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Australia votes against legalising equal marriage

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  1. Such a sad day for Australian LGBT community. The rest of us should also let our dis-satisfaction be known by refusing to attend Sydney Mardi Gras and spending our disposable income in a country which does not believe that we are worthy of equality.

    1. Indeed. I suggested this (in my personal capacity) on twitter this morning ans surprised that Ozzies in London took offence. I am afraid they will have to get used to it.

      1. I imagine whoever has thumbed down our comments loves Mardi Gras but does not care about equal marriage.

        For those who cannot seem to understand my comment, I am saddened by the fact the law failed to make it through the Australian Parliament, I feel for our Australian LGBT brothers & sisters who will continue to be treated as if they are second class citizens.

        A Mardi Gras boycott would show the government that we are important people, we pay our taxes, we work and we deserve the right to be married.

        But clearly, for some, partying it far more important than equality.

        1. bobbleobble 19 Sep 2012, 10:17am

          More likely it was Matthew – that truly wonderful human being who rejoices in the limiting of the rights of his fellow humans presumably in the name of his religion.

          1. Or ‘troll’ for short.

    2. Sydney Mardi Gras is held in NSW, one of the states that is now trying to get marriage equality because of the failure at federal level. Why wouldn’t you support fellow LGBT people in NSW at Mardi Gras ? I don’t really get it, punish the LGBT businesses , staight and gay people who support mardi gras and SSM simply becuase this bill, that was doomed to failure (once Australia got a coalition govt of a majority of 1 or 2 they never had the numbers to succeed unless the opposition supported them – the opposition have voted against everything lab has introduced). There’s been huge publicity and support among the Australian publc and lots of the press. The bill has at least given us that as well as a push for SSM at state level.

      1. Absolutely agree. I lived in the Uk for years, though, and I don’t think a lot of Poms fully grasp the state/federal distinction and why punishing a state event – especially a state event with is financially important for LGBT businesses – for a federal decision is counterproductive.

        Putting my hope in the states that have promised to pursue marriage equality, now. There was never much hope with the Feds.

      2. I am Australian.

        Trust me on this, the only thing that will make federal politicians wake up will be severe international negative publicity and economic threats over Australia’s disgraceful stand against gay people.

        Australia needs to be boycotted over its refusal to recognize the equality of gay relationships at the federal level.

    UK look and learn, Cameron this could save you!

    1. bobbleobble 19 Sep 2012, 10:16am

      I don’t think anything much could save Cameron but turning his back on a policy that he proposed ain’t gonna do it.

      It’s also not going to save Julia Gillard who despite her opposition to same sex marriage will no doubt find herself back on the back benches after the next general election.

      Oh and you don’t mean common sense. What you mean is that you are happy that some Australians have been denied civil rights. The fact that you find that sensible is truly objectionable.

    2. Please don’t give Cameron any tips about saving himself…that is absolutely the last thing we need!

      Despite equal marriage being an issue that directly affects me (as a trans woman in a pre existing marriage, I cannot change my birth cert without ending my marriage), it is slipping down the rankings – there is so much to hate this government for…health, education, sleeping with bankers and many other issue…that I am willing to wait for equal marriage if we can nuke the Tories.

  3. There’s stil victory to be won at state/terroity level. Not all is lost. The Australia public support SSM but we’re stuck with a PM who is only there becuase of the Catholic union bosses and an opposition leader who is Catholic and who would vote NO for anything that Labour try to do. Lab , however, have acted disgrafully at fed level and more should have come out in support. The govt is still in a coaltiion govt with only a small majority (around 1) and this bill was never going to pass so it’s not a surprise.

    And before everyone rubbishes Australia. Like the UK we do have state civil unions and de facto status at fed level and as such have more or less equal rights to married people. Not that much worse than the UK in fact and a lot better equal rights to a lot of Western counties including the USA. We’re fighting the same battle as the UK!

    1. Australian civil unions are little better than just a register of gay relationships. They confer no rights or responsibilities and are NOTHING like UK civil partnerships, which have provisions to have legal equivalence to marriage.

  4. So much for the Land of Oz being much more liberal that the “old country” and leading the way in what is sensible, Now the UK will follow suite like so many of the sheep that they export. We in the UK can expect our bill to be so diluted as to make it worthless a big thanks to OZ and its politicos for keeping the World firmly in the dark ages.

  5. It’s really sad that Oz seems to be going the way of the USA in reversing the usual formula that increasing prosperity brings an increasingly liberal outlook with it. The increasing gulf between metropolitan and suburban/rural attitudes there is also a shame.

    1. Cardinal Capone 19 Sep 2012, 12:26pm

      It also has something to do with the rise of evangelical cults over there, who do whatever charismatic type leaders tell them.

    2. Robert in S. Kensington 19 Sep 2012, 1:23pm

      That’s the problem with countries that have federal systems of government. I’m glad we don’t have it in the UK.

      1. Interesting – but Canada has done rather well, hasn’t it?

      2. Cardinal Capone 19 Sep 2012, 4:58pm

        We do. Scotland and Northern Ireland have their own legal systems.

      3. Federalism has nothing to do with it. The power of the catholic church and extreme Protestants and their venerated position in Australian political life, is the big problem. That and heavy influences from the tea party American right on the Australian rightwingers parties.n

      4. Spanner1960 22 Sep 2012, 8:03am

        It’s not federal systems that are the problem, but states.
        Breaking up a country makes it considerably harder and more expensive to manage. Look at the US – 50 different sets of laws- it is a total mess. OK, so Oz lost out this time, but there will be other opportunities. Fragmentalising countries only scatters the problem.
        They should have never even devolved Scotland in my opinion.

  6. Gay Activist Paul Mitchell 19 Sep 2012, 11:37am

    What a great shame Australia has become with it’s ongoing continuous blatant racism, xenophobia and homophobia. I am totally embarrassed to be Australia right now with the world’s eyes truly on this vote. Not even a quarter of MPs support same sex marriage!

    64 percent of ordinary Australians SUPPORT equality within marriage, our politicians are 10 to 15 years behind public opinion here – my best mate said to me this afternoon after work after hearing and looking at this!

    New Zealand and New Caledonia (which is under French law) are loverly and nice places next door right now!

    1. It is nice to see how governments listen to the people who elect them isn’t it?

      Let’s hope that come the next election, something happens which will again but this issue back on the table and voted for in the right and correct way.


    1. Look a very large and clear majority of Australian voters strongly support gay marriage, which makes this all the more tragic.

  8. Perhaps the UK Tory party in support of SSM in Australia should cancel Senator Cori Bernardi’s lecture to the European Young Conservative Freedom summit this weekend for his remarks linking SSM to bestiality. Perhpas the LGBT community in the UK could boycot him in support? Even the opposition party in Australia gave him the sack for that comment so it’s surprising the Tories would like to know his opinion on anything.

  9. Perhaps we need to tackle this world wide bias with the ‘No taxation without representation’ arguament. Why should anyone have to pay the same taxes to a state that stands and votes against the equal rights of a minority.

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 19 Sep 2012, 1:24pm

      That’s an excellent point. If we’re good enough to die for our country while serving in the military, then we’re good enough for FULL equality without exception.

  10. Craig Nelson 19 Sep 2012, 12:09pm

    This is a very disappointing vote – a very big majority against and a lot bigger than expected.

    At least it is clear now that progress – for the time being – will come at the state level rather than the federal level. I think New Zealand will get there before Australia. At least there is progress.

  11. A sad day for Australian politics when gay people and their families are at the mercy of political games of the repugnant duo Gillard & Abbott.
    Alex Greewich is absolutely right when he says “Now the federal parliament has effectively brushed the wishes of a majority of Australians aside”… that’s exactly what they’ve done. Shame on them.

  12. Jock S. Trap 19 Sep 2012, 12:37pm

    A Very sad day for Australia.

    That people have such problems about who people love while demanding their own love is what is important not others is immoral and disgusting. It makes no sense other to deliberately discriminate against a community that they will still seek equal payments in taxes and services.


  13. And the fight goes on!!!!!!!!

  14. The 98-42 vote which although sounds like a huge majority against is a bit skewed and doesn’t represent how MPs would have voted if they had all been given conscience votes. The opposition has 72 seats and they were whipped into a no vote. I suspect the anti gay marriage brigade will use the majority vote as a sign that Australia doesn’t want SSM but it’s not a fair vote. Thank heavens all leaders in NSW are going to allow a conscience vote on their SSM bill!

  15. Robert in S. Kensington 19 Sep 2012, 1:28pm

    Wait for the gloating to begin coming from the hate groups C4M/CI upon learning this. It will galvanise them to try and bring about the same outcome. It’s about time people like Clegg stop apologising to them and call them out for what they are. That goes for all MPs who support equal marriage. The bigots get away with the most vile rhetoric yet when we fire back, we’re accused of being militant activists, as if the bigots aren’t.

    Take comfort, Australia, you will eventually win, just like Denmark did when it’s first attempt failed.

  16. Very disappointing, but the general trend in Australia, as in other Western liberal democracies, is in favour. Equal marriage will be won, and I don’t believe it will now take long.

  17. Yes, a sad day when a government dictates to the representatives they have to vote the “leader’s” way on an issue such as this.
    You know, we have had legalized gay marriage here in Canada for a number of years, without detriment. In fact, legislatures were able to move on with business. Too many governments use this issue to keep the people focused on something while they do what? certainly not govern. Keep up the pressure and legal battles and one day victory shall be yours.

  18. Pavlos Prince of Greece 19 Sep 2012, 3:53pm

    98-42! Its like Waterloo for same-sex marriage in Australia… Was not all members of Labor part present? What about Foreign affaires minister, who has announce his support for gay marriage last week? And independent deputies? Is marriage equality now also in Victoria and Northern Territory possible?

    1. It’s a matter of the extraordinary and disproportionate influence of the Catholic Right on federal Labor. Our dear PM, for all she’s an avowed atheist, owes them everything for their support when she was backstabbing Rudd, and it’s rumoured she offered opposition to same-sex marriage as part of the deal. I bet she exerted a hell of a lot of influence to jettison the vote.

      State Labor seems a much better bet.

  19. We must just keep fighting. We shall win in the end. Clever, intelligent tactics must be used.

  20. Cardinal Capone 19 Sep 2012, 5:07pm

    I’ve never thought seriously about the Greens before, and tbh I’m not totally sure what they stand for, except environmental protection. But with their stand on our behalf in Brighton, and I believe in Australia too, maybe they are worth a look.

    If I was in Australia I would certainly be checking them out.

  21. Art Pearson 19 Sep 2012, 8:15pm

    I think its amazing how out of touch with the people some governments can be. Well over 50% of the population support same sex marriage but the government sill votes it down. Hopefully the people will remember this at the next election.

  22. A boycott will be a waste of time. The Mardi Gras is a state event whereas the perpetrators of this blatant act of discrimination are federal politicians who have been recruited by their parties specifically because they are stupid, ignorant and gutless.

    1. A boycott will work. Australia needs to be held to account. The only thing that will throw cold water over the federal politicians will be international condemnation and economic pain.

  23. Take a look at some of the Labor members who voted against gay marriage, Kevin Rudd, Wayne Swan. It is time for all supporters of gay marriage to JUST VOTE GREEN. Why vote for any party that denies equal rights and thinks you are a second class citizen.

  24. Gillard has to be one of the most vile, backwards cretins in the Western world.

  25. Dennis Battler 22 Sep 2012, 3:18am

    Marriages by Same-Sex Couples Jump in Canada

    New Statistics Canada census data released Sept 19 shows that between the 2006 census and 2011, while the number of traditional families declined, the number of married same-sex couples nearly tripled.

    … standing with all countries with equality laws, the resistance in the UK, U.S.A. and Australia to same sex marriage laws is staggering, alarmingly repressive and above all antiquated. Being the quiet little cousin of the world countries, sitting quietly in the background, self congratulations are frowned upon within the national psyche. In light of this absurd archaic hetero domination of these countries in particular, congratulations are well in order to Canada and the countries where same sex marriage is supported in law.

    Each country is unique. There must be options for gay rights workers to support each other internationally to move equality forward in persistently repressive countries.

  26. David Gadd 22 Sep 2012, 5:57am

    Well proves our federal Parliment is not doing what they were elected to do and support the will of the people. therefore maybe at the next election all 92 that voted against the bill should be voted out of parliment and put people in that will represent the electorates.

  27. Spanner1960 22 Sep 2012, 8:00am

    A real shame, but not particularly unexpected. A country demonstrates it’s nature by how it treats its minorities.

    I’m afraid Australia still has a long way to go.

  28. Australian’s are happy the way we are. A conservative christian, family values country

  29. Australia does not have laws against hate speech or civil unions at a federal level, and civil unions have just been repealed in Queensland. What a bunch of red necks (not to mention their hatred of asylum seekers and immigrants)

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