12 November 2015

The Australian Christian Lobby has called on the Greens to stop calling people ‘bigots’.

As the Greens today introduce same-sex marriage into the Parliament for the 17th time since 2004, ACL Managing Director Lyle Shelton said it was time for them to start engaging the arguments instead of name-calling.

“Adam Bandt’s labelling of three parliamentarians ‘bigots’ simply because they are standing up for marriage between one man and one woman is a new low in Australian politics,” Mr Shelton said.

“On this reasoning, the European Court of Human Rights and the United Nations Human Rights Committee are comprised of bigots, perpetuating hate speech, for saying that it is not necessary to include same-sex couples in marriage. This clearly is not the case.

“Changing the definition of marriage will take away freedom of conscience, thought and religion from millions of Australians and it will lead to more children being denied their parents. All Australians must be free to discuss these consequences without fear of being labelled a ‘bigot’,” Mr Shelton said.

“A law which effectively labels most Muslims, Christians, ethnic Australians and other supporters of man-woman marriage as ‘bigots’ is not the way to unite Australia.”

Mr Shelton said the Turnbull Government’s peoples’ vote on marriage to be held after the election should be conducted in a respectful manner where both sides were free to speak without fear.

“Mr Bandt should apologise to his parliamentary colleagues and the millions of Australians who will always believe that marriage is between one man and one woman.”