10 Questions on Marriage Equality in Australia

The Australian Government has proposed a plebiscite to decide the controversial issue of same-sex marriage which has sparked claims that it will lead to a rise in homophobia in the community.

With the timing and question of the plebiscite yet to be announced, here are 10 not so commonly discussed questions in the same-sex marriage debate.

  1. Why and when did “same-sex marriage” become “marriage equality”?

    The Rainbow Flag representing the LGBTI community. Picture: Wikipedia
  2. Did the homosexual rights movement gain more support when its social standing was elevated to matters of equality?

    LGBTI protester at 2011 Capital Pride Parade – Dupont Circle – Washington, DC. Picture: Wikipedia
  3. Why did sections of the homosexual rights movement in the early 20th century oppose the notion of marriage (perceive same-sex marriage as a threat to homosexual freedoms)?

    Gay rights demonstration in New York City, 1976. Picture: Wikipedia
  4. Is same-sex marriage the final end-game for the homosexual rights movement or what else remains unresolved?

    World laws pertaining to homosexual relationships and expression. – click on graphic for explanatory key. Picture: Wikipedia.


  5. Is “Australian Marriage Equality” the most representative of the pro same-sex marriage side in the campaign?

    Logo of the Australian Marriage Equality organisation. Picture: AME
  6. Rodney Croome, co-founder of “Australian Marriage Equality” says that not all opposition to same-sex marriage is homophobic or bigoted (contradicting the populist view that all opposition is intolerant), can pro same-sex marriage campaign please provide an example of non-homophobic opposition to their campaign?

    Rodney Croome, co-founder of the Australian Marriage Equality organisation. Picture: ABC
  7. Apart from many Conservatives and religious groups, who are the other main opponents of same-sex marriage?

    Many people continue to support the traditional definition of marriage. Picture: Patheos.com
  8. Although the Australian Labor Party’s official policy is in favour of “marriage equality”, a number of its sitting Parliamentary members are opposed – who are they and how will they be treated in the Labor Party?

    Labor promised to legislate for marriage equality in 100 days if elected at the 2016 Federal Election Picture: news.com.au
  9. Many pro same-sex marriage advocates are calling for a free vote in Parliament instead of a plebiscite highlighting that just over 50% of sitting members are in favour. Is the pro same-sex marriage campaign satisfied with the changing of the Marriage Act by a small majority in the vote or should the broader picture be to win support from a larger majority?

    The new Australian parliament shows a majority in support of same-sex marriage for the first time in the nation’s history. Picture: Buzzfeed
  10. What does the Government and the pro same-sex marriage campaign believe should happen to opponents once the Marriage Act is changed?

    JR Nethercote an Adjunct Professor of the Public Policy Institute at the Australian Catholic University has written a column in the Sydney Morning Herald highlighting the importance of a plebiscite on same-sex marriage as part of Australia’s democracy. Read his article: Same-sex marriage plebiscite and the tyranny of the majority. Picture: news.com.au

    Related: An interview with Rodney Croome, co-founder of Australian Marriage Equality

    This article was first published in The Typewriter