By the Most Rev. Anthony Fisher, O.P., Archbishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney
The campaign to redefine marriage has recently gained such momentum – with now three and soon four bills before the Commonwealth Parliament – that many think it is inevitable. This can leave those with misgivings feeling that they are already losers in a done deal.
Some think it is the inexorable progress of liberty and equality – which leaves the doubters on “the wrong side of history.”
In this context supporters of classical marriage are presumed to have no real arguments to offer. So here I want to offer some reasons – not decrees from on high or from the past, not expressions of hatred or prejudice – but reasons I hope anyone can understand. I also hope these reasons prove persuasive and helpful in proclaiming and witnessing to true marriage among families, friends and colleagues.
Regardless, I hope this will help explain why Australian law has always held, and many people still hold, that marriage is for people of opposite sex.
I will examine five common slogans in this debate – that it is all about justice, that sexual differences do not matter, that it is all about love, that it is all about the numbers and that it does not affect me. Along the way, I will be offering some reasons for preserving the classical understanding of marriage rather than redefining it to include same-sex “marriage” (SSM).