“A triumph for ignorant medievalism”

Because the NSW Discrimination Act has ridiculous exemptions in place to enable religious organisations to discriminate against people on the grounds of gender, the NSW Administrative Decisions Tribunal has confirmed that in that state, religious organisations are free to simply ban gays from being foster parents.

Cardinal Pell could hardly contain his glee, breaking out his special “now I get to put people I don’t know down for stupid reasons” smirk.

I only get this smug when I’m about to pointlessly and spitefully discriminate against someone.

The Tribunal suggested parliament should review the law. As the Council of Civil Liberties president Cameron Murphy argued:

Churches who receive taxpayers money to provide services for the state – as was increasingly the case – should no longer be exempt from discrimination laws.

“It’s outrageous,” he said. “If a non-religious organisation tried to do this they would be in breach of the law. If they want to run a foster care agency they ought to be looking after the best interests of the child, not trying to push their religion on the community.”

Exactly – why should taxpayer money (and gay people are taxpayers) be used to discriminate against other citizens?

And again we see the real problem with governments outsourcing their social obligations to private organisations, here relying on churches to find foster care, provide orphanages, hospitals and charities. In my line of work, people charged with drug offences are often given the choice of jail or doing a rehab program run by a religious group – and one which takes advantage of them at a vulnerable time in their life to heavily indoctrinate them while they’re stuck there.

This is wrong. These are all things the state should be providing from our taxes. And if it did, it could bloody well tax religious organisations appropriately without them being able to blackmail it on the basis of the necessary services that they presently supply.

I’m absolutely sick of the state having to pander to “ignorant medievalism” (the phrase of one of the commenters on the News Ltd story) because it won’t do its damn job.

*Discriminating against a couple because they’re gay is discrimination on gender, since you’re discriminating on the basis that one of them isn’t a woman or a man.

4 responses to ““A triumph for ignorant medievalism”

  1. And yet if I refused to serve a Christian because their ignorance goes against everything I believe in, I’d be the one going to court for discrimination.

    I propose a new law: any group that wishes to be exempt from having to follow anti-discrimination laws must also give up the law’s applicability to them. If Christians want to hate on gays to the point of refusing us services, then we should be able to hate on them in the same way.

    I’m sick and fucking tired of taking the high-road, not joining them on their level. The high-road doesn’t feel like it’s getting us very far.

  2. eye for an eye dezinerau?
    that is so ‘old’ testament thinking..
    i think if they judge people, with-hold charity and turn people away from the church or the service, they stop being christians and should not receive benefits from the state for a religion they don’t even follow.
    we should hold them to the same standards they purport to hold others to, maybe with some sort of inquisition…

  3. What’s wrong with applying the Christian “logic” to Christians? They want to deny tax-paying citizens tax-payer funded services then I get to deny them services too. That’s not an eye for an eye, that’s “threat thy neighbour as you would have them treat you.” Since being nice to them doesn’t gain us any favour in their eyes it’s time to start treating them as they treat everybody else: with smug contempt.

  4. i was a little (too) dry, though I agree with your sentiment
    unfortunately the subtle (but very important) difference between ‘an eye for an eye’ and ‘do unto others’ is lost on most christians too ; )
    my not so subtle point is they are not christians!

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