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Old 2016-03-28, 23:28   #1629
Brian-E
 
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Here's a very impressive speech by a 15-year-old in Northern Ireland, one of the last remaining parts of the British Isles still not to have introduced marriage equality. He wrote to his member of parliament who voted against marriage equality to ask him why his same sex parents cannot get married, he has still not received a reply weeks later, and is now reinforcing his question with this eloquent video.
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Old 2016-03-31, 23:47   #1630
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian-E View Post
Australia is one of the countries where opening marriage to same sex couples is currently a hot political topic. I'd love to hear from any of our several active forum members from Australia about their take on this issue
The current state of play:
Same sex marriages performed in Australia are not recognised as marriage by the federal government.
Same sex marriages performed legally outside of Australia are not recognised as marriage by the federal government.

You can get a good overview of the Australian situation at the wikipedia page for our marriage act.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marria...28Australia%29

The main difference between Australia and the US in relation to the laws surrounding marriage, is that the marriage laws are controlled at a federal level. That is, the federal government defines the marriage laws. Although the states and territories can set additional marriage, and conflict, and the federal laws are the ones that win out.

The bit relating to same-sex-marriage can be seen in the section about the 2004 amendment. Prior to the amendment, the act did not specify that marriage in Australia was only 1male-1female, due it being assumed was the case anyway (common law).
This amendment had bipartisan support.

There will be party names here, so to put them into perspective. Our Liberal Party is right wing, and roughly equivalent to the US Republican Party. Our Labor Party are also slightly right wing, but quite a bit leftish on many issues. Our Greens party are very much left wing.

The recent push by Labor and the Greens (and some individuals within the Liberals), has been to recognise same-sex-marriage nationwide. Defacto same-sex relationships are however. The problem with defacto relationships, is that it's much harder to prove the relationship (no marriage certificate), and they have to live together for a certain period of time before defacto status applies.

At present:
The Liberals are bound by party agreement to vote against legislation allowing SSM.
Labor have a "conscience vote" on the topic. But party policy is to legalise it.
I'm not sure if the greens are bound or not, but they all vote for it anyway (and it's their policy)
There are also a swarth of independents who have mixed opinions.

As an aside: On topics where there is a bound vote for party policy, a Labor person crossing the floor will get the boot from the party. Liberals can cross the floor without punishment, but front benchers (people in cabinet), will likely be kicked from the front bench if they do.

Ok so Labor is trying to make the Liberals allow a conscience vote, but at the same time there are talks of them making their own votes binding.

In the house of representatives (lower house where the prime minister is), the Liberal-National coalition has the numbers to block the recognition of SSM.
In the senate, independents hold the balance of power.

The polling in Australia generally shows that SSM should be legalised.
Our current prime minister is intending to hold a plebiscite on it (unlike a referendum, which changes the constitution, a plebiscite only gains the publics opinion), and then says he will act based on the opinion of the full voting public.

Many people are saying that the plebiscite will just be a big waste of money, and that it will cause a lot of issues due to what will be extremely heavy and straightforward campaigning from both sides. Because of this, there's a real concern for the mental health of everyone who is not a straight male/female who identifies with their given biological sex.

It's pretty obvious that same-sex-marriage will eventually be legalised. It's a matter of when, not if. Anyone that things otherwise is deluded. So despite multiple (all?) state/territory governments being for it, as marriage is federally controlled, it requires a law change at the federal level, and so is unlikely to happen during the current term of government.

tldr: It'll happen, it's just not likely in the immediate future.
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Old 2016-04-01, 00:52   #1631
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0PolarBearsHere View Post
tldr: It'll happen, it's just not likely in the immediate future.
I'm thinking it will be a while. For one thing the gay panic/freak-out murder defense still exists in some places.

Continued push for Queensland Government to abolish 'gay panic' defence
Quote:
"That just seems such an archaic law and tantamount to enshrining bigotry and hate crime," he said.

The petition, calling for the "gay panic" defence in Queensland to be abolished, now has more than 237,000 signatures.

'It literally goes back to the Middle Ages'
Academics argue the changes are long overdue, and say they highlight larger problems with the concept of provocation.

University of Adelaide law lecturer Kellie Toole said South Australia and Queensland were the only states to hold onto this partial defence, which traced its origins back hundreds of years.

"It literally goes back to the Middle Ages, so not only when we had different views about male control, but also when there was a mandatory death sentence," he said.

"It just means that we're sending the wrong message in terms of homosexuality and that we're leaving open that possible argument that the reaction to a homosexual advance was so extreme because there was such a revulsion to that kind of homosexual advance that someone has a partial defence to murder."
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Old 2016-04-01, 07:55   #1632
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Quote:
Originally Posted by only_human View Post
I'm thinking it will be a while. For one thing the gay panic/freak-out murder defense still exists in some places.

Continued push for Queensland Government to abolish 'gay panic' defence
Queensland and South Australia are interesting.
Queensland has a unicameral parliament (no separate senate and house of reps), and at the moment has equal numbers of Labor and Liberal members (42 each), with three independents (who support the Liberal party in supply), and two from a minor party. Something is going to have to be pretty non-controversial to pass.
South Australia... well, ever since those pesky free settlers came to take potential land away from the giant British prison they've always liked doing things differently.
Australian states aren't always the best at sorting out these kinds of dodgy laws, so when the gay panic defence finally gets removed is anyone's guess.

As far as full recognition of same-sex-marriages, my guess is that the laws will get pushed through in Labor's first term the next time that the Labor and Greens get a majority in both houses. Which is likely to be a while.
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Old 2016-04-01, 11:32   #1633
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@0PolarBearsHere Thanks very much for the detailed information.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 0PolarBearsHere View Post
[...]The main difference between Australia and the US in relation to the laws surrounding marriage, is that the marriage laws are controlled at a federal level. That is, the federal government defines the marriage laws. Although the states and territories can set additional marriage, and conflict, and the federal laws are the ones that win out. [...]
It is, of course, the US which is unusual in this respect.
Quote:
[...]The polling in Australia generally shows that SSM should be legalised.
Our current prime minister is intending to hold a plebiscite on it (unlike a referendum, which changes the constitution, a plebiscite only gains the publics opinion), and then says he will act based on the opinion of the full voting public.[...]
I have been following the news from Australia to an extent and was aware of this plan by the current government to hold a plebiscite in 2017 (introduced immediately after the Liberal party ridded itself of the in-denial prime minister Tony Abbott) and the responding pressure to simply vote on the issue in parliament instead. What especially interests me is whether at the moment, while it is not clear whether the plebiscite will go ahead, there is already much campaigning on the issue aimed at the general population. Is it a hot topic? Do you see it on billboards in cities? Are people concerning themselves with the issue if they are at all interested in politics, or is it being swamped by other concerns about the economy, immigration, health, etc?
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Old 2016-04-01, 12:10   #1634
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian-E View Post
What especially interests me is whether at the moment, while it is not clear whether the plebiscite will go ahead, there is already much campaigning on the issue aimed at the general population.
The campaigning at the moment is more about politicians scoring brownie points, or as one member of the public recently commented on tv, "using [LGBT people] as political bullets".
Around the plebiscite the argument is essentially "The polls show the public wants it, so just legalise it" vs "Lets have a proper poll, and then act".
As I mentioned in my previous post. There are serious concerns that if the plebiscite does go ahead, it will get extremely vitrolous on both sides.

Quote:
Is it a hot topic?
Yes and no. It's one of the main regular political topics raised, but so are finance, health and education. For the general population, from what I observe, it's not something that is regularly discussed in day to day discussion, though neither are politics (more on this later).

Quote:
Do you see it on billboards in cities?
Not where I live. But they don't really have that many political billboards here unless they are advertising the politician themselves. I know in other places there have been though.

Quote:
Are people concerning themselves with the issue if they are at all interested in politics, or is it being swamped by other concerns about the economy, immigration, health, etc?
Well most people aren't all that interested in politics, and when they are it's generally only to criticise politicians. Recently former Prime Minister Tony Abbot, more recently current Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
Right now more people are concerned about the economy and health.

Having said that, the most recent political firestorm is around something called the "Safe Schools Program". Essentially it's a program for schools to make them safer for LGBT kids and to reduce bullying aimed at them.
You can get a general idea of the controversy by looking at that section of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Safe_S...tion_Australia.

Immigration is also a big political thing as you said. Courtesy of big oceans you don't really get "illegals" here in the same way you do in the USA, and any people that get caught catching boats to try and come here as refugees get sent off-shore until their claims are processed. Many people don't like this, as the locations are in places where the living conditions aren't great (essentially prison camps). Then there are others that call them "queue jumpers"1 and are ok with them being put there.

1Australia has a set number of immigrants per year. Both legitimate refugees and people moving in from other countries via immigration applications count towards this total. For each refugee accepted, one less of the others can be accepted.
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Old 2016-04-01, 13:50   #1635
Brian-E
 
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Thanks again.

The cross party support for the Safe Schools Program mentioned in that Wikipedia article indicates to me that Australia is right up with the most forward-thinking countries of the world. To my mind, tackling attitudes in schools and protecting LGBT students is the most urgent priority for any national government. The fallacious arguments from some, including fundamentalist Christian groups, against such anti-bullying programs are of course not unique to Australia by any means.
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Old 2016-08-07, 23:12   #1636
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a couple years too late for the discussion.
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Old 2016-08-09, 02:36   #1637
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chappy View Post
a couple years too late for the discussion.
no, for some countries/places still actual, unfortunately (I mean about jehovists and other species, including christians, who want to convert you to their beliefs).
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Old 2016-09-29, 01:31   #1638
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Default Kicking the habit: two former nuns married in civil ceremony in Italy

Just the headline of this article (above) was worth posting.
Quote:
Federica and Isabel’s love story was not that unusual, apart from one detail.

The affair, which culminated in a civil union this week in the Italian town of Pinerolo, began “slowly” according to their friend, Franco Barbero. The two had a lot in common, having both decided to devote their lives to charitable work.

They fell in love working at a rehabilitation centre for drug addicts, but there was just one hitch.

Both were already married to the Catholic church.

Federica and Isabel were Franciscan nuns when they met and fell in love, and have both since renounced their vocation and spoken out against the church’s position against homosexuality.
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Old 2016-10-04, 05:41   #1639
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The catholic church will stand on biblical precepts primarily defined in these verses.

Romans chapter 1:26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

Leviticus 18:22 “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.

Reading the history of the Roman empire gives an unusual perspective on slavery and homosexuality. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homose...n_ancient_Rome
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