“Some of the statements made in Tasmania’s parliament last night show how one-sided media coverage of the marriage debate has been so far,” FamilyVoice Tasmania director Jim Collins said today.
“I was alarmed by three key aspects.
“Firstly, it was a Greens-driven political stunt – since marriage is clearly a federal matter,” he said. “Activism in the absence of effective public policy for our state’s real priorities is a waste of parliament’s time.
“Secondly, the view that redefining marriage will not harm marriage is simply not true. As Liberal member for Lyons Guy Barnett rightly stated, it would unleash an ‘environment which undermines marriage itself – which will violate the rights of the child’.
“Thirdly, free speech is vital for our national marriage debate. Members from both the government and opposition have voiced their concerns over the attempt to silence Archbishop Porteous using anti-discrimination law.”
ALP member for Denison Madeleine Ogilvy said: “There is increasing intolerance in our community… everybody has a right to be heard.”
Michael Ferguson, Health Minister and member for Bass said: “The tactic is to [unjustly] marginalise the people who believe in traditional marriage as religious, as haters, as intolerant, and, very cleverly, as uncaring.”
Mr Collins urged Premier Will Hodgman to do as he has hinted and revoke section 17(1) of the Anti-Discrimination Act.
“Redefining marriage would have profound harmful consequences for family, education and social norms,” he said. “We need the freedom to debate this properly. It’s crucial that people understand what is really at stake before they vote in a federal plebiscite.”
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