In responding to the invitation to comment on the deliberations of the Religious Freedom Review, I would like to submit the following comments for consideration:
A law is acceptable, not merely because the legislation agrees with my rights. It is right only if the rights of all Australians are addressed and accepted.
Laws are good laws when they address the needs and aspirations of all the people, not merely the powerful.
Laws are inadequate where they fail to recognise the possibility that the frail, the weak, the disenfranchised, and those of minority opinion, will be affected adversely.
Laws are draconian where the democratic rights of individuals are thwarted. There is a clear distinction between dictatorship and democracy.
Laws are vindictive where they are designed to curtail the right and freedom of speech and expression.
Laws are blind where they fail to acknowledge that the perceived intention to enforce a negative slant of opinion upon the traditional norms of society and our time-honoured heritage is cast to the dust heap of ‘past’ ethical principles.
A law is felonious where parents may not intervene against unwanted, undue, unorthodox, and/or unacceptable intrusions which degrade society’s norms for the hidden agenda of replacing heritage for heresy.
Laws should address gender balance more adequately to ensure the well-being and security of all Australians regardless of sexual preferences.
Unintended outcomes of present deliberations may include:
* Clergy forced to sanctify the union of same-sex couples by conducting “marriages” against their clearly stated ethical principles. Union: Yes! (such may indeed be sanctified). However, it must be acknowledged that marriage is “the legal union of a man and a woman” (Oxford dictionary).
* Parents’ responsibility to raise their children to adhere to the highest standards of sexual morality negated.
* Children forced to absorb modes of behaviour aberrant to recognised behaviour patterns.
* School curriculum shaped to appease the agenda of the factions to the detriment of society norms.
* Teachers selected on the basis of personal preference, perspectives and attitudes, and able to “push” their own agendas.
* The unforeseen consequences of immorality, paedophilia, and disintegration of society norms that are burgeoning at an increasing rate in the Australian community are swiftly becoming more aligned to an emerging ‘norm’.
Please give earnest consideration to these matters. The Christian ethic has provided this nation with strong, stable foundations which are the envy of all nations. We flout its values, its guiding principles, at our peril as we ‘sail’ into uncharted waters.
Ms Lucille L. Turfrey, OAM