By C. Gwendolyn Landolt National Vice President 2007
REAL Women of Canada
Two views of homosexuality are creating tensions in Canada. Some believe, on the basis of equality, that there should be no distinction drawn in any way by society between homosexual and heterosexual relationships. Others are opposed to homosexuality for practical, medical, moral and/or religious reasons. The “no distinction” approach has dominated primarily because of the decisions of appointed judges and human rights panelists. It was on this basis that the legalization of same-sex marriages was made. Even within the Parliamentary process, the decision was made by a very few individuals. The 19 NDP MPs and the 39 Liberal Cabinet members were ordered by their leaders to vote in support of the proposed same-sex marriage legislation in June, 2005. This deprived their constituents of any representation. The Liberals rammed through the legislation by disallowing any amendments and imposing closure to cut off debate.
Same-sex marriage is now public policy, and has triggered some significant changes.
This new definition of marriage has a profound impact on the welfare of children. A large body of social scientific research indicates that children thrive best with a mother and father who teach them gender identity and sex role expectations. This was the conclusion of a Committee of the French National Assembly, which recommended, in January 2006, that France not accept same-sex marriage due to its detrimental effect on children. The French Committee criticized studies on same-sex parenting that claimed it had no ill effects on children, on the basis that these studies lacked scientific rigor, included inadequate sampling, and showed a lack of objectivity.
Some Canadians point to the fact that same-sex marriages are not functionally equivalent to opposite-sex marriages, but are different in structure, values, and practice. It is widely acknowledged that these differences include the fact that sexual faithfulness is not usually regarded as a requirement in same-sex relationships, but is of vital importance in a heterosexual marriage. Same-sex partners tend to experience a higher incidence of health problems resulting in shorter life spans. The duration of same-sex marriages is shorter than that of opposite-sex relationships: on average, the former last only two to three years. These factors are detrimental to children who require stability in their lives.
A trend resulting from same-sex marriage is evident in the Netherlands, which has allowed homosexual couples to register their partnerships since 1997 and which legalized same-sex marriages in 2000. Statistics show that the out-of-wedlock birthrate there has increased by an average of 2% a year — more than in any other country in Western Europe. This indicates a marked decrease in a desire for legal marriage and increase in cohabitation. According to Statistics Canada, cohabiting relationships are much less stable than legal marriages.
The legalization of same-sex marriage in Canada has caused law and religion to embark on a collision course. The Catholic organization, the Knights of Columbus, in Port Coquitlam, BC, was required to pay a fine for causing “hurt feelings” when it denied the use of the organization’s hall to a lesbian couple to celebrate their “wedding”. A Mennonite-owned summer camp in Manitoba was found guilty of discrimination by the Manitoba Human Rights Commission because it refused to rent its premises to a homosexual choir.
Religion based social services, such as counselling and adoption services, are now required to conform to the same-sex marriage law. The tax-exempt status of churches has become the subject of intimidation and harassment. Bishop Fred Henry of Calgary was threatened by the Canada Revenue Agency with removal of the Roman Catholic churches’ tax-exempt status if he persisted in speaking against same-sex marriage during a federal election. A complaint was also laid against Bishop Henry before the Alberta Human Rights Commission because he issued a pastoral letter opposing same-sex marriage, although subsequently withdrawn, (for the time being), by homosexual activists. Another pastor in Alberta, Stephen Boissoin, who published letters in a local newspaper opposing homosexual practices and same-sex marriage, was the subject of a complaint before the same Tribunal.
Those who favour same-sex marriages are free to speak their views, but those opposed to them are being harassed and coerced into refraining from doing so. This was evident at Toronto’s Ryerson University in June, 2006, when a respected Professor of Ethics from McGill University, Dr. Margaret Somerville, who opposes same-sex marriage, was subjected to public attack, including picketing. Furthermore she was insulted by some of the professors of that institution, who turned their backs on her while she was being presented with an honorary degree.
Within school boards, teachers and other individuals are being forced to deny their religious beliefs and freedom of speech by being required to promote same-sex marriage, and publicly refraining from expressing any opposition to it. A teacher and school counselor in British Columbia, Dr. Chris Kempling published a letter in his local newspaper objecting to homosexuality. This resulted in his suspension for one month without pay by the BC College of Teachers, which alleged that Mr. Kempling’s letters “poisoned the school environment.” There was no evidence to support this, nor was there any complaint made against him by any student, parent or supervisor. Subsequently, Dr. Kempling was a candidate for the Christian Heritage Party in the 2006 federal election, and, in that capacity, published a letter in his local newspaper opposing same-sex marriage. He received a further suspension of three months without pay.
Because of a complaint made before the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal, the government of British Columbia announced in early June that the school curriculum from kindergarten to Grade 12 would be revised to integrate positive homosexual instruction. In a kafkaesque form of events, the revised curriculum is to be subject to the approval of the homosexual activists who laid the complaint! School Boards such as those in Quebec and Ontario, especially in Toronto, Hamilton and London, now require homosexual “education” in their school systems. Such programs do not provide balanced instruction on the issue, and the medical, psychological and legal impact of homosexuality are not mentioned. There is no opportunity for parents to withdraw their children if they disagree with this indoctrination.
As these examples show, these are monumental consequences of same-sex marriage. Are these the changes that Canadians want? Who knows? We’ve never been given the opportunity to express our views.
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Marriage does not include same-sex couples – REAL Women of Canada pamphlet 2012