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More opinion on gay civil unions

By GnT - 10 February 2008 41

The Canberra Times has an aricle today about an ongoing issue, gay civil unions. It appears the Federal Government is going to backflip on their promise to allow the ACT to govern itself, because it also made a promise to the Australian Christian Lobby that it would oppose civil unions.

I find it curious that in this debate we have the Australian Christian Lobby on one side and the Australian Coalition for Equality on the other side. After all, Jesus taught tolerance; he hung out with lepers and tax collectors, and taught people to take care of the disadvantaged and love their enemy. I would have thought most Christians would be in favour of equality.

The ACL also claims that “Most Australians and certainly all Christians, have simply had enough of the increasingly rapid erosion of traditional family values and ethics in Australia. We are rightly proud of a country that has built an enviable reputation for tolerance and quality of life and has so much potential.” I refute the claim of “all Christians”, unless they think that by supporting gay civil unions you cannot call yourself a Christian. I also think we should continue to build on our “enviable reputation for tolerance” by allowing everyone to join in a civil union.

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41 Responses to
More opinion on gay civil unions
Alan Shore 11:21 pm 10 Feb 08

I’m more concerned that people are turning to the Government to be the love police. What’s love got to do with the law?

I agree with diprotodon that the law should catch up with the reality of modern society. And that reality is that no one cares whether you’re married or single regardless of your sexuality. If we’re talking about the capacity of two people to love one another to the exclusion of all others, why can’t we leave it at that? Why do we have to get the Government involved? Why do we have marriage laws at all, when de facto law (if extended to all couples or even polygamous families) does just fine? If you love someone, you shouldn’t need a certificate from the government to justify it for you. Pure madness. It’s time everyone grew up, not just Christians.

Deadmandrinking 11:05 pm 10 Feb 08

I’m sick of the assumption that the marriage ceremony is completely based on sex. Do couple’s usually vow ‘to f-k, to blow and be open to your weird-ass kinks till death do us part.’?

The ceremony should be about love, between two people, through whatever may come bar divorce. That’s why girls cry and guys get pissed at weddings. What makes these ‘Christians’ think they’re the love police?

el ......VNBerlinaV8 10:57 pm 10 Feb 08

Jesus who?

diprotodon 10:51 pm 10 Feb 08

Its about time that the law caught up with the reality of modern society. Most of modern society today are comfortable with, or at least tolerate, same sex relationships. They are here to stay. Refusing to give them comparable standing with heterosexual marriages, or even de facto marriages, is wrong.

Alan Shore 10:38 pm 10 Feb 08

Ahh, I can’t tell you how much Christians love it when secularists tell them what Jesus taught. Always a winner.

Yes, Jesus taught tolerance, but He didn’t teach that sin should be sanctioned. Sure He’d hang out with a prostitute or a tax collector, but He wouldn’t let them believe they were doing the right thing. “Go, and sin no more.”

There are a whole host of good arguments in support of gay marriages or civil unions or whatever, but arguing with Christians about the legacy of Jesus Christ just ain’t one of them.

ant 10:38 pm 10 Feb 08

“Family Values”. WTF is that? Oh, that’s when one part of society decides it is going to help itself to everyone else’s taxes to support their lifestyle choice.

So gay people get to contribute their taxes to the almighty Family Values, but can’t participate if they want to. I hope Rudd hasn’t mortgaged us all to the Christian fascist fundamentalists.

Pandy 10:29 pm 10 Feb 08

There would be no homosexuality under an Islamic state. Bring it on.

sepi 8:49 pm 10 Feb 08

Marriage has evolved from being open to 12 year olds, people being promised to each other at birth, and women having to provide a dowry. If the ACL are so keen on traditions, do they plan to bring any of these back?

Current marriage is open to anyone, as long as they are of different gender – eg – people in their 80s who will not reproduce, disabled people – if fact anyone at all except two women or two men – this exclusion makes no sense to me.

But I do think that accepting Civil Unions is the way to go, and surely in a few years they can quietly become Gay Marriages.

gun street girl 7:24 pm 10 Feb 08

Deejay, to play devil’s advocate, where do you stand on heterosexual couples who marry who have absolutely no intention to have children? Should they too be excluded from marriage because they won’t reproduce?

VicePope 6:09 pm 10 Feb 08

As my tag suggests, I am a person with a religious affiliation. The Australian Christian lobby does not represent me, or my views or the views of a preponderance of the overtly Christian people I know. In fact, I do not know anyone who draws his or her position on social/political issues from the ACL.

There will always be people whose sexual orientation is to their own sex, and it’s naive to think otherwise or to think that this can be changed by an act of will. It just is, and the world is richer for the variety. The gay/lesbian people I know are not out to convert others, and most of them are in stable, loving, monogamous relationships. If society denies them the chance to be openly in a relationship, it says that there is something wrong with their orientation and, consequently, their personalities. That would be an unfortunate message.

I am totally unworried by single sex civil unions and, frankly, I would have no problems calling them marriages or attending any to which I was invited. I fear Kevin07 may have wimped out.

scumdorg 5:49 pm 10 Feb 08

The ACL are simply miffed that they are no longer inside the tent calling the shots anymore. They are on the outside looking in and their press release shows that they are in denial big time.

toriness 5:48 pm 10 Feb 08

My ‘couldn’t agree more’ refers to GnT’s post.

toriness 5:47 pm 10 Feb 08

Couldn’t agree more. It seems just a little selective (and that’s the kindest word that can be used) when ‘Christians’ quote, and rely on in literal terms, some parts of the Bible damning homosexuality, and then dismiss, or claim them to be ‘not meant to be taken literally’ other parts of the same book.

I also find it bizarre to be single out the ceremonies aspect of the legislation as being problematic – when marriage ceremonies, whether held in a church or a garden or wherever, are NOT essential or key in forming a legal marriage – it is the signing and witnessing of the marriage certificate which legally forms the marriage….sound a little bit like registration, anyone?

deejay 5:43 pm 10 Feb 08

For my part, I am a Christian. I don’t want marriage for gays and lesbians, but I do want civil unions. Here’s my reasoning:

1. Stable families are to the benefit of societies. That’s true of all types of stable families. They result in increased residential stability and social roots, reduced crime, yadda yadda yadda. Legal incentives to promote stability in families are valid, and in the case of interdependence in matters of insurance and super, only fair. Even if it were preferable for a gay or lesbian person to form a heterosexual union (and I have my doubts about the stability of that arrangement) the likelihood of it happening just to gain benefits is generally low, so there is no gain by withholding those benefits and some gain by giving them. Hence my support for civil unions.

2. Civil unions protect families from unfriendly outsiders who happen to be related by blood, by providing the chosen family with a higher claim. Unfriendly blood relatives are very common among gays and lesbians; civil unions provide protection.

3. Marriage as a heterosexual institution has an ancient history. Anthropologically and religiously (across all religions), ritual marriage is tied to reproduction and physical complementarity. I don’t think we have the right to re-write that when there is a perfectly easy alternative in the form of civil unions (with their own form of ceremony if desired) that accomplish the same without trampling on that heritage.

Some may accuse me of trying to have my cake and eat it too – that is fine. As a Christian I do not have any issue with the State recognising gay and lesbian unions. I would prefer it was done so without using the word marriage but that is as conservative as I go on the matter.

el ......VNBerlinaV8 4:40 pm 10 Feb 08

The Australian Christian Lobby can go and f*** themselves as far as I’m concerned. They speak for no one but their own bigoted selves.

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