The scum who oppose marriage equality

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.

4 comments

  1. ellipsister

    I’m not sure that its fair to say that a person is homophobic because they disagree with Marriage Equality. There are homosexual couples who also expressed their opposition to the bill (although I also accept that number will be in the minority).

    judges and coroners could make submissions “in appropriate circumstances” on well-established technical legal issues

    In regards to Coroner Matenga making a submission, I ‘m not convinced the bit that says “in appropriate circumstances” relates to his personal circumstances but rather to the legal bit following it. I personally would interpret that as meaning Judges and Coroners shouldn’t make submissions on proposed laws relating to their own authority or something similar.

    Coroner Gordon Matenga is a judgmental 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

    As far as I am aware, there is no onus on Coroner Matenga to stand down in cases where his religious views appear in conflict with his duty as a Coroner. Like all judicial officers they have a duty to remain impartial and unbiased. If he were to recuse himself on these grounds, then he would also have to recuse himself from a large proportion of cases that he is required to preside over by law.

    In my view, the link between his submission on Marriage Equality and refusal to hold an inquest for Corporal Douglas Hughes is erroneous as that argument assumes Coroner Matenga has never presided over other cases involving the deaths of LGBT’s and that if he has, that he has refused inquests on all such cases.

    All that being said, I completely disagree with his argument against Marriage Equality not just because I am in complete support of Marriage Equality, but because he claims the legal consequences between a civil union and marriage are no different. While the consequences may not be different recognition at law is. Law has a habit of influencing societal opinion, and by treating LGBT couples as different in law through denying them the right to recognition as a ‘married’ couple only enables those in society who currently disagree with Marriage Equality to treat LGBT couples differently outside the law.

    • QoT

      Some people oppose marriage equality for reasons to do with opposing the entire role of the state in marriage. They are by far in the minority. The rest? Blatantly homophobic, even if they want to wrap it up in “but we just think marriage is so ~SPECIAL~ that gay people don’t deserve it” giftwrap.

      You are misrepresenting the quote on coroners making submissions when you ignore the entire “ON WELL-ESTABLISHED TECHNICAL LEGAL ISSUES” part of it. Denying same-sex couples equality on the basis of unproven bigotry isn’t a well-established technical legal issue.

      There may be no “onus” on Coroner Matenga to do anything. He has every right to paint himself as a scary homophobe who wants to cover up a young man’s suicide. I’m not making any assumption other than: he submitted against marriage equality citing bigoted bullshit (AGAINST the professional expectations laid out by the Attorney-General); he refused this inquest. He’s making himself look like a bigot. I’m just pointing that out.

    • Tornado Rex

      What are the differences in the legal entitlements stemming from civil unions and marriage?