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Greens snub Christian Lobby election forum

By Charlotte Harper - 21 June 2016 35

ACL election document

Greens ACT Senate candidate Christina Hobbs told the RiotACT this afternoon that neither she nor any Federal Greens candidate would attend an Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) Meet the Candidates forum tonight, and confirmed the Greens had not replied to the organisation’s questionnaire for political parties on moral and social justice issues.

“Absolutely not. While I’m happy to speak with people of all political persuasion I will not legitimise an extreme fringe group,” Ms Hobbs said.

“We didn’t receive it in ACT to my knowledge but I don’t have time to fill a survey of a fringe group with bigoted extreme views.”

Candidates scheduled to attend include Labor Senator Katy Gallagher, Liberal Senator Zed Seselja and Sex Party candidate Steven Bailey.

Senator Gallagher tweeted this afternoon, “There will be many people tonight who don’t support the election propaganda of @ACLobby.”

But Ms Hobbs urged all ACT candidates to boycott the event.

“I am not surprised to see Senator Seselja attend this event – he is a well-known opponent of gay rights – but I am incredibly disappointed to see that the Labor Party has accepted the ACL’s invitation.

“In the aftermath of the Orlando tragedy, most Canberrans would be horrified to see both of their Senators sharing the rostrum with bigots and extremists. By attending this event, Senators Seselja and Gallagher are both legitimising bigoted and offensive views.

“For too long, the Australian Christian Lobby and conservative forces have been setting the policy agenda, and spreading lies and misinformation about Australia’s LGBTI community.

“This is the same group that once said being gay was more hazardous than smoking.

“This is the same group that warned that same-sex couples having children will lead to another stolen generation.

“And this is the same group that has called for anti-discrimination laws to be ‘set-aside’ so opponents of same-sex marriage could engage in a huge race to the bottom during a plebiscite campaign.

“It’s time for Canberra’s representatives to show some leadership on this issue and pull out of tonight’s event.”

The ACL is labelling next week’s Federal election as the most important in a generation because it says “redefining marriage will … threaten many of our most fundamental freedoms”.

The Deakin-based organisation describes itself as a “grassroots movement of over 50,000 people seeking to bring a Christian influence to politics”. It is non-party partisan and non-denominational, but the major parties’ policies on two key issues of concern for the group this election, same-sex marriage and the Safe Schools program, mean it is effectively calling on its members to vote for the Coalition.

“More than any other election issues, these two will radically reshape Australia, starting with re-shaping our children’s understanding of sex and gender,” says managing director Lyle Shelton in the organisation’s election guide (an extract from which appears in the image above).

“You and I know that this is just the rehearsal. If the Coalition is elected, the next big challenge will be the campaign to preserve marriage through the promised plebiscite after the election.”

The website includes a series of links to party responses to a questionnaire on moral and social justice issues. These will provide valuable insights to voters of all perspectives. Scroll to the bottom of this page on the ACL site to find the questionnaire responses.

Recent news items on the organisation’s website include:

ACL Election Guide Highlights Labor’s Shift to the Extreme Left on Social Policy

Labor Must Be Clear On Whether It Will Fund Sex-Change Operations For Minors

Shorten’s ‘Homophobe’ Label A Bullying Tactic To Silence Respectful Debate

Shorten’s Orlando Link An Unfortunate Ploy to Silence Discussion on Marriage

According to a Wikipedia article on the organisation, it is opposed to same sex marriage, euthanasia and abortion.

A recent comment on a post on the ACL Facebook page on abortion had this to say:
“If a life would have gone forwards without intervention then the intervention is an act of murder. Why all the protests about sharks when we remain silent about human lives lost every day. Shame and guilt perhaps?”

A spokesman said the ACL had invited all the candidates. Other confirmed attendees included Sandie O’Connor of the Rise Up Australia Party, David Kim of the Christian Democratic Party and Anthony Hanson of Mature Australia.

The forum will be held at the lobby group’s Eternity Church, at 490 Sulwood Drive, Kambah (not its Eternity House office in Deakin), between 7pm and 8.30pm tonight, and a spokesman told the RiotACT that all are welcome so long as they RSVP by 5pm today at http://www.acl.org.au/act_senate_meet_your_candidates_forum

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35 Responses to
Greens snub Christian Lobby election forum
chewy14 1:30 pm 22 Jun 16

Good. The ACL do not represent the majority of Christians.

Interestingly, the Greens do not represent the majority of environmentalists either. They should be a good fit with the ACL for promoting an ideal that they themselves don’t follow.

chewy14 1:18 pm 22 Jun 16

““Absolutely not. While I’m happy to speak with people of all political persuasion I will not legitimise an extreme fringe group,” Ms Hobbs said.
“We didn’t receive it in ACT to my knowledge but I don’t have time to fill a survey of a fringe group with bigoted extreme views.””

ahahahahaha.

The Greens party is worried about extreme fringe groups and bigots? I thought that’s where most of their support came from?

Perhaps they should rethink their support of certain organisations who regularly flout the law if they are in a reforming mood?

Richie 1:09 pm 22 Jun 16

I applaud those progressive politicians, like Australian Sex Party candidate Steven Bailey, who made the uncomfortable and courageous decision to front a conservative forum such as last night’s, hosted by the Australian Christian Lobby. I understand, but don’t agree with the decision of the Greens to boycott the forum.

Contemporary political discourse is becoming more polarised as each of us builds comfortable echo chambers of our own minds through social media, our social networks and our greater ability to customise our newsfeeds with perspectives that align with our own. Debate and discourse is increasingly stilted and based on assertions and conjecture, making nuanced, considered and evidence-based analysis increasingly rare. Debate is far too focused on winning through aggression rather on bridging points of view, building understanding and empathy, finding shared values and advancing our collective wisdom.

Steven Bailey knew his and the Australian Sex Party’s views were at polar opposites compared to the dominant perspectives of last night’s audience, but it demonstrates courage, integrity and a willingness to work collaboratively with all sorts. Fiona Patten, in the Victorian Parliament, has shown just how effective this can be, spurring-on the Labor Government to make numerous significant reforms including most recently today’s tabling of a bill to establish a framework enabling the legal operation of ride sharing services in Victoria.

Steven demonstrated a commitment to working towards a better more inclusive polity by attending last night. That would not have been achieved by boycotting. That alone is worthy of praise, regardless your political persuasion.

HenryBG 1:02 pm 22 Jun 16

pink little birdie said :

When it comes down to it, there needs to be a voice for the progressives in this country.

So you admit the Greens have been infiltrated by people who are excessively interested in fringe issues and social activism that has nothing to do with environmental conservatism.

Why should the *Greens* be the voice for the indoctrinees conned by 40 years of post-rational neo-marxist anti-social philosophies?

Nilrem 12:53 pm 22 Jun 16

gooterz said :

Good. The ACL do not represent the majority of Christians.

Are you a Christian?

Whether I am or not is irrelevant. I do know many Christians who both preach AND practice compassion, empathy and tolerance. Unlike the ACL, who continue to have a very disturbing obsession with the physical act of gay sex.

Mysteryman 11:56 am 22 Jun 16

Good. The ACL do not represent the majority of Christians.

Are you a Christian?

Here_and_Now 11:47 am 22 Jun 16

Typical Greens. Anything they disagree with is labelled “extremism” and “bigoted”.

These people were copping those terms regardless of whether the Greens are in play or not because it pretty much describes them.

‘Bigotry’ is a real thing; it’s not something made up just for you to feel like a special snowflake for disagreeing with the Green Party.

This isn’t a case where people who are homophobic or racist or religiously prejudiced or whatnot get to say ‘don’t call me a bigot because that’s not how I self-identify’.

madelini 11:42 am 22 Jun 16

Garfield said :

Typical Greens. Anything they disagree with is labelled “extremism” and “bigoted”. Talk about hypocritical. I wonder if Hobbs gets the irony of a member of the Greens labeling someone else a group of fringe extremists?

I’m looking forward to not hearing anything from her once she fails to get elected.

Fast-forward about 50 years and we can look forward to a marxist-infiltrated Greens taking power and doing far, far more about “fringe extremists” (aka, anybody who disagrees with them) than simply refusing dialogue with them.

The Greens have moved so, so far off the path of environmentalism it isn’t funny.
The christian idea that we are stewards of god’s creation and responsible for its conservation is perfectly in step with what should be a core Greens value.

But no, the Greens are far too interested in fringe non-envrionmental issues to do anything sensible about the environment. Why the obsession about homosexuality, abortion, encouraging illegal immigrants, and the targeting of children for gender-theory lessons?
What about the environment?

Actually, the Greens remain invested in environmental issues. Their core policies include delivering a new Environmental Act, investing in solar power, phasing out live animal exports, and protecting marine life (including the Reef). However, the Greens have grown from being a one-trick party and long ago overtook from the Democrats as the third party of interest.

By doing this, they had to redistribute their focus. Considering that the ALP is relatively conservative on a lot of issues, the Greens are at the progressive end of the scale and are pushing for policy that provides actual action. The “Christian idea that we are stewards of God’s creation” is actually not a concept specific to Christianity. Given that the Greens are our progressive party and that we have separation of Church and State in this country, it’s not surprising that they would seek to distance themselves from a party whose spokesperson said that marriage equality would lead to another stolen generation.

When it comes down to it, there needs to be a voice for the progressives in this country. There needs to be a group fighting for equality and for people to have autonomy over their own bodies that is not dependent on individual views (and yes, I am referring to abortion). If the Nationals weren’t in the coalition with the Liberals, there would be a noticeable far-right wing voice as well. As it is, the conservatives are currently in government, and the other large party is not as progressive as some would like Australia to be. That’s why they have broadened their approach from only focusing on the environment – they would never have become the voice that they are today if they had maintained such a narrow approach.

Here_and_Now 11:29 am 22 Jun 16

Good. The ACL do not represent the majority of Christians.

They really don’t. Or Australians, to highlight another third of their name.

Here_and_Now 11:27 am 22 Jun 16

Garfield said :

Why the obsession about homosexuality, abortion, encouraging illegal immigrants, and the targeting of children for gender-theory lessons?

No idea, but it’s true: the ACL are really, really obsessed with those. I’ve not heard them talk about much else.

dungfungus 10:54 am 22 Jun 16

Garfield said :

Typical Greens. Anything they disagree with is labelled “extremism” and “bigoted”. Talk about hypocritical. I wonder if Hobbs gets the irony of a member of the Greens labeling someone else a group of fringe extremists?

I’m looking forward to not hearing anything from her once she fails to get elected.

Fast-forward about 50 years and we can look forward to a marxist-infiltrated Greens taking power and doing far, far more about “fringe extremists” (aka, anybody who disagrees with them) than simply refusing dialogue with them.

The Greens have moved so, so far off the path of environmentalism it isn’t funny.
The christian idea that we are stewards of god’s creation and responsible for its conservation is perfectly in step with what should be a core Greens value.

But no, the Greens are far too interested in fringe non-envrionmental issues to do anything sensible about the environment. Why the obsession about homosexuality, abortion, encouraging illegal immigrants, and the targeting of children for gender-theory lessons?
What about the environment?

Thank God we have deep thinkers like you Henry to expose the Greens for what they are.

HenryBG 4:00 am 22 Jun 16

Typical Greens. Anything they disagree with is labelled “extremism” and “bigoted”. Talk about hypocritical. I wonder if Hobbs gets the irony of a member of the Greens labeling someone else a group of fringe extremists?

I’m looking forward to not hearing anything from her once she fails to get elected.

Fast-forward about 50 years and we can look forward to a marxist-infiltrated Greens taking power and doing far, far more about “fringe extremists” (aka, anybody who disagrees with them) than simply refusing dialogue with them.

The Greens have moved so, so far off the path of environmentalism it isn’t funny.
The christian idea that we are stewards of god’s creation and responsible for its conservation is perfectly in step with what should be a core Greens value.

But no, the Greens are far too interested in fringe non-envrionmental issues to do anything sensible about the environment. Why the obsession about homosexuality, abortion, encouraging illegal immigrants, and the targeting of children for gender-theory lessons?
What about the environment?

Mordd 9:43 pm 21 Jun 16

This is the right call by the Greens, and the Sex Party should be following suit.

Nilrem 8:54 pm 21 Jun 16

Good. The ACL do not represent the majority of Christians.

Mysteryman 5:10 pm 21 Jun 16

Typical Greens. Anything they disagree with is labelled “extremism” and “bigoted”. Talk about hypocritical. I wonder if Hobbs gets the irony of a member of the Greens labeling someone else a group of fringe extremists?

I’m looking forward to not hearing anything from her once she fails to get elected.

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