We think marriage equality activist Dr. Kerryn Phelps easily won this morning’s live TV debate with Australian Christian Lobbyist Jim Wallace, who is ‘branching out’ with his latest traditional marriage analogy.
“The scriptures are very clear,” began Wallace (pictured first), in an item which 7’s Sunrise viewers had voted to see from a range of topical issues. “We wouldn’t ordain a homosexual marriage.
“The reason is couched in the natural,” he reasoned. “Whether you believe that God created nature; or whether you believe that there was nothing, it all exploded and then there was everything… it still take the involvement of a man and a woman to create a child.
“I find it absolutely amazing that at a time in our history when we are jumping through hoops to make sure every tree on the planet has its natural environment and flourish, that we would be challenging the definition of marriage, which creates exactly that environment for a child.”
Gosh. Where do you start? Phelps (pictured second) was keen to point out that Wallace’s opposition to gay marriage did not necessarily represent all Christians or all religions.
“There are a number of religions that have come out in favour,” she explained. “There are a number of clergymen within the Christian faith who have actually come out in favour of marriage equality. So this is by no means unanimous amongst the religions.
“Religion and state should really by kept separate where this is concerned. If religions want to keep discriminating for example against divorced couples and not marry them, or against same-sex couples in terms of having their religious ceremonies around marriage, then that’s up to them. What this is about is legal protection around a relationship for two people.
“I think we also have to separate marriage and procreation,” she added. “You don’t have to be married to procreate. You don’t have to procreate to raise children, because a lot of children are adopted… there are a lot of children who are being born into same-sex relationships – and those children deserve for their parents to have the same rights.”
Wallace jumped in to point out that only a minority of churches support gay marriage, and that recent law reforms have taken away legal discrimination against same-sex couples.
But then he got back to his strange ‘natural’ argument about trees: “It’s about holding up an aspirational model in society, which the government has the right to do, to make sure children can flourish in the same way we are demanding for trees.”