The Good. The Bad. The Asinine.

And that’s what it’s all about

Every now and then, a single event manages to capture everything this blog is about. Today’s National Marriage Day Rally was one such event. Let’s start with the good news.

The Good
A Galaxy poll, released today, showed that not every religious person is an irrational homophobe. In fact:

53% of Australians who identify as Christians support same-sex marriage, while 41% oppose.

Not too shabby at all!

Even more encouraging are these words from actual priests:

  • Today in Australia we all live in a secular non discriminatory society. Churches and other spiritual institutions exist within this society. It seems to me that in a secular and non discriminatory society gay couples should be as free to marry as any other human couple. If people wish to be married within a religious or spiritual institution’s framework then they should accept the rites and rules of that institution. However it is the state that legitimises all marriages.
    – Rev Bill Crews (Uniting Church Minister, Sydney)
  • How can I, a heterosexual who’s been very happily married for 50 years, tell anyone else they don’t have the right to form a loving, committed, lifelong union and enjoy the fruits of marriage as I have done? Marriage is not a club to be restricted to some. Like the Gospel, it is a blessing to be shared.
    – Rev Rowland Croucher (Baptist Minister, Sydney)
  • When a couple want to be part of the institution of marriage, when they fully accept the same rights and responsibilities of marriage and treat marriage with the respect it deserves, why should they NOT get married? As a Christian minister, I believe that marriage is under threat from many angles, but also believe that recognizing same-sex unions will help return marriage to its rightful place in society.”
    – Rev Matt Glover (Baptist Minister, Melbourne)
  • Access to marriage, a public expression of commitment and love, is an essential part of being human and an inalienable right. As Christians we need to support those who are excluded and challenge those who through exclusion dehumanise and discriminate. I urge you to join the campaign to welcome our GLBT friends to express their love and commitment to each other through this special rite.
    – Rev Roger Munson (Uniting Church Minister, Canberra)
  • From a Christian point of view, marriage is an institution designed to serve two social needs:
    1. contribute broadly to social stability
    2. provide a stable environment for the nurturing of children.
    If this is the case then the only questions Christians need to concern themselves with when it comes to the issue of gay marriage are these two:
    1. Would gay marriage lead to greater social stability?
    2. Would a married gay partnership be likely to provide a more secure environment for the nurturing of the children of a gay couple than an unmarried one?
    I think the answer to both these questions has to be ‘yes’.
    – Fr Dave Smith, (Anglican parish priest, Sydney)

Awesome.

And, of course, there must be some Christians in the Greens. And the Greens are all over it.

The Bad
Unfortunately, however, it’s not all preachers and Greens. Over at the National Marriage Day rally:

  • Bob Katter was on hand to lend his trademark air of dignity to the occasion, and remind us that “Gay is one of the most beautiful words…no-one should have the right to take that word off us”. Apparently the word is much more beautiful than his hat, which he did take off himself, and then auction. Some cashed-up moron bought it for $2,700. Way to contribute, Bob.
  • Bob’s partner in whine, Barnaby Joyce, helpfully informed us that “If someone wanted to introduce legislation calling ‘camels’ ‘horses’ that would be equally as ridiculous”, apparently unaware that his mate Bob has already drafted an act to that effect.
  • Finally, visiting American Rebecca Hagelin threw in the usual crap about same-sex marriage forging an unstoppable path to incest and paedophilia.

Which brings us to…

The Asinine
And wouldn’t you know it, it was the Australian Christian Lobby who delivered, yet again:

The Australian Christian Lobby dismissed as absurd that the majority of Christians would approve of same-sex marriage as indicated by a Galaxy poll today and trumpeted by the Greens.

“Certainly my work with Evangelical, Catholic and Orthodox churches leaves me in no doubt that the great majority of their adherents don’t support same-sex marriage,” said Mr Wallace, the Lobby’s Managing Director.

Apparently Galaxy could have saved a lot of money by just asking Jim what the average Christian thinks.

Still, at least he seems to recognise that church attendance is a better measure of the nation’s religiosity than the box you ticked on the Census:

“I think a simple additional question on the poll that determined if the person actually attended a church might have made the result more informative,” he said.

Sure it would have, Jim. If only regular churchgoers were counted as Christian, then maybe Galaxy would be saying that only 5% of Christians support same-sex marriage. Unfortunately for you, however, it would also mean that only 8.8% of Australia is Christian.

Your call, Jim.

Category: Asinine, Bad, Good, Homophobia, Politics, Religion

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