By Kurt Mahlburg
Public life is coarser and more sexualised
A couple years back during that postal plebiscite, 62 percent of Australians voted to legalise same-sex marriage.
During the debate, many warned that if marriage were redefined, a host of injustices would follow. People of faith could lose their jobs, gender-fluid teaching might take over schools, and the freedom to hold a dissenting view would disappear.
Those in favour of same-sex marriage dismissed this as fear-mongering. They insisted that the plebiscite was only about the freedom of loving couples to marry. It was a false ‘slippery slope’ argument, they said, to suggest that other negative consequences could follow.
“Marriage Equality will take nothing from anyone,” declared Tiernan Brady, executive director of the Equality Campaign. Jane Caro loudly proclaimed that a “yes vote won’t affect religious freedom”.
Politicians advocating the “Yes” position echoed these talking points. Federal MP Warren Entsch said, “This bill will take from no-one; it simply makes our nation a kinder and a fairer place.”
Then Attorney-General George Brandis accused “No” campaigners of “trying to turn a debate about… whether same-sex couples should be allowed to marry into a broader debate about religious freedom, because that’s not what this is about”.
But there were others on the “Yes” side who were a little more upfront with their motives.
Roz Ward, a prominent voice in the debate, saw the marriage campaign as part of a much larger strategy to reshape society. “It will only be through a revitalised class struggle and revolutionary change that we can hope for the liberation of LGBTI people,” she said.
Gay activist Benjamin Law declared that legalising same-sex marriage was “far from the last frontier in the battle against homophobia”.
So who was right? Two years on, where has same-sex marriage taken Australia?
Thousands of same-sex couples have married during this time. And for most Australians, life has gone on as usual—it’s true that “the sky hasn’t fallen in”. But it’s not as simple as that.
For those paying attention, it is clear that a host of dark developments have taken place in Australia over the last two years. Some of these even I didn’t see coming, leading me to the conclusion that the views I voiced, read by 20,000 Australians, were somewhat naive.
I am now of the view that, whatever peoples’ motives at the time, redefining marriage really was the ‘thin end of the wedge’ for much broader cultural changes that have taken place since.
Read on and see if you don’t agree.
The freedom to disagree is fast disappearing
Margaret Court is without doubt Australia’s best-ever tennis player. Last month, it was the 50th anniversary of her 1970 Grand Slam, when she made history winning all four majors in a calendar year.
As they’d done for Rod Laver, Tennis Australia had the opportunity to give Margaret Court the red carpet treatment in celebration of her historic record. Instead, TA decided to “recognise but not celebrate” Court, because of her Christian beliefs about marriage.
I have met Margaret Court, and she is a woman of integrity and grace. But simply for holding a view on marriage that differs from our freshly rewritten law, she has become a victim of ‘cancel culture’. This, the most successful female tennis player in the world.
The same can be said of Israel Folau, arguably Australia’s best rugby player. His story is now well-known. He paraphrased a Bible verse about homosexuality on social media, and Rugby Australia sacked him for it. It was no secret that RA’s major sponsor Qantas, whose boss Alan Joyce is gay, played a key role in ending Folau’s career.
Israel Folau took legal action against RA, and eventually the two parties settled out of court. But not before Izzy’s Australian rugby career was destroyed and his reputation trashed by a complicit media.
For Aussies of faith, these two events can’t be shrugged off lightly. If sporting heroes as big as Margaret Court and Israel Folau can be cancelled, what hope is there for the little people who refuse to bow to Big Brother?
Christian schools have found themselves in the crosshairs too.
Soon after marriage was redefined, Ballarat Christian College realised they needed to clarify what they meant by marriage in their statement of faith.
One teacher was unwilling to teach students the Bible’s view on marriage: part-time teacher Rachel Colvin refused to sign the school’s updated statement. She eventually resigned after being unable to find agreement with the school’s leadership.
Equality Australia has since teamed up with Colvin to sue the school for discrimination.
The medical profession is another place that Christians and other dissenters are beginning to feel the pressure.
Dr. David van Gend is a GP from Toowoomba. He is also a Christian. I have met Dr. van Gend, and I found him to be warm, intelligent and courteous.
But last year, after retweeting a couple of posts on Twitter that questioned radical gender ideology, Dr. van Gend was hauled before the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency on professional misconduct charges.
After a nervous nine-month wait, the charges against him were dropped—but without so much as an apology for the all of the anxiety they made him endure.
More broadly in the medical profession, there has been a move by states to outlaw so-called ‘gay conversion therapy’.
Of course this phrase conjures up images of electric shock treatment and other strange methods that were experimented with in a past era. If such horrors were still happening, they should no doubt be banned.
But proposed ‘gay conversion therapy’ laws actually forbid something else entirely. If the bill currently before the Queensland parliament is passed, a doctor, pastor or counsellor could be jailed for 18 months—simply for offering advice or prayer to someone who wanted to get rid of their homosexual attraction.
Drag queens are reading to kids in libraries
This is something I couldn’t have pictured even two short years ago. Around Australia, publicly funded libraries have been organising Drag Queen Story Time events in order to ‘promote diversity and inclusion’.
Social commentator Lyle Shelton recently profiled some of the drag queens being recruited by Australian libraries.
It turns out that Frock Hudson from Melbourne not only reads stories to children—he also posts photos of himself grabbing naked men’s body parts on Facebook.
When Darwin’s Ferocia Coutura and Perri-Oxide from Perth aren’t performing readings in kids libraries, they’re performing BDSM-themed adult shows and posting about it online.
Diamond Good-Rim from Brisbane needs no introduction, since the performing name that children know him by is a reference to a gay sex act.
Note that I am not attacking anyone’s humanity, or even making comment on the choices they make behind closed doors. I’m simply highlighting who our libraries are enlisting to influence our kids in the name of ‘diversity’.
A young man felt strongly enough about this issue to protest one such events at a Brisbane library last month. The media jumped on him and his friends for their peaceful protest. After a barrage of bullying and threats on social media, Wilson Gavin was found dead the next morning.
The link between same-sex marriage and these drag queen library events might seem like a stretch. But it’s not just me connecting the dots.
On their website, the City of Newcastle explains its Pride in Diversity Strategy, which is the rationale for hosting drag queen events at their libraries:
Seventy-five per cent of Novocastrians voted ‘yes’ in the Federal Government’s 2017 Marriage equality plebiscite, the fifth highest vote in NSW’s federal electorates, in line with more than 7 million Australians.
It’s hard not to be cynical. On the one hand, we were assured that the plebiscite was just about two loving people tying the knot. But two years on, the results of that vote are being used to justify much more.
So, the City of Newcastle invited the drag queen Timberlina to one of their events. Away from the library, Timberlina promotes sexually explicit merchandise on his Facebook account, such as a 3D penis keyring and a bag that says, “Ooh up the bum, it’s number one!”
Children are having life-altering sex treatment
In recent years, there has been a sharp spike in the number of children expressing confusion about their gender. A government-funded transgender clinic in Brisbane, for example, recently reported a 330% increase in such cases over the last five years.
At the same hospital, there has been an 85-fold increase in the number of children now taking puberty-blocking drugs—some as young as 12 years of age.
At a Queensland Parliament House forum discussing these issues, feminist Maureen Young said:
“We are in grave danger of repeating some of the mistakes of the past with… sex hormones that will render them infertile and chemically sterile for the rest of their lives.
“The treatments that are being given to children, particularly teenage girls, have no clinical evidence. This treatment and the onset of early gender dysphoria is very recent. We have no longitudinal data to tell us whether it is effective or whether it’s safe.”
All this despite the well-known fact that with the right support, the majority of these kids grow out of their gender confusion.
The current director at Melbourne Royal Children’s Hospital is Michelle Telfer. Telfer is a strong supporter of puberty-blocking drugs, prescribing them to children as young as 10.
A recent expose in The Australian revealed that Telfer is also seeking permanent funding that will enable her clinic to castrate boys and perform double mastectomies on girls. She believes that such surgeries improve the mental health of gender-confused children.
There can be no doubt that the staggering increase in gender confusion among school-aged children is linked to “Safe Schools” programs that have been rolled out in many parts of the country.
In Queensland for example, the ‘Genderbread’ teaching resource introduces students to radical gender theory. Responding to criticism over it, state Education Minister Grace Grace said, “No, it is not political correctness gone mad, this is reality. We have just had the biggest debate about marriage equality.”
Apparently the debate we had two years ago wasn’t just about two people getting married.
In a very short space of time, it has become about the legacies of sports heroes being erased. Christian schools being sued. Drag queens reading to kids in government libraries. Children’s bodies being transformed beyond recognition.
This may be the biggest “I told you so moment” in Australian legal history. Except I can’t say those words, because I was silent when it mattered.
Now I’m speaking up.
My message is simple. It’s the same thing Jesus has been saying for two thousand years, words that gave untold light to our civilisation and can once more:
“From the beginning God made them male and female… This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.”
Kurt Mahlburg is a teacher and freelance writer, writing for the Canberra Declaration and occasionally for the Spectator Australia. He also blogs at kurtmahlburg.blog.
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