THE campaign in Australia for same-sex marriage was sailing not on a “raft of rainbows but on a barge of bullies”, the Archbishop of Sydney, Dr Glenn Davies, has said.
In an article in a national newspaper, Dr Davies was responding to both recent criticism of some individuals who are presumed to be opposed to same-sex marriage, and to the pro-same-sex marriage interventions by several Australian companies.
Dr Davies argued that a strident minority was trying “to swamp the public debate with its introspective, authoritarian denial of free speech”, which struck “at the heart of Australian democracy”.
The corporate world had been “press-ganged” into supporting same-sex marriage, he said.
“It is a regrettable state of affairs that executives of some of the large public companies have been too weak-kneed to resist the attacks of a strident minority via social media platforms.”
The issue of same-sex marriage is currently not on the Australian government agenda, after the defeat last November by the Senate, the upper house of the federal parliament, of legislation that would have led to a plebiscite on the subject (News, 16 September 2016).
Some Australian companies have written to the Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, urging him to allow the parliament to vote directly on the issue, which, opinion polls have suggested, has widespread support in the Australian population.