Saturday, 30 June 2012

Cairns Post Letters from the Wingnuts #1 (Gay marriage)

Karl Kuhle of Gordonvale opined in the Letters to the Editor of the Cairns Post on Wednesday this week:
There is a reason why many with religious leanings are wary of the effect civil unions and gay marriage will have on their ability to express faith without state intervention.

It's because history has, and is, showing that civil unions really are the thin edge of the wedge.

As happened this week in Denmark, the first country in the world to offer civil unions for gay couples.

Under new laws individual priests can refuse to carry out the gay marriage ceremony, but the local bishop must arrange a replacement for their church.
Karl neglects to mention that the Danish laws only apply to the Denmark's official national Lutheran Church. It applies to no other churches. Karl is complaining about the state trying to have a say in the state run and funded church. Karl continues:
In other words, if your church doesn't act as dictated by the government, the priest or pastor gets fired.
Bullshit. The priests would be able to refuse, and the local bishop would simply find another priest to perform that particular wedding. The priest that refused would go on with his duties as per usual. It would be nice if the priest was to be fired - the priest would be, after all, a government employee. Back to Karl's letter:
If you think any government promising "Your church will not be forced to perform gay marriages" should be believed, just remember that there was a time when the carbon tax was never going to happen either.
The carbon tax? Okay, let's change the subject briefly. The Labor Party stated that they would not enact a carbon tax but an emissions trading scheme - but clearly did so on the presumption that it was returned to govern in its own right. Instead, they had to form an alliance with the Greens, and compromise was necessary. I should add that a carbon tax, properly formed as a direct price on coal, gas, and other CO2 emitting fossil fuels at the point of import or extraction, with all proceeds to be returned as a dividend to all citizens, would be the most effective way of reducing CO2 emissions. Emissions trading is greenwashing, and is not going to work.

Anyway, Karl's letter reaches it's climax with the question:
Atheist or otherwise, do you really trust any politician to run both the state and the church?
No, I don't trust politicians to run churches. Wow, Karl and I are in agreement! I eagerly await Karl's letter to the editor of the Cairns Post in which he argues that the Danish government should disestablish the Danish Lutheran Church and stop funding it.

Religious marriage needs to be separated from legal marriage, and the state should recognise legal marriage for gays and lesbians.


  1. I simply don't trust government assurances, do you? And yes, the Church should not be government funded!

    Glad to see you enjoy my Opining!


  2. Karl

    I look forward to perusing your next opinion in the paper. Hopefully it will be harder to poke holes in. :-)

    Unfortunately I know that the government kowtows to religion far too much to attempt to do what you claim. While they may eventually find the will to allow legal marriage for gays, religious marriage will be left in the hands of the churches.

    I will of course be a little amused when, as is inevitable, a gay friendly church wants to perform religious marriages - as they should be allowed to if they wish. Imagine Church A arguing that the state should step in and stop Church B from performing such ceremonies.

  3. Ah, 'tis lways easy to poke holes, Mike - speaking of which, how does your logic with "Bullshit. The priests would be able to refuse, and the local bishop would simply find another priest to perform that particular wedding. The priest that refused would go on with his duties as per usual. It would be nice if the priest was to be fired ..." invalidate my claim that the church would eventually be forced to conduct said marriage? Eventually the Bishop may run out of people to replace the recalcitrants that have been moved on or fired. What happens if the Bishop can't find a replacement to perform the wedding? This effectively forces the will of the government onto the Church. In a democracy, the government 'Kowtows' to the majority - that's its job. Until such time as the move to redefine marriage is validated as something of interest to the majority, then it shouldn't happen. That's a long time from happening - as even in the recent GetUp poll of Top 10 Issues for it's members, Gay Marriage failed to make an appearance ... Over to you ...

  4. You based a non sequitur on a false presumption (the priest would not be fired), so it was doubly wrong.

    You misunderstand our democracy fortunately. We have protections for individual rights from the tyranny of the majority. But even if we were to go with the majority, the poll that matters wouldn't be "does it make the top ten issues for one group", it would be aare the majority of Australians accepting of gay marriage. That figure is about 60%, according to most polling. So you once again base a bad argument on a faulty assumption.

  5. Maaaaate, if nothing else, at least I now know the true meaning of 'Non Sequitor' (had always thoght it was the title of a cartoon strip!), but what are you on about?! Fired or not fired, the end result is the same - the religious freedom of an individual and organisation has been interfered with by a government. That was the point of my letter. You may CHOOSE to BELIEVE that when governments (and other organisations) make a statement like 'Trust us, we're here to help (and won't trample on your rights) ...' that they can be trusted. I CHOOSE not to BELIEVE that, and have given but one example that influenced my belief. I don't trust the 'protections' you mentioned. You can - good on ya! But please don't patronisingly paint me as misunderstanding of democratic process, just because I have a healthy cynicism of government and have taken the time and effort to make that publicly known!

    As for the politically correct BS on polling that now abounds, check out the link and comments below. I know I have risked a never ending round of ‘Duelling Studies’ (or rather ‘Duelling Analysis of Studies’, but these polls can go around in circles forever and still not prove a thing.

    Speaking of which, I believe we've both spent enough on this one small aspect of a much wider debate (or lack thereof, as anyone not on the gay marriage bandwagon is swiftly branded a hate-mongering enemy of the state these days and swiftly shut down - check the link below for outrageous examples of this in a number of allegedly 'democratic' jurisdictioons around the world), and will now, until next time we meet in the public arena, bid you a polite goodbye. Ciao!

    "In 2009, 2010 and 2011, Galaxy was commissioned by Australian Marriage Equality (AME) (brilliantly deceptive name that). AME got what they paid for: the ability to say 62 per cent of Australian voters support gay marriage. How did they do it? Well, no criticism of Galaxy, they just did what they were paid to do. However, AME appears to have:
    • Laid deceptive premises to influence the respondents,
    • Used a loaded warm-up question to promoting a double “Yes”,
    • Used clever wording and an inappropriate response limiter, and
    • Reported on these flawed results to provide an inflated perception of popular support"

  6. Karl

    I'll stand by my use of the term and the spelling "non sequitur". Your conclusion did not follow from the presumptions even if those presumptions had been true. They weren't.

    Your letter was based on false information and faulty reasoning, which is why I called you out on it. If you had just said you don't trust government, rather than trying to back it up with falsehoods, I wouldn't have bothered.

    I examined your link, and failed to be impressed. And I'll remind you of what I said before - that even if a majority were opposed to gay marriage, that still wouldn't be a valid argument against it. We should not be a tyranny of the majority.