As this article below reveals, a victory for the movement to undermine marriage and family will not end there. They will not be satisfied with that and will try to force all opponents to submit to their humanist religion, with no exception. The law will be used to full effect to make people bow the knee. This is what all tyrants have done throughout history and it looks like we are about to get some first hand experience of this here in our once young and free Australia:
Date August 4, 2015 - 12:00AM
By David Glasgow
Marriage equality increasingly appears inevitable, but its opponents are using religious freedom to undercut the terms of the victory.
Australians should ignore the recent calls to water down our discrimination laws. As the question of same-sex marriage moves from if to when, opponents have shifted their attention to religious freedom.
Lyle Shelton, from the Australian Christian Lobby, argues that same-sex marriage and religious freedom are "incompatible". Adam Ch'ng, a director of Connect Ministry, warns that same-sex marriage places the freedom of faith communities "at risk".
Their strategy is unsurprising. Religious liberty has formed an important part of the campaign against same-sex marriage in the United States for about a decade, and it became the centrepiece after the US Supreme Court granted full marriage equality in June.
Several US states have introduced, or threatened to introduce, laws shielding religious individuals and businesses that object to same-sex marriage. Now, opponents are trying to import the same agenda into Australia.
This is not about the liberty of churches and ministers not to perform same-sex weddings if it violates their faith. That kind of religious freedom is a given, and no bills introduced in Australia have challenged it. The core of the latest religious freedom campaign is the liberty to refuse service.
In an episode of the ABC's Q&A in early June, a Christian calligrapher called for legal safeguards to allow her business to refuse orders for gay wedding invitations. Others, looking again to the US, have raised the spectre of bakers, photographers, florists and reception venues being forced, against their conscience, to serve same-sex couples.
It might appear overwrought to warn of the impending tyranny of gay couples demanding flower arrangements, but there is a beguiling logic to the argument. With a large number of wedding vendors from which to choose, is it not reasonable to allow businesses with religious objections to opt out?
No, it's not.
Australian law prevents service providers from discriminating against customers on grounds such as race, sex or sexual orientation, because we recognise that those attributes should not impede a person's participation in civic life.
We also recognise that placing marginalised groups in the ever-present danger of being turned away is not conducive to building a tolerant and peaceful society, and would reinforce historical patterns of exclusion.
By its nature, discrimination law prevents people from picking and choosing customers according to their beliefs. The law insists, rightly, that to reap the benefits of opening a business to the public, the business must be open on equal terms.
Religious opponents often reply that sexual orientation is not a morally irrelevant characteristic, such as race or sex; it is a controversial behaviour.
Just listen to business owners in the US as they defend their refusal to serve same-sex couples. They argue that their plight is comparable to a synagogue asked to cater a neo-Nazi party, a black DJ asked to spin tunes at a Ku Klux Klan dance, or a Muslim baker asked to bake a cake with a message denigrating the Koran. In a particularly charming illustration, one Colorado baker explained that his unwillingness to make a cake for a same-sex couple's wedding was no different to his unwillingness to make a "paedophile cake".
Living in a liberal society means that individuals are allowed to hold repugnant views that equate same-sex couples with paedophiles and neo-Nazis. It does not mean there is a free-standing right to opt out of the law when the community as a whole takes a different view.
Some might say that passing a substantial social reform such as marriage equality requires compromise. Isn't it fair enough to make a narrowly targeted exemption applying only to wedding vendors, as long as we leave the rest of discrimination law intact?
The problem is that if you allow businesses to make faith-based conscience claims, there is no principled reason why an exemption should be limited to weddings.
Many religious people object to all homosexual activity and relationships, not just marital ones. If baking a cake makes a business owner complicit in the sin of same-sex marriage, a wide range of activities could make them complicit in the sin of same-sex relationships.
What's to stop an architect from claiming that it violates his or her faith to build a home for a same-sex couple, or a police officer saying the same when asked to keep the peace at a pride march?
These examples might seem fanciful, but we need only look again to the US, where a doctor has refused to treat the child of a lesbian couple, a DJ has declined to work at a gay man's birthday party, and a mechanic has refused to repair vehicles owned by any openly gay person. This is religious liberty on steroids.
As marriage equality increasingly seems inevitable, we must not be complacent. Opponents have learnt from the US that their loss might be assured over the long run, but the terms of their defeat are up for grabs. And they are using religious freedom to launch a rearguard attack.
Australian discrimination law reflects our inclusive society. It respects a diversity of private views, while requiring everyone to play by a fair set of rules in the public square.
Let's keep it that way.
David Glasgow is an associate director and research fellow in the Public Interest Law Centre at New York University School of Law, and an Australian lawyer.
Every child comes from and needs BOTH a mother and a father. Same-sex "marriage" intentionally keeps either a mother or a father from the child. Government should protect the child through upholding traditional marriage.
Please Speak Up Australia. Defend children and freedom. Say NO to the proposition to change marriage laws.
In accordance with s 6(5) of the Marriage Law Survey (Additional Safeguards) Act 2017, this communication was authorised by Craig Manners of Ngumbe, Malawi.
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