Sunday, 29 November -0001 19:00

Canada australia: Two Views On Same Sex Marriage:

Written by Rev. H.A. Bergsma
“As a nation and as a society, Canada stands at a critical crossroads. In the next few months we will be deciding whether to pass the government’s bill to legalize same sex marriage. What we decide, which road we take, will determine in a large measure whether our children, grandchildren and future generations will inherit a stable, prosperous and healthy society. All Canadians should understand that about a year ago Australia was at this same crossroads where we find ourselves today. They were facing court cases by same-sex Australian couples who have been married abroad (primarily in Canada) who were going to demand that their marriages be recognized as legal in Australia. The Australian government’s response was totally opposite to the direction our government is taking. That should give every Canadian pause. Instead of moving to legalize same-sex marriage, Australia passed legislation to define marriage as only the union of a man and a woman, specifically prohibiting same-sex marriage. This legislation was advanced by the Conservative government and supported by the opposition Labour Party. Why would Australia respond so differently than our government? After all, it also is a commonwealth country with similar cultural and legal roots (and one with which Canada increasingly is being compared these days). Australians as a whole are certainly every bit as tolerant and concerned about legitimate minority rights as Canadians. The answer is simple, but vitally important for every Canadian to understand and carefully consider. It goes beyond the fact that a majority of Australians, like a majority of Canadians, opposes legalizing same-sex marriage, though in a democratic system that should be a significant consideration. Rather, as Australian Prime Minister John Howard said, he was pushing to define traditional marriage in law and prohibit same-sex marriage in order to protect a fundamental bedrock institution of our society, which has contributed massively to our stability and to our success. The Australian government and the opposition both understand what our government does not: how marriage is defined will profoundly affect our future stability and our success because it will directly affect families. They understand that the future of Australia is tied to the strength of its families. Throughout history and across cultures, strong families have always been the essential foundation of strong, resilient and successful societies. And make no mistake about it; legalizing same-sex marriage would profoundly and negatively affect the future of the family in Canada or any other country that takes such action. It would inevitably and irreversibly change the way our children and future generations would look at marriage and its relationship to the family.” (Excerpts of a letter byHon. Dr. Grant Hill, P.C. Coordinator, Defend Marriage Canada Project, written to Canadian Citizens to Defend Marriage.)
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