Australia Set for Gay Marriage Row!

It appears a row is brewing in Australia over the issue of gay marriage, after the Australian Capital Territory legalised same-sex weddings. The 17 member ACT legislative committee passed the bill which flew in the face of the 2004 marriage law, which specified that marriage was a bond between a man and a woman.

The ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher told the parliament that

“There is no longer any excuse, if there ever was, to discriminate against same sex couples in our community”

“They are our children, our parents, our brothers, our sisters and our colleagues. More than anything they are our equals. The Marriage Equality Act puts this fundamental principle into law”

The law would mean that couples could travel to the ACT to get married, regardless of what state they live in.


Legal Challenge

Now this is where it gets tricky. As previously mentioned, it goes against Federal law, which is law on a national level. This was seemingly reaffirmed last year when a bill allowing same sex marriage was voted down in both houses of Australia’s national parliament. Attorney-General George Brandis is quoted as saying

“It would be very distressing to individuals who may enter into a ceremony of marriage under the new ACT law and to their families, to find their marriages are invalid.”

With such a legal contradiction, there seems to be no way that this won’t end up in court. And though we respect the rights of people to have an opinion different to us, we know which side of the argument we hope the courts come down in favour of.

It seems crazy in this day and age that people do not have the same rights as others, when all they want to do is to live their own lives. Yet there are people out there with entrenched opinions, and as we said before, they are entitled to them.

It says it all when you realise that Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott is opposed to gay marriage, whilst his sister is engaged to her same sex partner.

If that doesn’t signify what is still a big divide in society, then I don’t know what does.

Martin Ward
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