The Brisbane City Council’s capitulation to rainbow ideology will be of concern to every parent who does not want to see their children taught by “Safe Schools” that their gender is fluid, Australian Christian Lobby Queensland Director Wendy Francis said today.
The Council’s foray into same-sex marriage and programs against so-called “transphobia” are a far cry from its core business of roads, rates and rubbish.
Ms Francis said most people don’t know what ‘transphobia’ is because they are not afraid of other people but they were concerned that Lord Mayor Cr Graham Quirk’s signing on to these political programs would further embolden the promoters of the so-called “Safe Schools” program.
“Parents all over the nation have been shocked by the so-called Safe Schools program teaching children as young as four through the Gender Fairy story book that their gender is fluid,” Ms Francis said.
“The Queensland Government continues to keep a secret list of schools which have signed on to the Safe Schools agenda to allow boys identifying as girls to use the girls’ toilets at school.
“Parents have not bought into the idea that teachers should be discouraged from using ‘he’ and ‘she’ to describe children at school.”
Ms Francis said the Brisbane City Council’s sign-on to rainbow politics and its agenda to stamp out alleged “transphobia” would cause parents to worry that society was caving in to the idea that they were no longer free to accept the biological gender of their children.
“The Council should stick to providing good roads, collecting our rubbish and keeping our rates low. If the Coalition is elected, the people will have the opportunity through a plebiscite to make their views on the rainbow agenda clear,” Ms Francis said.
Media contact: 02 6259 0431
14 March 2016
The Australian Christian Lobby has called into question the plebiscite costings released today by international accountancy firm PwC because it lacks objectivity.
An ACL spokesperson said, “PwC is not a neutral organisation in the same-sex marriage debate. The firm is a public supporter of same-sex marriage and of Australian Marriage Equality, who are working on the yes case for the plebiscite.
“Having voiced such strong public support for same-sex marriage, PwC is not an unbiased source of information when it comes to the plebiscite or in efforts to redefine marriage.
“These costings fail to take into account the value of a people’s vote. It is valuable to democracy and valuable to the Australian people who mostly support the plan. They also fail to consider the enormous cost of the nearly 20 times this issue has been raised in parliament in recent years. Parliamentary time, committees and inquiries are very expensive.
“The issue of same-sex marriage has gone before the parliament almost 20 times in recent years. The plebiscite is an important way to finally resolve the matter in a democratic way.
“If proponents for change are so confident of overwhelming public support, it is perplexing that they are relentlessly trying to have the people’s vote scrapped. Surely they should welcome the opportunity to have such a resounding endorsement of their vision for marriage and family.
“By doing whatever it takes to undermine the plebiscite, proponents of change are sending open-minded Australians a message that they would prefer to rush controversial law change without consultation rather than allow people the opportunity to carefully examine the consequences.
“By contrast, those in favour of preserving marriage do not seem to fear democracy and are open to all the consultation and discussion that a plebiscite will involve.
“Australians have shown that they can be trusted to respectfully debate sensitive issues.”
ACL Managing Director Lyle Shelton said he was disappointed that many who were in favour of redefining marriage were doing all they could to stop the plebiscite.
“The Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has repeatedly said the plebiscite will be held after the next federal election,” Mr Shelton said.
“If proponents for change are so confident of overwhelming public support, why do they keep trying to have the peoples’ vote scrapped? Surely they would welcome the opportunity to have such a resounding endorsement of their vision for marriage and family,” Mr Shelton said.
“By doing whatever it takes to undermine the plebiscite, proponents of change are sending open-minded Australians a message that they would prefer to rush law change rather than allow people the opportunity to carefully examine the consequences.
“Sure democracy is expensive but the cost is reasonable given that redefining marriage is such a big and fundamental social change.
“For people who claim such strong support, it has been extraordinary to see the lengths they have gone to to undermine the democratic vote.
“Australians have shown that they can be trusted to respectfully debate such a sensitive issue.”
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Below is a copy of the opinion piece. You can also read it on The Australian website here.
No mandate for change
Tomorrow in Canberra nine people - eight Labor and one from the Greens - will set themselves up to decide marriage policy affecting the entire nation.
Capitalising on the normal disruption of a change of federal government, the ACT government will introduce a bill for same-sex marriage into the territory's 17-member assembly.
With no residency requirement, the Labor-Greens government is mischievously creating a problem for interstate people who will not be married when they cross back over the border.
The Liberals, sensibly, are not buying into it and will oppose the bill on constitutional grounds.
The commonwealth parliament has the power to override territory legislation and, because marriage is a federal responsibility, it should do this. It is not in Australia's interest to have a hodgepodge of marriage laws. It is concerning that same-sex marriage advocates say they would rather see an ACT law challenged in the High Court so that judges, not elected people, can settle the issue. Clearly, the strategy is legislation by fatigue and, if that doesn't work, bypass democracy and get it before judges.
The last thing Australia needs is US-style judicial decision-making on issues of social policy. The federal election and this week's descent into farce means there is now an opportunity to put the debate about changing the definition of marriage behind us and move on.
Kevin Rudd made gay marriage a signature campaign issue by promising to legislate within 100 days if re-elected. He pushed it all the way to election eve and the issue received prominent and overwhelmingly positive media coverage.
But the electorate was underwhelmed. Labor returned its lowest primary vote in 100 years and the party of same-sex marriage, the Greens, suffered a 3 per cent swing.
Where was the pink vote?
A poll commissioned by Australian Christian Lobby and conducted last week by JWS Research asked people to identify what issues were most important to them when they voted on September 7. The poll confirmed what parliamentarians in touch with their electorates have always said: same-sex marriage is a low-order issue outside a handful of inner-city seats.
The poll found that 13 per cent of voters rated it as a top-three issue. Just 4 per cent of Coalition voters thought it was important. Among Labor voters, 85 per cent don't think it is a high priority and 72 per cent of Greens voters are not energised by it.
But we already knew this.
In August last year, MPs reported back to parliament after surveying their electorates on the issue. Greens member for Melbourne Adam Bandt had a motion carried in the parliament requesting MPs to undertake this.
Of 30 who reported back, 24 revealed where their electorates stood. Six MPs claimed majority support for same-sex marriage but 18 said their constituents were opposed to change.
In the seat of Dawson, George Christensen reported opposition of 456 to 78; in O'Connor, member Tony Crook reported 523 to 115; in Deakin, Mike Symon reported 1015 to 65; in Blair, Shayne Neumann reported 580 to 115; in Cook, Scott Morrison reported 850 to 50; in the seat of Cowan, Luke Simpkins reported 903 to 103; and in Fowler member Chris Hayes said 90 per cent of his electorate supported marriage between a man and a woman. Bandt had kicked an own goal in demanding MPs survey their electorates.
Soon after, same-sex marriage bills were defeated in the House of Representatives and in the Senate by almost two to one.
Same-sex marriage advocates claim that since the election they have 50 confirmed supporters in the House of Representatives, an increase of eight on the previous parliament.
However, the chamber has 150 members and, despite the war of attrition being waged on MPs by the gay lobby, they remain well short of the numbers needed to change the Marriage Act.
Despite continually claiming Australians want it, same-sex marriage advocates oppose putting it to a referendum.
What is rarely talked about is that there is no discrimination in Australian law against same-sex couples. This was completely removed in 2008 under the attorney-general at the time, Robert McClelland. As he pointed out during ACL's pre-election webcast, the gay-marriage debate is not about discrimination, it is about definition, and regardless of who legislates the matter will end up in the High Court to decide what marriage meant in 1901.
"I don't think that's a comfortable place for the High Court to be," McClelland said.
It will take extraordinary judicial gymnastics to rule it is anything other than man-woman. There are bigger issues for organisations such as ACL to pursue with the new government, such as its election-eve cutting of $4.5 billion in overseas aid to people in extreme poverty.
Same-sex marriage is far from inevitable despite what the public is constantly told.
There is no mandate for change. It's time to move on.
Lyle Shelton is the managing director of the Australian Christian Lobby.
You can watch the news report which featured Mr Shelton along with Pastor Matt Prater and Sydney Anglican Archbishop Glenn Davies. Click this link to watch the news story. LyleSheltonABCNews2Sept13
Mr Shelton was also interviewed by the ABC's Marius Benson yesterday morning on ABC's News Radio. Listen here.
It may be that the Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is concerned his new-found position on marriage is hurting his standing with Christians.
At last night’s “peoples’ forum” debate with Tony Abbott in Brisbane, the two leaders were again asked for their positions on same-sex marriage.
It was interesting that Mr Rudd went straight to concerns about religious freedom in his answer saying the church should never have to conduct same-sex weddings.
The church was not even mentioned in the question.
After years of defending man-woman marriage, Mr Rudd reiterated his new view that there could be two systems of marriage: civil same-sex marriage and church-based marriage that excluded homosexuals.
But what then does the “marriage equality” campaign mean if churches do not have to provide “marriage equality”?
It is clear from overseas examples that advocates for changing the definition of marriage will not stop until they achieve what they see as full equality.
Already a wealthy, high profile homosexual couple in the UK is planning to sue the church because they are being denied a church wedding. The ink is not even dry on the UK Parliament’s same-sex marriage bill, which was recently passed but not yet in force.
But the pressure on the church from the homosexual political agenda is not just oversees. A local leader in the marriage equality movement, Ivette Madrid of Equal Love Canberra, told ABC radio last month she could not agree to churches being exempt from performing same-sex weddings.
“The churches will be discriminating on the basis of gender and so I don’t think that should be allowed at all,” she said.
In the last Parliamentary sitting week, a law was rushed through Parliament stripping Christian aged care homes of their religious freedom to protect their ethos. The former head of Australian Marriage Equality, Alex Greenwich, wants Christian schools to be next.
It is naïve to think the church, Christian schools and charities will be allowed to happily co-exist teaching their vision of marriage and family when the state has by law changed the definition of marriage to something diametrically opposed.
The State will be obliged to ensure its definition is enforced, otherwise the law change “marriage equality” advocates seek is meaningless.
It is disappointing that Mr Rudd’s new view which he announced last May (but last night said was a position he “took some time ago”) did not include a discussion on the ethics of children missing out on the love and nurture of their natural parents, a further necessary consequence of same-sex marriage.
In Mr Rudd’s rush to legislate within 100 days if he is re-elected, the rights of the child are not even being considered nor are the implications for religious freedom and freedom of speech.
For his part, Mr Abbott continues to hold the line, although he can’t guarantee that his party room will not water down Coalition policy on marriage by demanding a conscience vote after the election.
“All I can do is candidly and honestly tell people what my view is. I support the traditional definition of marriage as between a man and a woman,” Mr Abbott said.
A political leader’s view has a powerful influence over his or her party. The best chance of retaining marriage at this election lies with the Coalition.
The Prime Minister Kevin Rudd went out of his way last night to push same-sex marriage to the forefront of the election campaign.
After one hour debating Tony Abbott on issues such as the economy, asylum seekers, aged care, climate change and Sydney’s airport, the final question from moderator David Speers of Sky News was on same-sex marriage.
Mr Rudd obviously saw it coming and had an announcement – the only one of the night – ready to go. (This story foreshadowing the announcement was posted on the Herald Sun’s website an hour-and-half before the debate kicked off).
If re-elected Mr Rudd promised yet another vote on the issue within 100 days. Same-sex marriage was defeated by a margin of almost two to one less than a year ago.
Such has been the relentless pressure from gay lobbyists, supported by large sections of the media, a rare second chance is to be granted if Labor wins.
On the ground in voter land, most parliamentarians will freely say it is a very low order.
It is ironic that Mr Rudd went to church this morning and then by evening was re-committing himself to public policy on marriage that is against the teaching of every major Christian church in the country.
After years of wooing Christian voters and campaigning against same-sex marriage, Mr Rudd’s May backflip on the issue was a big blow and a betrayal of the constituency.
Mr Abbott last night observed that there were many other important issues and reiterated that any Coalition conscience vote would be a matter for the party room after the election.
He is personally against same-sex marriage, despite his warm acknowledgement of his lesbian sister, Christine, who was in the National Press Club audience last night.
Coalition policy is to oppose same-sex marriage while ALP policy supports it.
However, ALP MPs and Senators are allowed a conscience vote. Coalition parliamentarians are not but this could change after the election.
Within seconds of the debate ending, Mr Rudd tweeted this to his 1.4 million followers:
Legislation for marriage equality within 100 days of the election with full conscience vote. I believe this is the right thing to do. KRudd
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/KRuddMP/status/366497867143200768
Within 25 minutes this email had been sent to ALP supporters:
From: Kevin Rudd
Date: 11 August 2013 7:54:53 PM AEST
Subject: It's Time:
If I am re-elected Prime Minister, I will support marriage equality legislation in the first 100 days of Parliament.
At this evening’s debate, I made that commitment to the Australian people.
If you think it’s time for marriage equality, I’d like you to stand with me and show the country that we think it's time:
I've been thinking about the meaning of marriage for a long time - and I won't hide the fact that this has been a journey for me. It is a difficult discussion, and I won't force this on anyone. It will be a free vote for members of the Labor Party.
But here is what I know: we are at our best when we give all Australians the same dignity, the same opportunity for happiness.
I believe that no matter who we love, we all should be able to make that same promise I was able to make to Therese over 30 years ago. That all of us should be allowed to marry the one we love.
I am the first Prime Minister of this country going into an election promising to support marriage equality. So if you support equal marriage, I will need your support.
This is an issue that is very personal to people. What moves us to take a stand on this issue can move others too. If you think it's time for marriage equality, share your story telling the country why.
Despite the media support of it over the past two years, same-sex marriage has remained a fringe issue in the minds of politicians and, according most of them, the public’s also.
Despite promising not to campaign for same-sex marriage, Mr Rudd last night brought it right into the centre of the election campaign.
Please consider contacting the Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to share your concern via email [email protected] or tweeting him @KRuddMP. Please consider contacting Opposition Leader Tony Abbott [email protected] or @TonyAbbottMHR to thank him for focusing on other important issues.
On Sunday night, I spoke to 2CH radio's Dominic Steele about the upcoming federal election. Listen to the interview here.
Wednesday, 19th June 2013
The Australian Christian Lobby has welcomed news for a referendum on marriage being defined as between a man and a woman in the constitution.
Acting Managing Director Nick Overton said a circuit breaker was needed to deal with the issue and believed Senator John Madigan’s decision to introduce the bill would help resolve the issue.
“Despite the Australian Parliament’s resounding rejection of redefining marriage last September, proponents continue to use parliamentary time to debate the issue,” he said.
“While this is their right in a democracy, it seems clear that the best way forward is to let the people decide and end the fatigue the electorate feels about this issue,” he said.
Mr Overton said any referendum campaign will allow a fair and balanced debate, with arguments for the unique benefits of marriage to children and society to be brought into the discourse.
Last Sunday the president of La Manif Pour Tous (meaning the protest of the demonstration for all) addressed those who attended the peaceful mass rally against the government's decision to legalise same-sex marriage. La Manif Pour Tous said over a million people marched in the event. The ACL's Katherine Spackman interviewed Sydney representative of La Manif Pour Tous on the Political Spot (see interview here)
A copy of the speech by Ludovine de la Rochère has been published on First Things.
We Will Surrender Nothing
There you are, such an enormous crowd—thank you!
Thank you to all the volunteers of La Manif pour Tous, in Paris, in the provinces too; and of course our spokespeople, among them the first of all, Frigide Barjot. You made possible our Manif pour Tous.
Thank you to intellectuals, jurists, union members, researchers, doctors, elected officials, all of whom have taken up our case. They had the courage to engage in free and independent thought.
Thanks most of all to you! The French of the metropolis, those overseas and abroad. You have the energy that was necessary to raise us up yesterday and today. And tomorrow you will lift us up also!
Keep reading the article here