ON LINE FIRE: Greens candidate Jeremy Buckingham logs-on to Nationals candidate Robert Griffith’s web site. “I believe it borders on inciting violence against gays.” Photo BETHANY HALLTHE first volley in the battle for Calare has been fired with the Greens launching a stinging attack on National Party candidate for the seat Robert Griffith.
Greens candidate for the Senate, Jeremy Buckingham claims Mr Griffith’s web site is discriminatory and anti-homosexual.
“This [web site] is total nonsense. It’s un-Australian. And I believe it borders on inciting violence against gays and it’s just paranoid to suggest that our community is being dominated by homosexual lobbyists,” he said.
Mr Griffith, a Baptist minister in Orange, dismissed the claims as emotive and groundless.
“The whole issue in terms of marriage has to be taken out of the discrimination debate because at the moment [the Greens] twist it emotively to being gay bashing and discriminating personally against persons who don’t have a heterosexual relationship,” Griffith said.
“It’s emotive nonsense. We are actually discriminating in favour of the vast majority of people who want to protect the institution and the foundation of our society.”
Mr Buckingham, an Orange City councillor, said he was yet to see any gay activists on the streets of Orange.
In May, Prime Minister John Howard’s announced the government would amend the Marriage Act to ban marriages between couples of the same sex.
A ban of gay marriages has been delayed, with the legislation to be considered by a Senate inquiry.
Greens candidate for Calare Stephen Nugent said the web site gave succour to anti-gay elements in society.
“I think it has the potential to insight hatred,” he said.
Mr Griffith’s web site said Australian values had been undermined, redefined, corrupted or replaced by a small minority of militant activists.
“[The activists] have intimidated, coerced and threatened everyone from the man and woman on the street, right through to State and Federal government leaders,” it said.
The comments appear on the web site under the heading “Issues”, where Mr Griffith airs his concerns about the recent debate on amendments to the Marriage Act of 1961.
The web site says when the act was created the society of the day would have found the idea that “same-sex partners could masquerade as real parents and be responsible for raising children as abhorrent to most people.”
“Now here we are over 40 years [on from the act] … in this new ‘enlightened’ age … fighting to save the institution of marriage and the God-ordained structure of families across our nation! How did this happen? How did we allow our nation to get to this point? In this age of ‘tolerance’ and political correctness … where real issues are overshadowed by anti-discrimination and anti-vilification laws, we are facing the very real threat of our whole nation being shaped by a few vocal minority groups,” it said.
“Is this personal discrimination against homosexual people? Absolutely not and that emotive argument needs to be refuted with all our might … I have enjoyed friendships with a number of homosexuals without condoning their lifestyle choice.”
Mr Buckingham said the web site was an attack on tolerance.
“He is saying we are too tolerant as a society. [But] it’s good we’re tolerant Australia is about a fair go for all; it doesn’t matter if you are Pakistani, gay or a lesbian or an Anglo Saxon white heterosexual.”
The web site also says: “We must be on guard against things which come to us under the banner of ‘enlightenment’ and ‘the new age of tolerance’, which are in fact inherently flawed and destructive to the very fabric of our society … traditional marriage between a man and a woman, is to our society, what oxygen is to our body.
“Let’s protect it at all costs … before it is too late and we face consequences in future generations which can and will bring this nation to its knees.”
Mr Griffith added he was pleased to see Mr Buckingham promoting his web site.
This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.