“You can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you might find, you get what you need.” Regardless of whether you love or hate the Rolling Stones, their song’s lyrics are an uncanny description of the ‘Yes’ campaign’s entire message and goal.
Championing “marriage equality,” advocates of the ‘Yes’ vote claim that they want marriage to be redefined in order to achieve equal rights for all Australians. Ironically, they already have these “rights” – and they have had them for over a decade:
In 2006, in order to address inequality between the legal rights and responsibilities of same-sex and opposite sex couples, the Australian Human Rights Commission (Commission) launched an inquiry aimed at identifying federal laws which discriminated against same-sex couples and their children, and produced a report which included recommendations to address these inequalities.
As a result of the recommendations, 84 federal laws were amended to ensure that equality of treatment was achieved.
Importantly, the Commission addressed the question of whether the legalisation of same-sex marriage was needed to ensure equal rights. In relation to this question, the final report reads:
However, the focus of this Inquiry has been to make sure that all couples in Australia have the same access to basic entitlements like tax concessions, superannuation death benefits, carer’s leave, workers’ compensation, veterans’ entitlements and aged care. An opposite-sex couple does not have to marry to get those entitlements; nor should a same-sex couple have to marry. So, while same-sex marriage or civil unions could assist those couples who choose to formalise their relationship in that way, this Inquiry has focussed on ensuring that all couples have all the same rights whether or not they are married.
The report confirms that the redefinition of marriage is not required to ensure equal treatment at law, asserting further that the rights of couples should not be dependent on marital status.
The ‘Yes’ campaign’s demands for “equality” were met long ago – they just don’t realise it. What they are advocating for is vastly different than “marriage equality” – they want total overhaul of marriage. If they really cared about “equality,” they should be putting their efforts into ensuring that all same-sex couples in Australia know of their already existing legal rights, and how to enact them.
Clearly, the ‘Yes’ campaign is not satisfied with its “need” for “marriage equality” – they are after total control of the legal definition of marriage. They are after total overhaul of the single institution that encourages, protects, and defends the family, Australia’s foundation institution.
If a ‘Yes’ vote wins, they will get what they want – but Australians will not get what they need. Instead, Australians will lose their freedoms.
Read more: CONSEQUENCES: CHANGING THE LAW ON MARRIAGE AFFECTS EVERYONE, Same-sex relationships in Australia, pages 11-12