Things You Need to Know about Same-Sex Marriage: Australian Plebiscite 2017

This blog post is not going to support either side, this is something you should decide on by yourself. This blog post will however, provide you the facts for both sides of the argument.

What are voting on?

Plainly, if you believe same-sex couples should be allowed to marry.

Currently, the law reads:

 “marriage means the union of a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life” – Marriage Act 1961 

Who is able to vote?

Any Australian citizen over the age of 18 and enrolled to vote.

How did we end up with a postal vote?

In 2016, the Turnbull Coalition Government proposed the idea of a compulsory plebiscite to determine if Australia should legalise same-sex marriage. To legalise this, there would need to be a change to the Marriage Act (1961) which can only happen if the bill passes through the Senate. The Government’s attempt for a plebiscite did not pass through Senate (after two attempts) after being opposed by Labour, The Greens, and various cross benchers; this was due to its expense, that its result was not legally binding, and the potential for it to impact negatively on the LGBTQI community. As Turnbull’s Government was unable to conduct a plebiscite, we are being given the opportunity of a postal survey.

Why should I vote?

 Although unable to change the law like a referendum, this postal survey is an opportunity for the government to assess the Australian communities support for the issue.

Should I vote yes or no?

Well, that is completely up to you!

Reasons to vote YES – you do believe same sex couples should be allowed to marry:
  • A yes vote may allow for the Parliament to allow a conscience vote.
  • If majority of Australians vote YES, the government does not legally have to introduce a private member’s bill.
Reasons to vote NO – you do not believe same sex couples should be allowed to marry
  • You will have your voice heard
  • You will be informing the Australian Government that marriage should remain between man and woman
  • You will show your support to NO CHANGES to the Marriage Act

Will opposite-sex marriage be effected if we allow same-sex marriage?

No

What countries currently allow same-sex marriage?

(Current as of date of publishing)

23 countries including:

  • Netherlands (first country in the world, 2001)
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Spain
  • South Africa
  • Norway
  • Sweeden
  • Portugal
  • Iceland
  • Argentina
  • Denmark
  • Brazil
  • Uruguay
  • New Zealand
  • United Kingdom (excluding Northern Ireland)
  • France
  • Ireland
  • United States
  • Luxemburg
  • Colombia
  • Greenland
  • Finland
  • Slovenia

From this, please infer that any country not listed here had not legalised same sex marriage

So, remind me, what does the bible say about it all?

  • Genesis 19

This passage is the one commonly associated with the condemnation of male homosexual sex; as this is where the word sodomite and sodomy originate. The story of Sodom and Gomorrah however, it about gang-rape.
Genesis 19 therefore makes no mention of homosexuality or consensual sex between two people.

  • Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13

This passage explicitly labels a man laying with another man instead of his wife an abomination. Although it is not able to be determined if this is due to adultery or due to being homosexual.

  • Corinthians 6:9-10 and Timothy 1:10

These teachings (loosely) support male-male sexual intercourse. What is condemned is the male taking on the ‘female’ sexual role in intercourse.

  • Romans 1:26-27

Paul condemns people leaving their usual partner for one of the same sex; which he states is a result of idolatry

In total, only 0.016% of the Bible alludes to homosexual matters. Although, not all of these verses are certain to be about same-sex partnerships.  It can therefore be surmised the Bible has no concern for homosexual behaviours.

 

 

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