Guest Post – Louisa Wall

Yesterday I emailed Louisa Wall, the MP who is best known for her stance on marriage equality, asking her if she would like to write a guest post. Louisa and I are on different sides of the political spectrum on many issues, but on the same side of this one. I am grateful that Louisa has the ability to look beyond our differences and agreed to provide a guest post.

I am happy to publish guest posts on from any politician from any political party, and will print their post in its entirety. I may comment if I disagree, but the original post will not be edited in any form.

Readers should feel free to comment as usual, though please remember that courtesy should be extended to guests. Reasoned, sensible arguments from any side of the debate on marriage equality are welcome. Inane abuse is not.

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - JUNE 19:  Labour repre...

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President Barack Obama’s support for same-sex marriage will hopefully inject momentum into the issue here. As Chair of Rainbow Labour Caucus I have been working on a Member’s bill amending the Marriage Act that I hope will be endorsed by Rainbow Labour ¬†and our Labour Caucus and placed in the ballot.

Our current Marriage Act does not define marriage as a union between one man and one  woman and that is a distinction that we have from other countries like Australia and the United States. The Quilter majority decision of the Court of Appeal in the 1990s essentially  passed the issue of same sex marriage back to Parliament because the Court believed the 1955 Marriage Act contemplated marriage in the traditional sense and any change that society wished to make should be done by legislation. The Court acknowledged the Act  was discriminatory but justified it by virtue of the time that the Act was passed. Justice Thomas however expressed a minority view that the 1955 Act was discriminatory and could not be justified under the NZ Bill of Rights Act. However he accepted that the Bill of Rights Act could not strike down the discriminatory nature of the Marriage Act Рin law they have the same status.

Our response in Aotearoa was the Civil Union Act 2004 which established civil unions for same-sex and opposite sex couples. I believe the experience of civil unions has resulted  in what I see as a greater acceptance of same-sex marriage today. Civil unions are a validly accepted institution amongst most people and one used by heterosexual couples as well. Essentially same-sex marriage along with same-sex adoption remain the issues that need to be addressed before we can say there is substantive equality in Aotearoa for the rainbow community.

Marriage for some same-sex couples is the preferred way for them to commit themselves to another person. For others, both same-sex and opposite sex, their commitment is best expressed by a civil union. Currently opposite sex couples can exercise either option but same-sex couples can only avail themselves of a civil union. That is discriminatory and breaches the basic human rights of a group of people based on their sexual orientation.

What I admire about President Obama’s public position is his ability to acknowledge that at a personal level, given his religious beliefs, it is not something that sits too comfortably with him but, at a moral level, and bearing in mind a commitment to equality and embodied ¬†in the constitution of the USA he cannot oppose same-sex marriage. I believe we all need ¬†to consider this matter in terms of equality and not our personal beliefs. In doing that no rational person could in my view oppose all people, regardless of their sexual orientation, having the same legal rights and ability to choose for themselves how they express their commitment and love for another person.

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  • Pete George

    Excellent post, sums things up very well.

    I’m collating MP positions and comments on marriage equality from news reports, blogs, FB and twitter, and responses to email responses. Any more please let me know.

    http://yournz.org/2012/05/10/mps-on-same-sex-marriage/

  • Jman

    Since marriage and civil union are the same thing from a legal perspective (or should be if they aren’t) the debate simply comes down to the meaning of the word “marriage”. Homosexuals want to use the word “marriage” to describe their relationships when throughout human history it’s meant something different. I’m against this from a historical perspective – I don’t believe in changing the meaning of words to suit the current vogue. I say gays need to come up with their own word. If they don’t like “civil union” then come up with something that sounds trendier.

    It’s clear to me the reason they want the word is because of the level of respectability that the word marriage connotes. Then the arguments they put forward in favor of this position is how much heterosexual people have disrespected marriage (Britney Spears etc). To me it’s a dishonest argument.

    • http://www.whaleoil.co.nz Whaleoil

      They aren’t the same legally, because people in a civil union aren’t allowed to adopt. Whether they are heterosexual or homosexual.

      • Jman

         Gay adoption is a separate issue. If gays are attempting to legalise gay adoption by the backdoor method of gay marriage then that is equally dishonest.

      • http://www.whaleoil.co.nz Whaleoil

        The whole adoption issue is related to civil unions. A hetereosexual couple in a civil union are not allowed to adopt children and that is wrong. It has nothing to do with sexuality and everything to do with the fact that civil unions are marriage lite, less than a marriage.

      • Jman

        ¬†ok so you’re saying the reason we must allow for gay marriage is because then gays can adopt children. If the aim is to allow for gay adoption then change the law to allow for gay adoption. Simple. And marriage still means what it’s always meant. Is everyone happy now?

      • Random66

        Just a thought WO and you don’t have to answer, the biggest decision my husband and I have ever had to make was who to leave our children to in the event we both died. This was incredibly hard because we honestly didn’t know who would love them as much as we do, and who would put all self interest aside and handle the money we would leave them in a way that was right and honest. We would want a mother who was kind and caring, who baked cookies, worried about school camp and who would listen to our girls when there was boy problems and who knew sometimes a hug was all that was needed. Then we would want a father who was like my husband, solid, strong, decent, hardworking and who would teach our son how to become a man and to teach him the difference between right and wrong. I know you have mentioned you have friends who are gay, would you leave your chidren to them in the event of your death? Would they rasie your children the way you and your wife would hope for them to be raised? If so, then perhaps that would be the most compelling argument I could hear today

      • Apolonia

        Gay people can adopt already in New Zealand, they just have to do it as individuals.

      • Richard29

        In response to Random66.
        My wife and I have a daughter Рin the event of our premature death we have planned in our will that my sister and her female civil union partner would gain custody and raise our daughter in preference to my brother and his wife or my sister in law and her husband. 
        This is because we believe they would be the best parents and raise our daughter in the way my wife and I would want her to be raised, with unconditional love and total acceptance as one of their own.

      • Random66

        Richard 29. Nice. I always thought love was the ingredient that was most needed as well. I’m going to go all churchy on you and quote 1Cor 13:13 “And now these three things remain; faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” If I may I would like to quote the biblical definition of love 1Cor 13:4-7.

        “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

        It is my personal view if a person can tick the above boxes then they would make a great parent (sexual orientation aside).

    • CommonSense404

      Jman – I think you make the point very well by getting to the bones of what legal status marriage confers vs civil union. I note Whale’s comments regarding adoption being a primary difference. Are there any other differences (from a legal status perspective) or is the adoption issue the only difference?

    • Misanthropic Curmudgeon

      Homosexual marriages predate any (reglious) notion of man-and-woman exclusitivity (and indee the dominant religions themselves)

      When the religious people realise that their religion is the one that has co-opted the notion of marriage, then we’ll be one step cloer to a free and and equitable society

      • CommonSense404

        MC – you state that as fact. Can you reference the evidence that supports this view (that homosexual marriages predate any religious view of marriage)?

      • Misanthropic Curmudgeon
      • Rodger T

        Excellent post MC, unfortunately the religious really don`t want to know anything other than what fits their worldview.

        When same-sex marriage was a christian rite

        http://anthropologist.livejournal.com/1314574.html

        I have emailed this link to Whale, hopefully he will feature it.

      • Rufus

        “Excellent post MC, unfortunately the non-religious really don`t want to know anything other than what fits their worldview.”

        There, fixed that for you.

    • Wade

      If we have two drinking fountains fixated to a wall. Both fountains are the same brand and in the same condition, and they stand right next to each other. The water going to those fountains comes from the same pipes and is only split just before reaching the fountain. And then above one of the fountains is a sign saying “Whites Only” and then above the other fountain “Colors Only”, is that OK? Even if the water fountains are exactly the same, why do we go to so much effort to split people based on their differences?

      What about an inner city bus. With one side being for whites, the other side for the rest. In reality it makes no difference to which side of the bus you sit on, but why try and find differences in people?

      • Rufus

        ¬†you’re confusing genetics with behaviour.¬† Difference.

  • Tony

    I have no problems with gays being able to have civil unions. However, not with marriage unless churches are free to decline administering the marriage.

    1. The phrase “gay marriage” is an oxymoron; the definition of “marriage” involves a union only between a man and a woman, as a web search on this basis will demonstrate.¬†

    2. This definition of marriage is derived from religious books such as “the Bible” which sets out the basis for marriage being between a male and female.

    Therefore, if accepting gay marriage requires churches to go against their fundamental beliefs on the meaning of marriage based source from which the definition is derived, then the law would be oppressive. I wouldn’t object to such a degree if churches had the freedom to decline to perform “gay marriages”. I also wonder about the rights of gays to adopt children. While I can appreciate the fact that gays shouldn’t be discriminated against in this respect, the major concern has to be for the children. It seems to me that children in this situation are likely to be taunted and bullied at school for having “two mums” or “two dads” etc, which could be very difficult for children in this situation.

    • Kosh103

      Why do we need to call it gay marriage?

      If everyone is free to marry then its just marriage.

      And if you are going to use the Bible as the grounding for marriage – I suggest you actually go and learn what it really says.

      • Se√°n

        “Why do we need to call it gay marriage?”- Because that is what it is when the couple are of the same gender.¬†

      • Kosh103

        Ok Sean so from here on in we must call marriage between a man and woman hetrosexual marriage because thats what it is.

    • Misanthropic Curmudgeon

      As I have just replied to Jman, homosexual marriages predate any (reglious) notion of man-and-woman exclusitivity (and indeed the dominant religions themselves)This is soething that many (religious) opposer to gay marraige dont (or wont?) see or accept

      • Tony

        And you still haven’t provided any reference for this, as was requested above.

      • Misanthropic Curmudgeon
      • Ddduble

        True. Gay marriages were happening¬†throughout¬†the ancient world including in the early¬†Christian¬†church and also with the American Indians. The Church was far less interested in the supposed “sanctity of marriage between a Man and a Woman” than they became when they saw a way to make a buck….or are today.

    • Wade

      Are you suggesting that people from a religion other than Christianity, or people with no religion what so ever not be able to marry aswell?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OK7Y7PCSTJ27RCKZ2MGRSAYCTE NEIL

      A website search doesn’t “solve” anything Tony – if you look at Wikipedia (one of the most popular sources these days) you’ll find what we actually seem to be referring to here is more the western version of what a marriage is, try reading this and see if it helps you

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marriage

  • Johno1234

    … and that is a travesty. However IMHO that’s a problem with the adoption legislation rather than marriage legislation. I agree with Jman that civil union should have equal legal status to marriage in all respects. Changing the meaning of the word ‘marriage’ is a sideshow and is simply that: revisionist alteration of the meaning of a word to suit our modern standards.¬†

  • Se√°n

    Juan is correct. Either homosexuals come up with a new word for their ‘unity’ or then I suppose normal people have to come up with a new word for marriage.¬†

    • Kosh103

      Being gay is normal. Being homphobic isnt.

      • Se√°n

        Maybe you don’t realise what gays do for pleasure Kosh.¬†

      • starboard

        …no its not kosh. Putting your penis in another mans rectum is far from normal. I know of a Doctor who can fix your abnormality. Would you like his number?

      • http://www.whaleoil.co.nz Whaleoil

        Starboard, to quote David Farrar http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2012/05/obama_on_gay_marriage.html#comment-966579
        “Lesbians don’t tend to do sodomy. Yes they may use strap ons, but if they do they tend to do vaginal penetration. Plus many lesbians do not use strap ons at all but just do oral sex or mutual masturbation.As for gay couples, not all gay couples do sodomy either. And as around a third of heterosexual couples have had anal sex, most sodomy actually occurs between a man and a woman. So most sodomite marriages are heterosexuals.Less common is pegging where a heterosexual couple have anal sex, but the woman uses a strap on, on the man’s anus. There is little data on the¬†prevalence¬†of that, but they also are heterosexual couples”

      • starboard

        would you like the Doctors number as well Whale ?

      • Kosh103

        Sean, perhaps you dont know what many hetros do for pleasure.

        Being gay myself I am well aware of what I do for pleasure.

      • Kosh103

        Oh starbaord you tiny minded fool.

        Not all gays do that, just as not all hetros dont take the misses up the arse. Theres a reason its known as catholic contraception.

        And as for the Dr – Im fine, but you need one for your mental illness.

      • Johnrach

        I never thought I would see the day when WO and Kosh agreed…

      • Bob

        Being homophobic (ie: repulsed by homosexual activity) is also normal. Lots of us were born this way. Can’t help it. Get used to it Kosh, and show a little tolerance and appreciation for diversity.

      • Kosh103

        Bob, being homophobic is a mental illness – illnesses are not good and need to be cured.

      • Ddduble

        True…¬†Homosexual¬†behaviour occurs in over 1500 hundred species and counting….religiously inspired bigoted hate occurs in only one…so which is more Natural and normal?

      • Rufus

         Dduble, I call bullshit on that.  Anyway, so is necrophilia, eating your spouse, pack rape, the strong eating the weak, etc. 

        How far do you want to take your line of reasoning?

        You sound a lot like Kosh Рthat was an almost word-for-word quote of his sometime back. 

        Kosh, are you posting under different names again so it looks like you have some friends…?¬†

      • Kosh103

        Rufus, I have never posted on here under any other name. I dont run from my comments.

        And while you may call bullshit –¬† its still a fact that homosexuality occurs in a vast number of species on earth. Being a homo is as natural as being a hetro.

        Being a homophobe is a mental illness.

    • Bunswalla

      I call double bullshit on the “1500 hundred species” that homos say practice homo-ness. I take it you really mean 1,500 secies and not 150,000 which is what you wrote, clearly too stupid to even articulate numbers correctly.

      Name these species and FFS don’t point me to the lunatic’s last refuge, wikipedia. Anyone can (and does) write any shit they want in there – just check out the definition of Santorum.

  • Andrei

    On one hand the ruling elites are wringing their hands over  the children supported by welfare whose fathers do not take responsibility for them

    And on the other hand they continue to rewrite the meaning of the institution – “marriage” that came into being to ensure that the fathers of any child born to a women took that responsibility.

    I cannot believe how out of touch with reality our ruling elites have become

    • Rodger T

      Don`t let reality burst your bubble , sad deluded Andrei, you keep worrying about satan and keeping the popes coffers full.
      Let the grown- ups deal with the day to day issues of our times.I bet the priests have conveniently forgotten to tell you about this christian rite from the past,http://anthropologist.livejournal.com/1314574.html

  • Dave

    On this issue. ¬† ¬† ¬†I am not qualified or well read on the subject, but if a couple in a civil union, can indeed prove, they have the capacity and desire to raise a child in a “proper” manner (whatever that is) then they should have that right and privilege of adopting children. ¬† ¬†

    FFS, take a look at the media recently, we have enough kids neglected and abused or abandoned by so called straight or married parents, who should not be allowed to care for a cockroach. ¬†¬†On a separate issue…..Congratulations to Whale for allowing the Guest Posts, and for publishing them unedited. ¬† ¬†This is indeed a rare event these days. ¬†¬†I for one, get a lot out of the articles, as well as the subsequent posts/debate. ¬†Thanks!!

    • Se√°n

      A-ha. Correlation and causation and all that. So now allowing two gay men/women as parents will fix all this ? Right-o, a few media reports to the contrary will surely justify this. Yep, sure….Wake up.

      • Dave

        Sean. ¬† ¬†Read my entire post idiot. ¬† the words…… ¬† Capacity, Desire…. Proper.
        I also started by saying, I’m not qualified or well read on the subject. ¬†

        But equally,¬†I’m not bigoted enough to shut out negativity around the issue. ¬† I believe a lot of Gay men/women could do a hell of a lot better jobs raising kids than some of our less than ideal so called hetro parents! ¬†Final point, where did i say it would FIX anything…… ¬†

      • Kosh103

        Keeping in mind the number of child abuse that occurs in hetro homes¬†–¬† ca you point to even half the number of cases in hetro homes where children are raised?

        Come on Sean, put your money where your mouth is.

      • Dave

        In reply to Kosh.

        Once again Kosh, I agree with you in principal. ¬† Proving it will be hard, I’m not sure there are statistics on child abuse in same sex households.

      • Kosh103

        Dave –¬† While you do have a point, evidance in the public arena seems to indicate hetrosexual parental¬†child abuse is a major problem, where homosexal parental child abuse is next to non exsistent.

  • Russell Belding

    A friendly comment from Louisa. Two points.

    President Obama does not have consistent “religious beliefs” on marriage. While the usual Christian belief is marriage is between one man and one woman for as long as they live (with special case exemptions), President Obama seems to adopt a politically useful position over time. When running for congress from Illinios in 1996 he

    In 2008 he was running for the Oval Office and said 

    His views have since then, in his own words, been evolving, which is fair enough. My point is to say his recent view on the matter should not be thought of as a considered Christian position and used to persuade Christian people with traditional views that they are somehow “deficient”, as Louisa does in her “no rational person could oppose all people …” line of argument.

    A view that “marriage” is meant to be between a man and a woman is not offensive to anyone.¬† Implementing this view in law and attitudes is another matter.

    Another point on “discriminatory”. Much traction seems to be sought by using this word. Louisa more or less says anyone who does not agree with gay marriage is “discriminating” against others. This line is used often and in many contexts. Look and the entirely friendly preface to Louisa’a post by Whale-Oil.

    He is asking us to make a choice based on a moral decision to be courteous. Do not be abusive. Be courteous. Most major decisions we make are grounded in moral values. Valueing marriage as a “sacred union” between me and my one and only wife is partly a moral decision grounded in the Jewish/Christian tradition. Sure many such resolution end up in strife and failure. That says we in this traditon have a lot of remedial work to do, while implementing our understanding of what is good and true.

    • Russell Belding

      The botched quote from WhaleOil should be “courtesy should be extended to guests. Reasoned, sensible arguments from any side of the debate on marriage equality are welcome. Inane abuse is not.” Dunno how the extra stuff got in the quote above …

    • Rodger T

      Ho ho Russell ,  the courtesy is to be extended to guest posters, it`s open season on fellow commenters . ; )

  • Rosa19

    why should the state regulate any relationships of this nature, hetro or homo etc? whats the market failure? surely individuals, regardless of sexuality, can freely contract any terms which fit their needs?

    • Ddduble

      That’s how it should be yes….but the fact is that at this time the state does hold the whip hand over marriage….straight and¬†gay. So getting the¬†state¬†to change its wrong bias against¬†gays¬†is the way to go.

      • Kosh103

        Marrige is defined as the state sees fit. It always has been. So the state can change it at anytime it likes.

  • Doc

    Apples and oranges have a recognition (by modern society) of equality insomuch as they are both perfectly legitimate fruits.¬†¬† They are both equally likely to be ingredients in a childs lunchbox …or in a fruit salad.

    However Рthings tend to become a little bit complicated when the orange asks to be given the option of replacing the apple in a Waldorf Salad.  

    Would it still be a Waldorf Salad if there was no Apple in it?

    Heh – perhaps “fruits” were not the best metaphor to use :-)

    …personally, I haven’t formed a hard&fast¬†opinion either way on this issue – but I feel there is merit in debating both sides of the matter.

    I mean, we could call it a Gay-Waldorf…¬† or a Wladorf-with-Orange…¬† and it may be as nutritious and delicious as a ‘traditional’ Waldorf Salad – but would it be right to assert that the two recipes were the same thing?

    PS.  Yes Рi realise that the metaphor is not perfect.

    • CommonSense404

      Not perfect, but a good one!

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OK7Y7PCSTJ27RCKZ2MGRSAYCTE NEIL

      You’re not the Doctor starboard was referring to above are you?

      • Doc

        Don’t be silly Neil.¬†

        I’m not suggesting that homosexuals should be ‘cured’, or that they shouldn’t be afforded the same rights and opportunities as heterosexuals.

        All I’m pointing out is that you cannot have; Brass – without Zinc

        …or Bronze – without Tin.

        You can take two quantities of Copper and combine (or dare i say “marry them together”) in any way imaginable, and you will still not be able to call the result Brass or Bronze…

        Why should it be different in the case of ‘Marriage’?

      • Boss Hogg

        Doc Рnot all metals when mixed with others form proper or useful Alloys.  I say get that damn government out of all of it and leave it to individuals to form what contracts (useful alloys) that they want.

        Gets more complex when things like adoption is concerned – who is arogant enough to think they can decide who should and should not be allowed to adopt – what a bastard of a question that is.¬† Some gov. organisation?¬† Too hard for a Friday afternoon……….Cheers

      • Kosh103

        Because Doc people are not metals.

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  • Allanspear

    I also hold the position that gay people should have the choice to have all the rights of straight people, but I do have a problem with them wanting to change the traditional meaning of “marriage”. I am straight and married. This means that when I state the fact that I am married, it means that I am heterosexual and have a female wife. If “marriage” becomes a general term for any kind of relationship, it takes the distinction¬†away from married people. I don’t have anythig against gay people, but I do not agree with their lifestyle, and do not need to be associated with it by blurring that distinction.

    Sorry Cam, this is one of the few issues on which we disagree. (how’s that! I didn’t end with a preposition!)

    • Misanthropic Curmudgeon

      Are you aware you contradict yourself? You say homosexuals should ” have all the rights of straight people” but then seek to continuing denying them the right marry the perons of their choosing.

      Banning homosexual marriage is akin to banning inter-racial marriage, inter-generational marriage …

      How about I modify your words in light of the above and you see how palatable it is: ‘when I state the fact that I am married, it means that I am orange and have a orange wife’¬†

      • Bunswalla

        Are you aware that you’re talking out of your arse?

    • Ddduble

      What is this “traditional¬†Marriage” of which you speak? All forms of union have been “traditional at one time or another in Man’s past….

    • Kosh103

      Tell me –¬† how does one persons marriage make your marriage any less than what it is?

      • Bunswalla

        Well for a start, a marriage with only one person in it is pretty sad. I genuinely feel sorry for you Kosh, if that’s the case. Or is that “Neville”?

  • middleagedwhiteguy

    Marriage used to be very different to what it is today. ¬† A wife used to be regarded as property of the husband. ¬† As late as the 1950’s it was illegal in most US States to employ a married woman. ¬† Inter-racial marriage was banned, then frowned upon, but is now readily accepted in most circles.

    If Marriage is a God given covenant, as many would suggest, then why has the practice changed with the social mores of the day?    I used to be homophobic, because that is what I thought society expected of me.    I signed the petition against homosexual law reform.  I now wish I could go back to that 18 year old me and call him ignorant and scared for no reason.  I was so wrong.

    I now have gay and lesbian friends, who I do not see as different to me in any meaningful way.   The live, they love, they raise children, they pay the bills, they moan about the price of milk, and do it all in the knowledge that others will shun them and consider them some sort of lesser class of person, because that is what their group demands of them.

    The traditional version of marriage has changed.   It will change again.  It used to be until death do us part.  My first wife made that vow in a church.  She was quite religious compared to me, and yet, 3 years later, she left me.  So much for that belief then.

    My second wife and I made no such promise, and did not exchange vows in a church in front of a minister.   2 kids and 11 years later, and we are still going strong. 

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OK7Y7PCSTJ27RCKZ2MGRSAYCTE NEIL

      ¬†Nice touch of rationality – good post fella….

    • Karlos

      Comment of the day?

  • CommonSense404

    Allan – you summarise this very well. I am genuinely interested to hear more debate on the rationale behind the gay communities insistence on entitlement to the term “marriage.” I fully endorse their right to the same legal status so to me this is not an issue of discrimination.

  • Bunswalla

    Gay men in a civil union HAVE adopted children in New Zealand – see http://www.raineycollins.co.nz/your-resources/articles/male-civil-union-partners-adopt-surrogate-children/

    • Kosh103

      Ummmm did you actually read that Buns. You are either being very thick or very dishonest.

      • Koosh103

        Ohhh Buns, where are you? Hiding from the lie you just tried to sneak past everyone?

      • Bunswalla

        Of course I read it. Clearly you didn’t. You are either incredibly stupid or still telling lies. Possibly both.

      • Bunswalla

        To “Koosh” Bunswalla hides from nothing,and does not lie. Bunswalla has work to do, proper work with computers and everything.

  • Bunswalla

    Louisa’s argument, though well made, is essentially false. To say that”..same-sex couples can only avail themselves of a civil union. That is discriminatory and breaches the basic human rights of a group of people based on their sexual orientation.” is a little like the piece in Life of Brian where Stan wants to be a woman and insists he is being oppressed because his right to have a baby is being denied:

    “Stan: Don’t you oppress me! Reg: I’m not oppressing you, Stan. You haven’t got a womb! Where’s the fetus gonna gestate? You gonna keep it in a box?”

    The basic human rights that everyone has are inextricably linked to their sex. I can no more have a baby than my wife can impregnate a man.

    • middleagedwhiteguy

       This is not about the ability to breed or otherwise.  This is about 2 people, who love each other, and want to commit to spending the rest of their lives together.   My wife and I did not know if we could have kids or not, but that did not prevent us in any way committing to life together.

      Is a childless couple, who are man and wife, any less married for not having children?

      • Bunswalla

        You miss the point. I agree it’s not about the ability to breed or not, and never said it was. It’s about the (doubtless frustrating) inability to change what you are into something you’re not. Stan knew he could never be a woman, and after being shot down when insisting upon the right to be a woman, he eventually settled for having the right to have the right to be a woman. Funny as anything.

        The laws of the land do nothing to prevent “2 people, who love each other, and want to commit to spending the rest of their lives together” from doing so.

        Just out of interest, if two gay men get married, who is the husband, and who is the wife?

  • Guest

    Keep it up, Whale, keep it up.

    5% for the Colin and the Conservatives looks no problem now!

    • Kosh103

      In your dreams.

      • Ddduble

        Not so fast Kosh….if all the bigots end up under Craig’s roof then we know where they are to keep an eye on.

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  • Russell Belding

    The momentum to redefine marriage comes not from good thought but from¬†popular sentiment as persuaded by negative images sourced from bad practices. As a measure of this do the following experiment. Take Louisa’s post and replace “same-sex marriage” with “man-boy marriage”. Her argument reads the same with implications not intended. Marriage is grounded in our nature as it should be, not as it is. By that I imply those of us supporting traditional marriage have a lot to do to rescue the institution of marriage from the bad state it is in.

    • Wade

      I hope you can see the difference between same-sex marriages, and a marriage with a child (If that is what you meant by boy). One is with two consenting adults, the other with a child. Do you regard a homosexual relationship in the same light as paedophilia?

    • BD

      I think you will struggle to a lobbyist to publicly declare that a marriage between a boy/child and a man/woman is a right that should be given. I am sure that sort of adult is completely satisfied with the current arrangements of doing their abhorrant act in the privacy of their own home to their own son/daughter with or without the wifes knowledge.

    • Rodger T

      Once again Russ, with the strawman argument, google it.
      Tho` I notice you left out  the usual , marry your pet  one this time.
      Maybe you could enlist Rush Limbaugh and Newt Gingrich in your attempt to rescue marriages sanctity.
      Possibly Snooki and Kim Kardashian are available also.

    • Kosh103

      I think you need to educate yourself on traditional marriage.

  • Gaz

    “. I believe we all need ¬†to consider this matter in terms of equality and not our personal beliefs. In doing that no rational person could in my view oppose all people, regardless of their sexual orientation, having the same legal rights and ability to choose for themselves how they express their commitment and love for another person.”

    1.  Louisa, what do you propose we use instead of our personal beliefs? 

    Your beliefs? 

    2 . When you say we should “consider this matter in terms of equality”, whose view on what defines “equality” should we take – yours again?

    3.¬† Where did you get this totally impersonal, objective, neutral ¬†view “in terms of equality” from?

    4.¬† What’s wrong with using our own personal beliefs?

    5.  If I disagree with your view, you call me irrational.  Thanks for your gracious stance.

     

  • Russell Belding

    The content of Louisa’s argument is unlinked to her topic indicating a poor argument. If the¬†topic she argues for is switched from “same-sex marriage” to “man-boy marriage” public support for the argument would drop. Her argument is basically “allow same sex marriages because its popular”.

    I have done the substitution in the text below. Read it and see how the argument proceeds with currently unwanted conclusions.

    President Barack Obama’s support for man-boy marriage will hopefully inject momentum into the issue here. As Chair of Rainbow Labour Caucus I have been working on a Member’s bill amending the Marriage Act that I hope will be endorsed by Rainbow Labour and our Labour Caucus and placed in the ballot.
    Our current Marriage Act does not define marriage as a union between one man and one woman and that is a distinction that we have from other countries like Australia and the United States. The Quilter majority decision of the Court of Appeal in the 1990s essentially passed the issue of man-boy marriage back to Parliament because the Court believed the 1955 Marriage Act contemplated marriage in the traditional sense and any change that society wished to make should be done by legislation. The Court acknowledged the Act was discriminatory but justified it by virtue of the time that the Act was passed. Justice Thomas however expressed a minority view that the 1955 Act was discriminatory and could not be justified under the NZ Bill of Rights Act. However he accepted that the Bill of Rights Act could not strike down the discriminatory nature of the Marriage Act ‚Äď in law they have the same status.
    Our response in Aotearoa was the Civil Union Act 2004 which established civil unions for same-sex and opposite sex couples. I believe the experience of civil unions has resulted in what I see as a greater acceptance of man-boy marriage today. Civil unions are a validly accepted institution amongst most people and one used by heterosexual couples as well. Essentially man-boy marriage along with man-boy adoption remain the issues that need to be addressed before we can say there is substantive equality in Aotearoa for the rainbow community.
    Marriage for some man-boy couples is the preferred way for them to commit themselves to another person. For others, both man-boy and opposite sex, their commitment is best expressed by a civil union. Currently opposite sex couples can exercise either option but man-boy couples can only avail themselves of a civil union. That is discriminatory and breaches the basic human rights of a group of people based on their sexual orientation.
    What I admire about President Obama’s public position is his ability to acknowledge that at a personal level, given his religious beliefs, it is not something that sits too comfortably with him but, at a moral level, and bearing in mind a commitment to equality and embodied in the constitution of the USA he cannot oppose man-boy marriage. I believe we all need to consider this matter in terms of equality and not our personal beliefs. In doing that no rational person could in my view oppose all people, regardless of their sexual orientation, having the same legal rights and ability to choose for themselves how they express their commitment and love for another person.
     
    Note this is NOT Louisa’s content. It is a substitution and meant¬†to show her argument is easily transferable to other “marriages”.

    • Rodger T

      To save you googling it,
      Description of Straw ManThe Straw Man fallacy is committed when a person simply ignores a person’s actual position and substitutes a distorted, exaggerated or misrepresented version of that position. This sort of “reasoning” has the following pattern:
      Person A has position X.
      Person B presents position Y (which is a distorted version of X).
      Person B attacks position Y.
      Therefore X is false/incorrect/flawed.This sort of “reasoning” is fallacious because attacking a distorted version of a position simply does not constitute an attack on the position itself. One might as well expect an attack on a poor drawing of a person to hurt the person.

  • It seems to me

    It seems to me that the argument, in NZ, is that the modern western concept of jealousy is alive and well.¬†ie I want to be like them others and have a “marriage”.¬†
    WHY?   if civil unions were to be changed to include the ability to adopt children then the only difference would be nomenclature?  ie one word Marriage being used to describe the male/female  situation quid pro quo. Civil Union (or some other word) being used to describe a non male/female union.
    I have to say that the modern idiom of calling spouses “partners” is frustrating.¬† I never know whether they are married,¬† living togethre, or in business together.
    The english language reputatedly has the most extensive descriptors of any languages, yet here we are apparently trying to ascribe one  word to have more meanings.

    Am presuming all the polls(with maybe loaded questions) that are used to indicate that the common person is accepting of gay marriage , might reflect that the average person doesnt give a rats arse unless it impacts them directly.   So to get the pollster off the phone average JoBlow or Joette Blow just agrees with the polster.

    Thats as it seems to me.  Damn but theres a lot of hysteria over the subject.
    PS. Wikipedia should not be used as a definative source for anything as, like many things on the interweb. Its somebodies opinion..
    PPS.¬† All the reading I have done over the yeras does not support the contention of some on this thread that homosexual marriage excisted before the hetrosexual version. It is well¬† documented¬† that greek & roman soldiers were encouraged to take male lovers. The concept was they would be look after their lovers in battle….

    Well thats as I see it.

  • Se√°n

    Alan Partridge says it best: “…And we live together…We’re not gay!
    I’ve nothing against them, its just that as I see it as God created Adam and Eve. He didn’t create Adam and Steve.¬†I’m kind of a homo-skeptic.”

    • Kosh103

      More live an idiot.

  • Njcross

    Marriage is and should and must remain a commitment betwen a man and a woman. Amend the Civil Union leegislation to provide the same legal advantages for gays.

    • Kosh103

      Why? What is your reason for supporting limiting civil rights?

      • Bunswalla

        It’s not your right Stan, you can’t be a woman. You can’t have a baby because you haven’t got a womb. Where’s the foetus going to gestate – in a box?

        If you spent a tenth of the time that you do tutting and fretting and throwing little tanties about how oppressed you are on learning how to spell properly and make an argument, you might actually become an effective teacher after all. Then you wouldn’t be so petrified that National Standards will expose your many shortcomings.

        I see a book and a movie coming: Professor Strangelove – or How I learned to stop worrying and love National Standards. By Kosh.

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