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Changing marriage is not inevitable

By Lyle Shelton - posted Thursday, 2 April 2015

Despite Gavin Fernando’s assertions to the contrary on last week, so-called “marriage equality” is losing its air of inevitability.

In the past few weeks, we have begun to hear alternative voices in the long-running debate to change the definition of marriage.

Suddenly high profile gays such as Dolce and Gabbana are speaking up for children’s rights to be raised by their mother and father.


And children raised by same-sex couples, like Heather Barwick, are talking about the “ache” in their hearts caused by the absence of a father.

The debate is shifting from the desires of adults to the rights of children.

The vitriolic and intolerant backlash against Dolce and Gabbana for even raising the rights of the child is causing many people to wonder why the redefining marriage lobby is so touchy about opinions which don’t suit its political agenda.

Those seeking to redefine marriage were hoping the Greens and Senator David Leyonhjelm would succeed in their push to have the Liberal Party grant a conscience vote on redefining marriage last week.

The redefining marriage lobby organised 13,000 emails to the Liberals urging a conscience vote be granted. Recognising that a well-organised push was on, ACL rallied pro-marriage supporters and 20,000 responded in just three days.

Leyonhjelm has now withdrawn his “freedom to marry” bill for the time being after his allies in the Liberal Party declined to speak up as planned at last week’s party room meeting in Canberra.


Fernando attacks Social Services Minister Scott Morrison’s reasons for not supporting a redefinition of marriage.

Morrison, like Dolce, Gabbana and Barwick, believes children should wherever possible be known, loved and raised by their parents.

Legislating a new definition of marriage requires children to forfeit a parent. Governments are required by international and domestic law to always act in the best interest of the child and so it is quite appropriate that the Liberals have a party position to vote as one on marriage.

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About the Author

Lyle Shelton is Managing Director of the Australian Christian Lobby based in Canberra.

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