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ACT News

Same sex marriage: ACT Legislative Assembly debates laws

Date
Lyn Griggs, Ainslie. Click for more photos

ACT Legislative Assembly debates same sex marriage bill

Lyn Griggs, Ainslie. Photo: Rohan Thomson

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That's were we'll leave the live coverage. But we'll continue to keep you across the story today as supporters, commentators and those opposed react to the passing of the bill.

You can stay up to date via the homepage and you can read a wrap of how the debate unfolded here.

Thank you for joining us.

Lisa Cox: There have been tears ad hugs as marriage equality supporters celebrate the passage of the bill. Some have held up rainbow-coloured "thank you signs.''

Under a "pair'' arrangement, Liberal MLA Andrew Wall abstained to allow Ms Porter to leave the chamber.

Law professor George Williams says the ACT Marriage Equality Bill fills in the gaps not covered by federal marriage law, and so will authorise not only same-sex people to marry but also transgender and intersex people.

You can read his opinion piece here.

High Court awaits same-sex marriage legislation (Video Thumbnail) Click to play video

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High Court awaits same-sex marriage legislation

According to constitutional law expert Professor George Williams, the legal challenge to the ACT marriage equality legislation will be a question of federalism not human rights.

PT7M17S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-2vxuc 620 349

Tom McIlroy: Social media reaction to the bill's passing is coming thick and fast.

Actually that final vote was eight votes to seven, because Labor MLA Mary Porter had to step out of the chamber.

Lisa Cox: Supporters singing "love is in the air''.

And the historic same-sex marriage bill passes the ACT Legislative Assembly by eight votes to seven.

Lisa Cox: Mr Rattenbury says the government will continue to consider all the legal advice. Can we expect more amendments after the bill is passed?

Liberals are opposing a bid by Labor for last-minute amendments to be debated. Liberal Leader Jeremy Hanson says the 25 amendments should have been sent to the scrutiny of bills committee before being considered by the full chamber.

Assembly votes by nine votes to eight to give in-principle support for the bill. Now on to the detail stage of the debate.

Lisa Cox: The Assembly is now voting on whether to support the bill "in-principle''. Assuming the vote passes, they will then discuss the details of the bill.

 

Mr Corbell says "no one should believe the myth of separate but equal'', referring to segregation in the United States and apartheid in South Africa.

 

Mr Corbell is now outlining amendments designed to reduce the chances of the bill being declared unconstitutional.

Some marriage equality advocates believe more amendments are required to reduce the chances of the High Court throwing out the law.

Mr Corbell says the ACT law can operate concurrently with the federal Marriage Act.

"It is not a challenge to the Commonwealth's power to legislate for marriage.''

 

Mr Corbell compares the inability of same-sex couples to past discrimination against women. He points out that  women were long denied the right to vote.

"This demonstrates the absurdity of the situation we are in.''

Mr Corbell says the government is determined to push ahead with the reform.

''No legal contrivance will turn us from this purpose.''

Mr Corbell says Australia cannot be a civillised country if people were bound by laws that discriminated against them.

 

Labor MLAs Yvette Berry and Mick Gentleman have also spoken in support of the bill.

Attorney-General Simon Corbell is now summing up before amendments are discussed.

 

On the assumption that this bill becomes law - and barring a big last-minute surprise it will - it is heading for the High Court.

Federal Attorney-General George Brandis has confirmed the Abbott government will challenge their constitutional validity.

Of course, marriage equality advocates say a new report from Tasmania shows states and territories do have constitutional power to legislate for same-sex marriage.

Senator George Brandis.

Senator George Brandis. Photo: Steven Siewert

No further Liberal MLAs are expected to speak on the bill.

Labor MLA Mary Porter says the fact that that she has a gay neice, "Only adds to my determination to fight for this bill.''

Education Minister Joy Burch has attacked Liberal MLAs for voting against giving same-sex couples the right to marry.

"Today you have personally let them down.''

Labor MLA Chris Bourke is also speaking in support of the bill.

 

Deputy Chief Minister Andrew Barr has choked back tears while describing "the sacrifice and the struggle'' of  gay and lesbian Canberrans, their families and supporters.

Deputy Chief Minister Andrew Barr begins his speech.

Deputy Chief Minister Andrew Barr begins his speech. Photo: Rohan Thomson

Lisa Cox: Members of the public in the Assembly foyer and reception room cheer as Ms Gallagher concludes her comments and Deputy Chief Minister Andrew Barr, who is gay, prepares to speak.

 

Ms Gallagher says the law will be operational before the end of the year.

Interstate same-sex couples will be welcome to marry in the ACT.

Clergy will not be required to conduct same-sex marriages if this is contrary to their beliefs.

Ms Gallagher says the threat of a High Court challenge will not deter the government from proceeding with the establishment of a local same-sex scheme.

"That should not deter us, it doesn't rattle us and it doesn't change our path.''

 

Chief Minister Katy Gallagher.

Chief Minister Katy Gallagher. Photo: Rohan Thomson

Chief Minister Katy Gallagher has begun her speech by saying marriage equality is necessary to end discrimination against same-sex couples.

"It's a proud day for the government and I know for many across our community,''she says.

"We on this side of the chamber are prepared to challenge outdated legal notions and meet our responsibilities to the people we represent, to make sure that each and everyone of you is treated with recognition, equality and fairness before the law.

"These are the principles that have brought us into government, they're the principles the community  holds dear, they're the principles of ACT Labor and they are the principles of this bill.''

Tom McIlroy: We're seeing a lot of support on social media for the ACT's same-sex marriage legislation, but not everyone agrees on the reforms.

We'll bring you more reaction as it happens during this morning's debate.

Mr Rattenbury says if the marriage equality law is struck down by the High Court, "we will try again''.

He has quoted a constituent saying that instead of being a place associated with "fat cats'', the ACT should be "rainbow territory''.

Mr Rattenbury has received a round of applause after concluding by saying, "enjoy getting married''.

Speaker Vicki Dunne has warned members of the public in the gallerry not to interject and participate in the debate.

 

While the Assembly will decide whether this legislation gets up or not, we want to know your views. Tell us in the comments what you think of the legislation and the debate (but keep it respectful) or vote in our poll.

Poll: Do you support the ACT's same-sex marriage legislation?

Poll form
  1. Please select an answer.
  2. View results
Yes. It's about time same-sex marriage was legalised in Australia.

37%

No. I believe marriage is between a man and a woman.

59%

No. I back same sex marriage, but the ACT shouldn't be doing this - it's a federal matter.

4%

Total votes: 7759.

Would you like to vote?

You will need Cookies enabled to use our Voting Feature.

Poll closed 26 Oct, 2013

Disclaimer:

These polls are not scientific and reflect the opinion only of visitors who have chosen to participate.

The Australian Medical Students’ Association and ANU Medical Students’ Society have this morning praised the same-sex marriage bill, declaring marriage equality to be a health issue.

In a statement, Medical Students’ Association president Ben Veness said discrimination had negative health effects.
“Marriage equality is a health issue,” Mr Veness said.
 “Discriminatory legislation, such as denying people the right to marry, have been shown to have negative health effects, with significant increases in psychiatric disorders.
"Conversely, there is no health argument in favour of defining marriage as a union solely between a man and a woman.’’

Mr Rattenbury has urged people who oppose same-sex marraige to, "looking into your hearts, think of the people who want this change., who have been living with this discrimination.''

He has also criticised the Liberal Party for opposing the bill on the grounds that marriage is a federal matter.

"Frankly it seems like an excuse to avoid addressing the issue at hand. Today is the day to put a view on this. In some regards, I have more respect who are open in saying that they oppose marriage equality than I do for those who seek to hide behind process or jurisdictional arguments.''

Mr Rattenbury says the bill will put an end to a form of discrimination against same-sex attracted people.

"This is the beginning of governments in Australia saying 'no' to the historical institutionalised discrimination that relegates same-sex couples to a second-class status

"Denying equal marriage rights to same-sex couples is an afront to human rights which says, 'you're not allowed to express or formalise your love in the same way as other couples in our society.

"From today, through the passage of this bill, the ACT puts an end to this form of discrimination.''

 

Even our elite athletes are interested in today's debate. Well, Brumbies star and social campaigner David Pocock is.

Greens MLA Shane Rattenbury, who is a minister in the ACT Government, is now speaking in support of the bill.

He is being watched from the gallery by federal Greens Leader Christine Milne.

 

Mr Hanson questioned whether amendments to be moved by Attorney-General Simon Corbell would ensure the bill was constitutional.

"It is a leap of faith now to accept Simon Corbell's assurances that the amendments will make this bill lawful when he's spent the last few weeks arguing against the ned for any such amendments.

"The Canberra Liberals have a different view about the role of the ACT Legislative Assembly to the Labor Party and the Greens.

"We do not see the ACT Assembly as a vehicle to drive national agendas or social agendas, whereas the Labor Party and the Greens do. We are labor's smallest parliament in a small jurisdiction and we do not think a majority of one person in the ACT should change the definition of marriage for a country of over 23 million people.''

 

We're getting our first photos through of the viewing room - looks like there are plenty of people there.

Canberrans gather at the ACT Legislative assembly for the beginning of the same sex marriage bill debate.

Canberrans gather at the ACT Legislative assembly for the beginning of the same sex marriage bill debate. Photo: Rohan Thomson

Mr Hanson is quoting legal advice that the ACT bill is likely to be overturned by the High Court.

"This is not a responsible thing for the Assembly to be doing.''

He also says the bill "is a bandwagon hurtling towards a cliff.''

Mr Hanson is also quoting from marriage equality supporters who are concerned that the bill needs further amendments to strengthen the chances the High Court will declare it to be constitutional.

Liberal Leader Jeremy Hanson has now begun speaking on the bill.

"We believe that this issue belongs in the Commonwealth Parliament,'' Mr Hanson said.

"It is a federal issue and there are a wide-range of sound legal opinions that support that position.''

 

Liberal Leader Jeremy Hanson.

Liberal Leader Jeremy Hanson. Photo: Rohan Thomson

Green Shane Rattenbury is one of the MLAs backing the bill. Looks like he's excited to get underway.

The marriage equality bill was introduced into the Assembly by Labor Attorney-General Simon Corbell on the 16th of September.

Labor officially has a conscience vote on the issue, but all eight ALP members plan to vote for the bill.

Greens minister Shane Rattenbury also supports it.

The eight Liberal MLAs are expected to vote against the bill, although their are different views within the opposition partyroom about gay marriage. The Liberals argue that marriage laws are a matter for the Federal Parliament and should not be debated in the Assembly.

 

Assembly Reporter Lisa Cox reports the gallery is already filling up. Looks like it's going to be a busy day at the Legislative Assembly.

Lisa Cox: We just spoke to Andrew and Shane from Gympie in Queensland who are at the Assembly to watch the debate.

Andrew says, "We were touring around on holiday and we saw this was happening on the Facebook feed.

"It's out last day in Canberra, we've six hours before out plane heads out so we thought we would watch what happens.''

The couple, together for four years said, "It's a step in the right direction.''

"But it's like an onion,'' Andrew said. "There will be more layers to this.''

 

Good morning and welcome to our coverage of the marriage equality  bill in the ACT Legislative Assembly.

The 17-member Assembly is expected to pass during the next few hours, making the ACT the first Australian jurisdiction to permit same-sex marriage.

We’ll be providing gavel-to-gavel coverage.

The federal government believes the bill is unconstitutional and is planning to challenge it in the High Court of Australia.

But that hasn’t dampened the spirits of same-sex marriage supporters who have been lining up to get seats in the public gallery. Those who can’t find seats in the gallery will watch proceedings on a big screen in a function room, which has been decked out to resemble a wedding reception.

Related Coverage

***LOW RES IMAGE*****  ACT Legislative assembly- he same sex marriage bill debate. Simon Corbell (left) and Andrew Barr. Canberra Times pic by Rohan Thomson. 22nd October 2013.


_DSC2310.JPGClick for more photos

ACT Legislative Assembly debates same sex marriage bill

ACT Legislative Assembly debates same sex marriage bill on Tuesday October 22.

Just an ordinary couple hoping to witness history

For Canberra couple, same-sex marriage is 'simply a matter of human rights'.

Gay marriage: ACT law seeks to fill gap in federal law

The ACT is set to pass Australia's first same-sex marriage law. Its Marriage Equality Bill will be debated on Tuesday, and a Labor-Greens majority in the ACT Legislative Assembly means it is certain to pass.

Rush to save gay marriage bill

ACT government scrambles to amend bill in bid to safeguard law from being struck down by High Court.

Tony Abbott's gay sister Christine Forster engaged

21 Oct The Prime Minister's sister, Christine Forster, is engaged to her long term partner, Virginia Edwards - but admits that with debate raging over same sex marriage, "It might be a long engagement."

It's time for gay marriage: Kate Carnell

22 Oct Former ACT chief minister Kate Carnell says most Australians believe gay couples are entitled to equal rights and happiness.

ACT passes same sex marriage bill

22 Oct The ACT has been declared the “rainbow territory’’ after the Legislative Assembly passed a bill to establish Australia’s first same-sex marriage scheme.

Same-sex marriage is an oxymoron

22 Oct You cannot equate something that is essentially different, Monsigner John Woods writes.

Joy as ACT passes same sex marriage laws

22 Oct There was such universal joy and rapture in and around the Legislative Assembly at midday on Tuesday as the same-sex marriage legislation succeeded that one even half expected the usually scowling statue of Ethos (on the Assembly's doorstep) to be smiling for once.

"A blubbering mess": Couple celebrates historic bill

22 Oct At a Canberra club, four years ago, Kelly Butcher was “just doing some karaoke” when she met the love of her life.

Sort comments by:
  • So many people saying this is against God. If this is true, why don't you just pray to it and leave the real world to the rest of us. If it is against a God I am sure he could make a TV appearance or something. Or is that beyond its power? I notice all his publications are written by others. It didn't do anything about the Holocaust, but maybe this marriage equality issue will be what gets it upset.

    Commenter
    Chris
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 2:17PM
  • & this is where we have our nations capital??? No wonder we're on an obvious downward spiral of morality in humanity...

    Can anyone name 1 gay civilisation that has lasted past a generation? You can't, because there hasn't been one & never will be. Why? Because of the natural order of our species, it cannot happen.

    Commenter
    Stupid ACT
    Location
    waiting to close the closet door
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 2:01PM
    • Homosexuals are around 2% of every society. This Bill does not mandate you to marry someone of the same gender, it just allows you to do so if you choose to. No law will make you homosexual. Your parents really should have explained this.

      Commenter
      Chris
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 2:48PM
    • "Can anyone name 1 gay civilisation that has lasted past a generation?"

      EVERY civilisation has included gays and lesbians, in roughly consistent percentages, regardless of location, race, culture or religion. Gays and lesbians have managed to procreate just like everyone else, if that is your concern.

      Honestly, why are people so fixated on whether or not same-sex couples can bear children? The salient point here is that they are successfully raising children, whether their biological children or not, right now in our communities and that those families deserve the same protections in the law that are enjoyed by other families. Would you apply the same constraints and concerns to opposite-sex couples who cannot have their own biological children? It's totally irrelevant to make this part of the marriage equality debate.

      Commenter
      rivenrock
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 3:46PM
  • A great first step for Australia.

    As a married gay man and proud of it, I have to say this has been a long time coming. I was just recently married in Spain and it was one of the most Spiritual and moving days of my life. There were over 80 guests including my parents, my partners and my daughter. The wedding was done by a religious representative who combined both a Jewish and Catholic ceremony for us to make this marriage an event under god. No one had ever seen such a beautiful love filled day.

    Australia is still quite far behind the rest of the world and this is a shame. We need to show we are forward thinking and respect all people as supposedly this is what this country is about. Respect and equality for all. No matter your religion, gender preference, race or colour. We are all human and that's it.

    Finally I can say we are moving forward. Now for the rest of the states.

    Commenter
    Benzane
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 12:20PM
    • Congratualtions! I'm glad we're on our way to your marriage being fully recognised all over Australia.

      Commenter
      rivenrock
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 3:47PM
  • I just love how the religious have tried to hijack religious and political freedoms when in fact they are a cosequence of The Enlghtenment, a movement that rejected religion and rejected fundamentalism. Hooray for Voltaire, Frederick the Great, Catherine the Great and the writers of the Encyclopedia.

    Commenter
    JB
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 12:02PM
  • I'm all for equality, too. This discrimination between apples and oranges must cease!

    By the way, if marriage has nothing to do withh the conception of children, why do we forbid close blood relatives to marry? That's "discrimination" too, isn't it?

    Commenter
    Homophobe
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 12:00PM
    • If marriage has everything to do with the conception of children, why are they not required (or even mentioned!) in the Federal Marriage Act?

      Commenter
      Frank Earnest
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:47PM
    • We forbid marriage between siblings and lineal ancestors/descendents because it is a criminal offence. Being gay is not a crime.

      Commenter
      Mike
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:55PM
    • Mike, can you tell us why it is a criminal offence to do so? Just asking, as it to can now be deemed as discriminatory, can't it? It wasn't that long ago that it was a criminal offence to be homosexual either. What kind of can of worms are we continuing to open?

      Commenter
      Indeed
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 2:55PM
    • Did I say that marriage has everything to do with the conception of children? The Marriage Act does not specifically mention chidren for the obvious reason that since time immemorial marriage, whether love, arranged, polygamous, bigamous, incestuous or paedophilic, has been the union of one or more men with one or more women. Societies decided who could mate with who on the basis of with whom it was considered appropriate to breed. Our restrictions reflect this. Thus marriage belongs in the realm of sex, not love, and same-sex marriage is impossible

      Commenter
      Homophobe
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 4:59PM
    • No Mike, being homosexual is not a crime. Same sex marriage is. Marrying close blood relatives would not be illegal either if the act was repealed. That is not an argument for changing the definition of marriage.

      Commenter
      Homophobe
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 5:04PM
  • See, even the "debate" is thoroughly PC, eh? How about some facts? How about the truth?

    No, no, Snide, let's be fashionable instead! Let's buck tradition, decency, let's pretend these people don't commit disusting acts. Let's not bring up the fact that we used to execute them for their acts. Don't mention AIDS, let's forget statistics, let's let them indulge in their fantasies, eh?

    Fair dinkum! Pathetic and an insult to the MAJORITY ! !

    Commenter
    Snidery Mark
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:58AM
    • I couldn't agree more!

      Commenter
      Indeed
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 1:18PM
    • The MAJORITY of Australians want marriage equality.

      So basically you want the govenrment to withhold marriage from people whose sex lives you don't like. Will you also be campaigning for the government to withhold marriage from straight couples who practice sodomy? Also, you mentioned old laws we're forgetting. Racial intermarriage also used to be illegal. Should the government be withholding marriage from interracial couples.

      Feel free to meet us in 2013 any time you like.

      Commenter
      rivenrock
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 3:55PM
  • Such a blatant, shameless stunt by the ACT. The marriage power belongs to the Commonwealth under the Australian Constitution s 51(xxi). They know perfectly well that they don't have the authority to legislate on this matter and that the Commonwealth will have their legislation overturned. Gay people are being used as political pawns in the Liberal/Labor conflict.

    Commenter
    Ash
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:56AM
  • So, you cannot say "sodomy" at all in this debate, is it?

    Oh, reality, where is thy sting?

    Commenter
    Snidery Mark
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:54AM
    • I am a lesbian and I want to marry my loving partner of 20 years. What has sodomy got to do with it?

      Commenter
      Veronica the Voter
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 1:11PM
    • As shocking as this may be to you, sodomy is not confined to gay couples. Straight couples engage in it all the time.

      Commenter
      Jace
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 1:17PM
    • Jace, & you think everyone is ok with this? Just because some people do it, doesn't make it ok & right to do so.

      Commenter
      Indeed
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 2:58PM
    • No they don't, Jace. Some do, perhaps. Then, despite the lies peddled by the homosexual lobby, that (not homosexuality) was illegal too in the days when "the abominable crime of buggery" was illegal.

      Commenter
      Homophobe
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 5:08PM
  • I'm sick of government red tape and regulation holding up our economy.

    Can't see why Marriage Deregulation hasn't featured more strongly in the Abbott Government deregulation agenda.

    Commenter
    Morgan
    Location
    Canberr
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:52AM
  • I, for one, am glad that this debate is happening in the ACT. It sets an example for the rest of the states and territories to follow suit. It may pass...and it may get struck down in the high court...but at least a victory will get some air time so the rest of the progressive world will know that Australia is not completely backwards.

    Commenter
    Whatever your politics, it's about time.
    Location
    The progressive world.
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:51AM
    • So calling it "ptogressive" makes it right, does it?

      Commenter
      Homophobe
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 1:17PM
    • Yes, it does. The same way that women's voting rights, civil rights for African Americans and recognising the suffering of Indigenous Australians was also progressive.

      Commenter
      HSTeacher
      Location
      Brisbane
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 1:25PM
    • So civil rights, votes for women, etc, come about because somebody calls the moements "progressive", do they, HSTeacher? I'm glad my kids aren't in your class!

      Commenter
      Homophobe
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 5:15PM
  • "The ACT votes" LOL!!!!!! What a complete joke, you have greenie loving hypocrites who live in houses created by mining and driving cars created by mining backed up with the homosexual loving Gallagher who are deciding the vote, NOT the ACT. Several members of the Legislature do not speak for all Canberrans. I don't agree with letting homos have the same right to what has always been a law about a man and woman. Oh and Mr Corbell, you say everyone agrees with it. I am yet to find someone who does. Maybe they all work in the PS, they are the only ones stupid enough to agree with anything Labor has to say.

    Commenter
    zzREXzz
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:49AM
  • I have a gay nephew and am not against gays having legal arrangements at all. However all who support Gay Marriage had a mum and dad as a child. We all have a responsibility to protect the future rights of little children.
    This is all about a sickness in western society all who support it have no regard for children. When a 2 men can make a baby or 2 women sure lets have Gay Marriage

    Commenter
    Tony Gramhaam
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:33AM
    • I just don't understand this point of view. Gay people can have children via adoption, IFV, surrogacy, fostering already - all without being married. Likewise, being married does not mean that a couple has to have children, and having children does not mean that a couple has to get married. Marriage does not equal children, and children do not equal marriage. They're separate things. You're talking about 'protecting little children' to try and play with people's emotions and insinuate gay parenting is somehow dangerous, because you know your argument against gay marriage is a nonsense.

      Commenter
      MJ
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:15PM
    • Short-sighted and untrue. Firstly, same-sex couples, including those raising children, are more evident now, but they have always existed. Also, there are many family configurations that don't involve a mum and a dad. What about children raised by a mother and a grandmother, or by a single dad, etc? In determining what makes good parenting, the gender of a parent is irrelevant. What makes my parents good or bad for me has NOTHING to do with the fact that one is a woman and one a man.

      Also, while you are mounting your 'think of the children' defence, why don't you think about the gay children, who should be growing up with the assurance that they are seen as equal in their society, with the same right to dream of one day having their own wedding and legally recognised family? What about the children being raised by same-sex couples right now - who also deserve for their family to have legal recognition? What about the straight children who deserve to live in a country where equality is valued and supported in the law and where the bigotry of other generations is not reflected in the laws they live under?

      I support this law BECAUSE I can about the welfare of children, not because I don't.

      Commenter
      rivenrock
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:23PM
    • I agree! When an infertile man and an infertile woman can make a baby by natural means then we should allow infertile couples to get married ...

      ... oh, wait ..

      Commenter
      rob1966
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:55PM
    • Yes, rivenrock and MJ, homosexual couples, whether or not they hide behind the euphemism "gay" often raise chidren, and often do it very well. But they are households, not families. The children concerned belong to only one of them at best - unless you think babies really can be bought, sold, given away like puppies! And as for emotional arguments - isn't "poor me, I can't have my relationship legally acknowledged like everybody else's" rather emotional?

      Commenter
      Homophobe
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 1:24PM
    • @homophobe .. yes, just like adopted and foster children are only a part of a heterosexual "household" .. oh, wait ..

      Commenter
      rob1966
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 3:07PM
  • If truth be told isn't this entire same sex marriage debate just a grubby little attempt to get access to other people money , property and Superannuation funds by so called "Marriages" which will never produce children, the primary reason for marriage?.

    Isn't it just a giant fraud in pursuit of MONEY?.

    No wonder all the herds of Lawyers and 2nd rate conveyance clerks in Canberra are so supportive, more business for them..... money-money-money makes the World go around..

    At least lets be honest about it.. or can't you handle the truth?.

    Commenter
    Toys will get Played
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:15AM
    • yes, we need to do an audit of all marriages and void all those marriages between a man and a woman who have had no children. All those shame marriages between men and women who have no children add to the mockery made of importance and role of the civil institution that we call marriage.

      Commenter
      robbie66
      Location
      canberra
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:25AM
    • "which will never produce children"

      Many heterosexual marriages will never produce children, either by a twist of biology of by choice. Your point?

      Commenter
      Mike
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:28AM
    • Its not a fraud.Its an opportunity to create equality for straight and gay couples to Government entitlements and benefits.

      Commenter
      Kane
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:29AM
    • Yes, Robbie, the same simplistic utterences from those beyond reproach, eh? Keep up the name-calling and your cries of discrimination. Neither have any basis and neither have any documented support.
      Love how this minority is the authority on love, marriage and family, eh?

      Commenter
      Snidery Mark
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:33AM
    • Ooh, you old romantic!

      I can just imagine your own proposal... "Hey babe, why not marry me for the fabulous tax breaks! It's all about the money y'know."

      Commenter
      Frank Earnest
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:36AM
    • governments entitlements and benefits.

      Commenter
      Kane
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:38AM
    • I love anti gay marriage people, they always harp on about the "minority" forcing their view on the "majority" even though consistent polling in Australia has found a majority of the country is in favor of gay marriage. This makes those against it in the minority and they should follow their own arguments and stop inflicting their will on the majority in favor of gay marriage.

      Commenter
      JC
      Location
      Melb
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:47AM
    • TWGP: What a twisted perspective. You are really stretching any which way you can to find a reason to oppose equality, aren't you?

      Commenter
      rivenrock
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:09PM
    • Who is opposing equality? Where does the Marriage Act forbid homosexuals to marry under the same rules as everybody else? Is that not equality? Was not Abbot's infamous sister once married?

      Commenter
      Homophobe
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 1:28PM
  • God will judge these people harshly for their sin.

    Commenter
    Trust in Him
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:08AM
    • Which god? Which people? What sin? Marriage is a secular matter and homosexuality is legal. Please join the 21st century.

      Commenter
      Mike
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:30AM
    • They are already being judged. I know this for a fact!

      Commenter
      Snidery Mark
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:35AM
    • Guanyin will judge you harshly for your ignorance.

      Commenter
      Eren
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:37AM
    • How do you know?God might forgive.Judge not others ,you know.The mortal mind can never fathom the mind of God.

      Commenter
      Kane
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:39AM
    • Is this the "god" of the Bible? The "god" who directed his followers to kill the Amalekite babies? The "god" who allows and promotes slavery? The "god" who allows rapists to buy unmarried victims for 50 pieces of silver? The "god" who directs people to kill their children to see if they will?

      Commenter
      Bob
      Location
      Brisbane
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:52AM
    • To presume to speak for God is technically idolatory as it places you in God's image

      Commenter
      no_subject
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:57AM
    • Australia was founded on secularism...there is NO church of Australia, so leave God out of it. The churches are not expected to change anything in their practices or definition of marriage. This legislation is about marriage equality for the secular community. I am a heterosexual woman whose marriage was a civil ceremony...I also have no kids...should my marriage be void? I'm confused as to what your point is.

      Commenter
      Whatev
      Location
      Atheistown
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:58AM
    • Yes, she is already judging all those who are opposing 'god is love' - all those against marriage equality will be judged harshly for having separate but equal love rather than equal love - if you are a believer please remember all people are created in the image of go, not just the ones you like!!!

      Commenter
      robbie66
      Location
      canberra
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:03PM
    • If that is true, screw God. If he commands bigotry and inequality, screw God. He deserves neither our respect or interest. His views and demands are irrelevant to decent human beings.

      Commenter
      rivenrock
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:05PM
    • You don't know god my friend.
      God does not judge, only humans do.
      God is far beyond that ;)

      Commenter
      Benzane
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:33PM
    • A bit hard for something that doesn't exist to judge anything - least of all the happiness of a married couple.

      In any case, you lot claim your god as the most famous designer that ever existed, then in your next breath claim your god is homophobic .. really? That's no designer I've ever met!

      Commenter
      Rob1966
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:52PM
  • It is about time that people realised that marriage is a civil issue not a religious issue. Divorce and marriage are both granted by the state. Everyone should have to have a civil ceremony and then what ever they do with their god is a totally separate issue. And the christian/Jewish bible/tora is not the place to find models of marriage for people to be putting forward - a man marrying their sister who cannot become pregnant so he has it off with the help, multiple wives & concubines, rapists marrying their victims, slavery as long as you pay a fair price for the girl - all are the words of god - so please do not select which words of god you follow and which you ignore - you take it all or you take none of it. So leave religion out of who can get married!!

    Commenter
    robbie66
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 11:06AM
    • the State only gets its civil rights from God , if you really study it.

      Commenter
      Kane
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:28AM
    • Sorry robbie66 but the concept of marriage and the restrictions on it are from God and therefore "religious". The civil side of it is to see that its implemented as per God's instructions.

      Commenter
      Adrian of Dapto
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:43AM
    • People keep saying that this is about discrimination but it isn't, it's about what is right and what is wrong.

      No one has a right to do what is wrong.

      Commenter
      Adrian of Dapto
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:46AM
    • Kane ... the state got civil rights from God? Answer this: 1) How did slaves get civil rights when the bible is pro-slavery? 2) How did children get civil rights when the bible allows parents to kill them?

      Commenter
      Bob
      Location
      Brisbane
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:06PM
    • Exactly. Churches are voluntary organisations and as such, they can discriminate in their membership, etc. But governments must not discriminate in this fashion and should offer equality under the law without discrimination, no matter what opposing opinion bigoted citizens may offer.

      Commenter
      rivenrock
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:07PM
    • Kane and Adrian, which god? The concept of marriage predates Christianity and indeed predates all organised religion. Marriage exists in non-Christian religions. Atheists can get married too. Ergo, marriage has nothing to do with any god. Marriage is a civil institution.

      Commenter
      Mike
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:26PM
    • If you wish to invoke you "god" as the basis for anything, then at least have the decency to provide some credible evidence as to its existence.

      Until then, your "god" like unicorns sits in the fanciful fairy tale category

      Commenter
      Rob1966
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 12:49PM
    • Yes Mike, marriage, in many forms, pre-existed al of the modern religions at least. And it has always been the union of one or more males with one or more females. People of the same sex cannot marry.

      Commenter
      Homophobe
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 5:11PM
  • Queensland Premier Campbell Newman has said that if his bikie laws are struck down as unconstitutional, they will keep reintroducing variations of the law until 'something sticks'. Considering he's an LNP premier, I don't think the Liberal Party can have any problem with the ACT Government 'trying again' should this legislation be struck down.

    Commenter
    MJ
    Location
    Date and time
    October 22, 2013, 10:45AM
    • Its global, its from the Un ,Its compusory for the new world agendas of a one world government .Its groundwork ,placing the foundation stones for the architects to complete their building on .Its the circle of life.

      Commenter
      Kane
      Location
      Date and time
      October 22, 2013, 11:31AM
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