‘This can so easily turn into emotive and angry dispute, I really don’t want that to be the case. Tonight is not about making a judgement on how people lead their lives but rather a discussion about the huge significance of this change in law.
Marriage for thousands of years, predating Christianity has been described as the union of a man and a woman, it has been a clear and absolute definition. Our nation’s laws are founded on Jewish-Christian roots. The state has embraced this idea of marriage as a fundamental pillar to the building of good society and the bedrock of the family unit. The bill now proposes that we throw out the core definition of marriage and replace it with an alternative definition.
As a Christian, I believe that marriage is not just a declaration of love, you don’t need to get married to do that, or even the best context to raise a family, although I do think that it is. But marriage has for believers of most faiths a deep spiritual significance, its why most of us feel so strongly about this, because it comes out of a deep sense of the created order.
We are not bigots, or prejudiced, or homophobic, or stuck in the past. As a christian I am deeply unsettled that we are altering the basic structure and order of society, which will have not just legal and social consequences but have a long term de-stabilising affect on the nature of society. This is about the redefinition of marriage, something which i don’t think is the prerogative of politicians to decide.
A warning to everyone. It will not stop here. Why not marriage between more than two parties? Why not marriage between members of the same family? Why can’t a father marry his adult son, or three men marry? Give it a few years and the dust has settled, teachers will be required to teach our children that same sex marriage is perfectly acceptable regardless of our personal conviction, and they will probably be sacked for saying otherwise, where is the equality in that. Where is the freedom of my faith? Even churches will be forced eventually either out of the legal marriage business altogether (like adoption agencies) or ridiculed because of their views.
This legislation has no public mandate, no party had it in their last manifesto. It is being rushed through parliament for political reasons without much real time to reflect on what we are doing. Its not about equality or fairness, equality already exists.
Marriage is a unique description of a man and woman committing their lives together – we should keep it that way.