Aus­tralian so­ci­ety val­ues equal­ity

Augusta Margaret River Times - - Letters - Rhi­an­non Chute Mar­garet River

I feel an op­pos­ing view should be given to the let­ter Call for Mar­riage Act to re­main in­tact ( Times, 1/9).

The au­thor ex­er­cised his right to free­dom of ex­pres­sion as per the Aus­tralian Hu­man Rights Com­mis­sion.

This same com­mis­sion states “that the Mar­riage Act con­tin­ues to dis­crim­i­nate against same-sex cou­ples by ex­plic­itly ex­clud­ing them from the op­por­tu­nity to have their re­la­tion­ship for­mally recog­nised un­der fed­eral law”.

I don’t be­lieve same-sex mar­riage is “a top­i­cal sub­ject brought for­ward by a vo­cal mi­nor­ity group”.

The House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives’ 2012 sur­vey re­vealed about 177,600 peo­ple (64.3 per cent of re­spon­dents) sup­ported same-sex mar­riage, as did 63 per cent of re­spon­dents in the 2017 Es­sen­tial Me­dia poll. These re­spon­dents are a greater num­ber than the 47,000 same-sex cou­ples recog­nised by the 2016 Cen­sus.

The def­i­ni­tion of mar­riage was changed by the Howard gov­ern­ment in 2004 to ex­clude same-sex cou­ples. This can be re­versed to better rep­re­sent our di­verse pop­u­la­tion.

And while pro­cre­ation may re­quire a male and female pair­ing, it is not a pre-req­ui­site to mar­riage, as there are al­ready mar­ried same-sex cou­ples cur­rently rais­ing chil­dren.

I feel mar­riage should be a le­gal recog­ni­tion of a cou­ple’s com­mit­ment to each other rather than what gen­der they are.

The mar­riage of another cou­ple does not in any way “dis­par­age” the mar­riage be­tween my­self and my hus­band. Our so­ci­ety val­ues “equal­ity of op­por­tu­nity for in­di­vid­u­als” (bor­ Surely we can ap­ply this to le­gal­is­ing same-sex mar­riage?

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