Why does The Age print articles like this from Karina Okotel, the federal Liberal vice-president under the banner.
‘Yes’ campaign must keep its promises after 5 million people voted ‘No’ in same-sex-marriage ballot.
Karina Okotel with her children Hannah, 3, David 2, and baby Grace. Photo: Jason South
To start with, the people who voted Yes, and I was one of them, didn’t make any promises to the people who voted No.
We also voted about the rights of all people to get married, not on the rights of the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker to deny services to various customers. We don’t expect that to be incorporated into Dean Smith’s bill which we do expect to be passed before Christmas
She goes on to write: “Senator Dean Smith’s bill provides protections only around a wedding ceremony and to religious clerics, but does not encompass protections for speech, religious beliefs more broadly, or to children being exposed to radical gender theory against a parent’s wishes.”
I still find it incomprehensible to understand how someone can get themselves worked up into an intellectual lather that allows them to think that gay couples getting married will mean that radical gender theory will be taught in classrooms.
I know a number of gay couples, all of whom will certainly get married once legislation is passed, but best of my knowledge none of them will be storming into the classrooms of Victoria to teach radical gender theory. They will just be living happily ever after.
A bit like the fairy story.
She also writes about Felix Ngole who posted some biblical passages on Facebook to support his religious beliefs and got tossed out of Sheffield University which regarded him as being unfit to be a social worker. The High Court later upheld the University’s decision. Without making the point, presumably Okotel sees this as an indication of the kind of discrimination that will arise from the legislation of same-sex marriage. No, the High Court, not normally given to exaggerated utterances, saw the posts as ” judgmental, incompatible with service ethos, or suggestive of discriminatory intent”. This means that Felix is not really a poster boy for a tolerant society.
Okotel’s article is absolute nonsense and the editors of The Age should have recognised it as such and should not have printed it.
The “No” vote campaigners had their chance to mount this argument in the run-up to the postal vote. It was comprehensively rejected because it was a spurious argument. Now Okotel’s having another bite at the apple courtesy of The Age.
Is it because The Age ran a heartfelt article by Penny Wong Why all Australians had a stake in the postal vote on same-sex marriage that it felt it should have some “balance” by printing an article by Karina Okotel?
If it did, running the article by Okotel didn’t achieve that.
It is time to move on. A highly divisive and expensive postal vote has now been concluded. Malcolm Turnbull must ensure that the legislation is passed by Christmas and the responsible media must ensure that the divisive voices such as Karina Okotel are no longer given access to “balanced coverage”.