Posted by: jkirkby8712 | August 18, 2011

Wednesday, 17th August 2011 – politics in the environment and matrimony!

I would have gladly remained where I was this morning, as 5.30am came around – in bed –  but duty calls, albeit occasionally reluctantly, and within the hour, I was on my way back to my ‘second home’, the radio station, to present my weekly brief 10 minute local sports result report from the past weekend’s competitions [and we usually manage to get in a few racing tips for that day’s horse racing meeting in Victoria – today, a nine race meeting down at Ballarat, where I imagine, it will be rather chilly and windy, if present conditions in Sunbury were any indication].


On the work environment, our Auditor finished his examination of the annual accounts much earlier than usual, which pleased me – more time to prepare the audited financial statements for incorporation into the Annual Report which will be the major focus of the office over the next couple of weeks! It was a pity that the Auditor for the radio station hadn’t been equally efficient – as noted on these pages, we had our annual meeting last week, but even today, no advice that the audit is complete. Not that it seemed to worry the membership very much!!   But I know for a fact that the radio audit could be easily completed in less than an hour, and the books were handed over in the first week of July!  No doubt, there’ll be no noticeable reduction in the value of the resultant invoice!!


A little quotation, which I thought worth keeping, arrival with today’s email from the Uniting Churches’ Earth Team unit, a segment of the church which concentrates it’s efforts on the environment, and the ways in which the Christian Church can play a role in today’s ‘climate’ of  renewable energy, environmental  concerns, climate change, carbon emissions, etc!  I was directly involved with them some years ago, went along to a couple of meetings, and took a close interest in some of the group’s resultant publications. But time and distance  and the associated travelling,   combined with various other commitments restricted that interest to a large degree. But I’ve maintained some element of contact through the email system. Today’s information included the words [written by a John Muir  –  “Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.”  Wise words, but unfortunately, as with so many such sayings, they have a little bit too much optimism  attached to their message!! Then again, perhaps we can never have enough optimism.


Federal Parliament in Canberra resumed this week, and it was expected that the usual ‘hostilities’ would resume, with the ongoing debates over things like the carbon tax, or refugees, or livestock exports. But oddly, emphasise [from the Opposition anyway] was on another ‘anniversary of a ‘promise’ of Julia Gillard and/or the Treasurer, true, it was related to the ‘no carbon tax under my government’ statement, but more on the question of ‘lies’ and ‘mistrust’, etc. It would be nice and get beyond that. The other area of debate rearing it’s head, again, concerns the subject of homosexual marriage, with both sides of politics have so far refused to go down that path, i.e., recognition thereof. I’ve my view clear here in the past –  and while I have no empathy with the kind of extreme comments mentioned below, I still maintain that marriage was intended between a man and a woman, that is my Christian interpretation of it anyway.  I have no concerns a legal recognition  of such a partnership, but  back off from accepting that such a relationship be called a marriage.  However, according to various polls, etc, a majority of Australians would accept the concept of a formal recognition of homosexual partnerships as a ‘marriage’ with all the same meaning and rights as a traditional marriage. So be it, I seem to be within the minority view. Interesting, that at the same time as this is happening, Senator Penny Wong, and her female partner have just announced that they are going to have a baby, and while this announcement has drawn much support, it has also lead to the kind of comments around the issue of a child being raised by two ‘women’ and the disadvantages of not having a father in his or her life.  I won’t be drawn on that one, despite a slight personal leaning towards that view, while noting at the same time, that in this age of broken marriages, defacto relationships, etc, thousands of children today, are raised in single parent families, or as a part of disjointed and mixed relationships  – which situation might provide the argument that such children could be considered to be better off under a stable relationship between two adults irrespective of the sex of those adults, in preference to a broken marriage with a single parent!  Plenty of arguments can be raised in either direction there, I believe!


Anyway, with that question ion mind, this what the GetUp organised came up with today, in it’s latest email to me:-

Dear Bill, “It won’t stop at homosexual marriage – look for polygamy and marriage between adults and children to be legalised. There is no greater dream for a paedophile than to be able to legally acclaim a child as his lover.”    That’s what keynote speaker Rebecca Hagelin declared yesterday at the “don’t meddle with marriage” event at Parliament House, as she was joined on stage by Barnaby Joyce and other conservative Australian politicians. She said there is “no greater evil” than legalising same-sex marriage, and told the crowd to join her in a “war for the future of the human race.”

In response to that, GetUp then goes on to say  –  ‘These sorts of disgusting comments are far beyond the pale in Australia but unfortunately, they are exactly the messages local politicians are being inundated with right now, by an extreme and vocal minority. They’ve been calling, faxing, emailing and visiting MPs telling them that those in same-sex couples don’t deserve the right to marry.  We have one week to send a message to MPs, to our communities and importantly – to our gay and lesbian family and friends – that these people don’t speak for us. That’s when local MPs will report back to Parliament on what their electorate has told them about marriage equality. Regardless of where our MP personally stands on marriage equality, we can’t let these hateful messages dominate their reports.  Sign our petition and before MPs meet next week we will both print the result in an un-missable full-page newspaper ad and deliver it to their office to ensure they hear the message’.

 Well no, GetUp, I won’t be signing your petition this time, because I get the feeling that if you don’t agree completely with the views of one side, you are been categorised as one of the extreme and vocal minority!  I certainly don’t consider myself to be either extreme or vocal in my beliefs, and I do like to look at both sides of any debate. So often, your causes come across as very one sided, and I immediately find that kind of attitude gets this reader offside!




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