The New Zealand parliament looks set to pass legislation which will equate homosexual marriage with traditional marriage. In doing so we a country are sailing into unchartered waters.
The Parliamentary Select Committee who examined Louisa Wall’s Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill took the opportunity to add amendments. Notably it made an amendment to include protection of freedoms of belief and expression for individual church ministers whose religious organisations have not yet formalised a view on whether or not to accept same-sex marriage, or where the church organisation has refused to adopt an official position on the issue. However the amendment does not broaden out this individual right to civil celebrants and registrars. The argument was that Civil celebrants and registrars should not have this protection, because they are performing a paid, public service.
It is very notable that most marriages in New Zealand fall under this latter category and it is great concern that civil celebrants and registrars will be compelled under this Bill if enacted to marry same sex couples even when they may not wish to do so. On Wednesday 27th March in Parliament a number of MP’s put forward amendments which would have protected the rights of these celebrants. Unlike the Parliamentary Select Committee amendments which were accepted, these amendments were soundly voted down.
Right to Life believes this will significant negative consequences for those who do not wish to marry homosexual partners. There are also unanswered questions about where those religious clergy will stand who oppose marrying Same Sex couples should their own organisations adopt the acceptance of homosexual marriage. Should not Parliament make this clearer in law? These questions surely should not need to be tested in our law courts. Parliament should be giving better direction. Or is there an agenda here?
What would be the consequences of the passing of this bill? Right to Life suggests that they will be dire, both for individuals, on organisations and for society. What in effect we are doing is taking at an institution that has stood the scrutiny of thousands of years and is the fundamental building block of society and tampering with it to include same sex marriage which is a very very new concept, with next to no research in how it will impact us sociologically. Has Parliament done its due diligence? Have we really examined the sociological impacts, particularly on children? We don’t believe so. There is an age old adage. “Sow to the wind – reap the whirlwind”.
Right to Life also predicts that should this contentious and dangerous bill be adopted then it will have serious implications for the freedom of free speech and the freedom of religion in our country. Make no mistake there is far more to the homosexual agenda than ‘equality’ in law.