Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Plebiscite on gay marriage is a political ruse for delay and polarisation

A majority of the Australian population clearly support marriage applying equally to heterosexual and gay couples.  It is a basic human right.

However, some religious groups and a cohort of federal MPs (both Labor and LNP) oppose it for personal reasons.

There has been only 3 Plebiscites in the history of Australia:

  • 1916: military service conscription (defeated)
  • 1917: reinforcement of the Australian Imperial Force overseas (defeated)
  • 1977: choice of Australia’s national anthem ('Advance Australia Fair' preferred.)
John Howard changed the Marriage Act by parliamentary vote to make it "between and man and a woman" - proving that no plebiscite is required.

The plebiscite was proposed by Tony Abbot when he was PM as a tactic to delay legislative changes, and provide a platform for vilification and hate speech by the minority who oppose marriage equality.

Malcolm Turnbull is too spineless to stop this expensive, divisive, ineffective and unnecessary plebiscite.

It will be ineffective because the result is not binding on MPs.

Our MPs should just do what they are elected for: vote on a bill to change the Marriage Act.