marriage. The Queensland state Labor conference passed a motion which overwhelmingly supported same-sex marriage. Julia Gillard, at the Western Australian state Labor conference; claimed that she's not behind the times and that her government's decisions are based on "what's right" for Australia. Her views are "well known".

‘Gay Marriage,’ Libertarians, and Civil Rights

George Weigel - National Review Online

According to a New York Times story of June 25, an essential part of the coalition that brought “gay marriage” to the Empire State consisted of Republican financial high-rollers who gave Republican legislators cover for voting in favor of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s “marriage equality” bill while generously funding the pro–“gay marriage” ground campaign, and who “were inclined to see the issue as one of personal freedom, consistent with their more libertarian views.”

Secrets of obscenity: the classification riddle

Nick Ross - ABC

Australian classification laws are in the process of being overhauled, an overhaul which may see their powers increased. But few people know exactly what is currently banned in Australia.

Pokies debacle: Nats accused

Royce Millar - The Age

Deputy Premier Peter Ryan has been accused by Labor of being a key culprit in last year's failed auction of poker machine licences, which resulted in Victorian taxpayers being short-changed as much as $3.5 billion.

Beddy-byes by 9: pub lobby scorns nannyism

Matthew Moore - SMH

A liquor industry head has issued an impassioned call to the state government to wind back drinking laws he says have created a nanny state where ordinary people are persecuted for having a good time.

Aboriginal advisory panel wants term 'invasion' included in constitution

Matthew Moore - SMH

After succeeding in their push for the City of Sydney to call white settlement an ''invasion'', the City's Aboriginal Advisory Panel now wants the term used in Australia's constitution.

Mischief in the Family Law Act

Patricia Merkin - Online Opinion

On January 29 2009, an unimaginable act took place on the West Gate Bridge in Melbourne. Horrified motorists reported seeing a man throw a little girl from the bridge into the river below like a piece of unwanted garbage. The latest family law inquiry was generated by this crime because this little girl was killed by her own father after the Family Court made an order that led to the opportunity for him to commit this crime. This event revealed an unintended consequence or "mischief" in family law processes may be that a parent who is a risk to their children is not being adequately identified during family law processes.

Feminism, Islamic style

Alistair Campbell - The Drum

The elaborate hoax of a lesbian girl in Damascus has shocked the world. For many it was impossible to conceive that a woman, let alone a lesbian, would be able to express themselves politically and socially in an Islamic country like Syria.

The skill of being heard but not seen

Marius Benson - The Drum

Lobbyists are periodically wheeled out to centre stage to play the villain in our national political music hall.

Campaigners anger at Queensland schools using corporal punishment

Tanya Chilcott - The Courier Mail

Corporal punishment is still being used at some Queensland schools as a call is made for it to be abolished.

Child welfare advocates say it is a breach of human dignity and children should not be deliberately hurt at school.