Nice news first: Kevin Hague MP laughs at Bob McCoskrie’s latest derail attempt on the marriage equality debate.
It’s true that there were people who would have liked to make an oral submission who did not get a chance to (probably more in favour than against, in fact). But I am absolutely confident that every member of the Committee, both those in favour of and against the Bill, would put hand on heart to say that the submissions we heard were a fair reflection of the entire range of arguments that submitters made in their written submissions.
Yes, I personally cannot imagine why the Select Committee would have deprived themselves of the chance to have several hundred more oral submissions from confused-looking people whose arguments essentially boil down to “because Colin Craig, um, said gay people will steal our churches, um.”
In less amusing news, it looks like coroner Gordon Matenga is a judgemental scumbag who at the very least should have recused himself from the case of Corporal Douglas Hughes, so as to avoid any impression people might get that his rampant religious homophobia influenced his decision not to order a full inquest.
But given that he decided to make a submission against the Marriage Equality Bill which refers to same-sex marriage as a “social experiment” – despite Attorney-General Chris Finlayson’s wonderfully carefully-worded advice that
judges and coroners could make submissions “in appropriate circumstances” on well-established technical legal issues
… we are clearly not dealing with someone who can be relied upon to exercise basic ethical judgement.
The full text of Matenga’s submission is here. You will note the classic religious fundamentalist line, “it’s bad because I say it’s bad and that makes it bad”, forms the bulk of his argument, and that he thinks the human right involved in this debate is “freedom of association“, because men loving other men and women loving other women is exactly the same as joining a union. Or a religion.