Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: The Up-Front Guides: The Weasel Translator

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  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Gareth Ward,

    Key’s particular phrasing around “won’t affect my marriage” recalls that awful Herald front page

    And it’s also a direct and non-weasely counter to the most glib and intellectually dishonest argument Colin Craig et. al. are going to trot out along with “oy noes, it’s the radical homosexual agenda to ‘redefine’ what marriage has always been’.

    Really, Colin, if my pansy arse entering into a civil marriage is going to destroy your connubial bliss may I respectfully suggest that I’m the least of your problems?

    As for the idiotic idea that marriage equality radically re-defines an immutable, changeless marriage can I ask these questions.

    When my parents wed, inter-racial marriages were not only illegal in the Republic of South Africa but inter-racial sex was criminal. Both laws were repealed in the 1990s, and whose marriages were threatened there?

    Before 1982 (IIRC), a man could not be charged with raping his spouse. That “redefined marriage”, but if anyone wants to argue that’s a bad thing don’t do it in my ear shot.

    How about no-fault divorce?

    Or our laws and social customs frowning on marrying (and impregnating) young girls as soon as they hit puberty? If you constantly want to appeal to historical authority, you better be ready to go some ugly and creepy places.

    And don't even get me fucking started on the idea that marriage equality is some kind of vicious assault on "religious freedom". Personally, I'm pretty comfortable living in a country that forbids all kinds of faith-based barbarity -- from human sacrifice to genital mutilation of young girls.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Angus Robertson,

    "I've not given it any thought."

    I haven't survived this long in politics by thinking about things.

    Auckland • Since May 2007 • 984 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    He's left himself a little out

    He has, notes GayExpress. Story includes link to original audio of Key talking with Marcus Lush about the matter.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19680 posts Report Reply

  • simon g,

    "Sir Ian McKellen on the phone, Prime Minister."

    "Ooh, Celeb City! And a knight! Put him through, Cabinet can wait!"

    *picks up phone*

    "Your highness, this is an honour!"

    "Ah, hello there, Hel- oh hang on, you're the new one, aren't you? Well, Prime Minister, I just wanted a quick word about this gay marriage business ..."

    "Yes, Sir Gandalf!"

    "I am so looking forward to the Hobbit premiere ..."

    "The first of three, Sir! Maybe five, if we get a third term!"

    "Oh God, really? Anyway, I would hate to miss - or, as the media would so cruelly say, boycott the Premiere. I do love Wellington. Any reason I might have to ... stay away? In protest?"

    "None at all, Sir! I will personally welcome you with open arms ... er, not that I'm ... but some of my best friends ... and in the All Blacks' dressing room I did get a bit excited ... but, anyway, um, where was I? Oh, yes. Marriage? Gay, straight, elves, hobbits, whatever. Totally down with that."

    "Thank you, Prime Minister. Regards to Helen."

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1319 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Could somebody please explain to me what mechanism has been used to deny same sex couples a marriage licence – given that the Marriage Act doesn’t actually stop that occurring?

    The case is Quilter v Attorney-General (Court of Appeal in 1997, reported in 1998 I think).

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to simon g,

    Are you suggesting Gandalf is gay?!?! He just likes wearing dresses and pretty fireworks and parties and ...

    oh

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4450 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    It's not a dress - it's a mystic caftan and straight men have unnaturally glossy flowing hair too.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Gandalf is not gay. He's just really busy, and a bit too old for any carry on of any kind. Ian McKellen, however, makes a mockery of such pitiful excuses.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10630 posts Report Reply

  • Tess Rooney, in reply to steve gray,

    So if we keep the definition of marriage as a man and a woman it's the fault of filthy, filthy religion. But if we change the definition to include two people of any gender it's also the fault of filthy, filthy religion.

    Let me guess, religion shot JFK, faked the moon landings, and got Muldoon drunk and then forced him to call a snap election.

    Since May 2009 • 267 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    Tess: Muldoon was always drunk

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2605 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __, in reply to Tess Rooney,

    So if we keep the definition of marriage as a man and a woman it’s the fault of filthy, filthy religion. But if we change the definition to include two people of any gender it’s also the fault of filthy, filthy religion.

    Huh? I’m not understanding what you mean?

    Edit: Oh OK I found the relevant bit. Personally, I think if the State recognises and regulates marriage, then it's a civil more than a religious institution.

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3887 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Nice work, whoever gave Family First's anti-gay marriage site some DoS love...
    Meanwhile the "Christians" are still in denial over David and Jonathan claiming they were just 'really tight combat buds...'

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7886 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Lilith __,

    Personally, I think if the State recognises and regulates marriage, then it’s a civil more than a religious institution.

    Oh of course it bloody is... Unless I've epically misread the relevant sections of canon law, I couldn't get married in a Catholic rite even if David was a woman. Because of the perfectly sensible reason that he's not Catholic and has no intention of converting in this or any other lifetime. Nor, as far as I'm aware, does the Catholic Church recognize civil marriage or any other form solemnized by other faiths,

    Which, as an intriguing sidebar, was the loophole divorcee Nicole Kidman flung herself through to have her second go-round conducted by a Catholic priest. Here's an interesting passage from the linked story:

    The Catholic Church began to make annulments easier to get in the 1970s, adding a category of "psychological grounds", which includes "lack of due discretion" - in other words, an applicant might claim they'd not fully appreciated the responsibilities of marriage.

    Today, this category - which also takes in "psychological incapacity assuming the obligations" - is the main grounds upon which annulments are granted.

    Lack of due discretion centres on the question of what it is that couples are consenting to when they agree to marry.

    Priests say considering a petition for annulment on such grounds is very complex - and requests for annulments are often turned down (in which case an applicant cannot remarry in a Catholic church).

    While many in the Church argue priests should be trying to discern a "grave" lack of discretion, some argue that priests, particularly those in the US, are too easy.

    According to the Holy See, 43,153 straightforward annulments were granted worldwide, almost 29,000 of which were issued in north America in 2003. This compares with 511 in Great Britain and 304 across Ireland. Many of these were later overturned by the Vatican.

    Rome has long been concerned that priests in the US are handing out too many annulments.

    The Vatican argues that American culture demands maximum self-fulfilment and that includes what can be expected from a marriage. As a result, more annulments are granted in the US, leaving Rome worried that the Americans are, essentially, letting divorce in through the back door.

    But I'm the one weakening the institution of marriage by wanting access to civil marriage the Catholic Church doesn't recognize anyway? Weird...

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    And here's my favourite faith-based weaseling around marriage equality. Last month, former Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey thundered that marriage equality in the UK would be "a threat to the bonds of Church and state". Yes, not only an act of "cultural vandalism" but an assault on the Constitution itself.

    Tradition and constitutional niceties could go fuck themsleves, however, when Lord Carey was exhorting us all to "get behind Charles and Camilla" -- because it's different when a notorious adulterer and divorcee makes an honest woman of his long-time mistress, innit?

    "I believe the country should get behind Prince Charles. I think it's good for Prince Charles and Mrs Parker Bowles.

    "I think it's good for the country because it's important that at the heart of the monarchy we have stable relationships, and therefore I do believe that we in the country should get behind them and welcome this relationship, this marriage, support them, and all Christians to pray for them both in the run up to the wedding and afterwards."

    Nor do I recall Lord Carey declining to attend the solemn blessing of the (civil) re-marriage of these divorced persons by the Archbishop of Canterbury, in St George's Chapel, Windsor, in the presence of the Supreme Governor of the Church of England and Defender of the Faith (and mother of the groom).

    Hypocritical douchebag.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22747 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Russell Brown,

    With the usual "the devil's in the details" caveats, well done. Now cue the anguished wails of "oh, you're playing right into Romney's hands with this irrelevant distraction" from the usual suspects. :)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    If/when the bill gets passed and same-sex marriage is legal in Aotearoa, will churches be forced to enact the ceremonies?

    Much of the opposition appears to be centred around religion and being married in a church is not the only way to get married. If there is no legal compunction for churches to enact same-sex weddings surely their objection is essentially null? (I can stil see them decrying the 'devaluation' of marriage, despite love of fellow man being a fairly basic tenet of the Christian faith.)
    And I completely fail to see how same-sex marriage can compromise the sanctity, or any other subjective quality, of the nay-sayers' relationships... Has it become a zero-sum game? Are they only defined by how different from teh gayz they are?

    Te Ika A Maui - Whakatane… • Since Oct 2008 • 577 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Nice work,

    Not really, because it allows Bob McCoskrie to be quoted thusly in the Herald:

    "You always hope you can have a robust debate about ideas, and show respect for each other but when you're trying to take out each other's website it kind of suggests that you're not going to get a good debate, so that's disappointing."

    And all of a sudden he looks fair and reasonable and the victim of bullying.

    Now, I don't for a second believe that his idea of robust debate involves fairness or rationality, but whatever, he's entitled to express his views, no matter how obnoxious, and this DOS attack is no different from shouting him down. Doesn't really help.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh, in reply to Stewart,

    If/when the bill gets passed and same-sex marriage is legal in Aotearoa, will churches be forced to enact the ceremonies?

    My impression was that Louisa Wall had stated clearly that the churches (and hopefully mosques, synagogues, temples, etc as well) would not be forced to conduct same-sex marriages.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Stewart,

    If/when the bill gets passed and same-sex marriage is legal in Aotearoa, will churches be forced to enact the ceremonies?

    No. They're already not forced to enact opposite-sex marriage ceremonies they disapprove of - ie the Catholic church is allowed to refuse to marry non-Catholics.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4650 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    Thank you Chris and Emma for that clarification.

    I trust everyone ignores the objections from the church corner - they're already sorted!

    Te Ika A Maui - Whakatane… • Since Oct 2008 • 577 posts Report Reply

  • simon g,

    OK, next question ... which select committee would the bill go to, and who is on it?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1319 posts Report Reply

  • Gee, in reply to Emma Hart,

    Finally got a reply from Nicky Wagner. Her response to the question "are you going to stand up for Christchurch Central and vote 'Yes'?" was

    Absolutely

    Hoorah! (forgive me if she's said this publicly in the last day or two and I didn't see it.)

    Canada, eh • Since May 2011 • 78 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Now, I don’t for a second believe that his idea of robust debate involves fairness or rationality, but whatever, he’s entitled to express his views, no matter how obnoxious, and this DOS attack is no different from shouting him down. Doesn’t really help.

    Yup - a useful variant on "don't feed the trolls" is "please don't make the poor petal's martyr complex any bigger".

    If/when the bill gets passed and same-sex marriage is legal in Aotearoa, will churches be forced to enact the ceremonies?

    What Emma said, and I'll add this. Any cleric who tries to frame marriage equality as an "attack on religious freedom" is just lying - and when I went to parochial school, I'm pretty sure fibbing was high on the list of things that made God cranky.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Gee,

    Hoorah! (forgive me if she's said this publicly in the last day or two and I didn't see it.)

    I am gob-smacked, Gee, well done. And yeah, at least as of this morning she was still down at marriageequality as being "unknown".

    Given she voted in favour of defining marriage as being 'one man one woman'... well, something has changed.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4650 posts Report Reply

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