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Same-sex marriage not recognised on death certificate


Graeme

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I feel very strongly about this and at the risk of upsetting my fellow Aussies, I have spread the following invitation throughout my Facebook thingy:

Join me in refusing to celebrate Australia Day until marriage equality is recognised by all our governments, state and federal.

(Australia Day is the official National Day of Australia. Celebrated annually on 26 January, it marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet of British ...)

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(Australia Day is the official National Day of Australia. Celebrated annually on 26 January, it marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet of British ...)

Question on this. Columbus Day is the anniversary of Christopher Columbus "discovering" the new world. Over the past 20 years or so it has diminished significantly in the US in popularity as native Americans have struggled to get a fair say. Does a similar situation exist in Australia and/or New Zealand?

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The short answer is yes. A number of Aboriginal activists call Australia Day "Invasion Day". However, I don't believe that's gaining a lot of traction. While most educated Australians recognise the legitimate nature of the Aboriginal point of view, the reality is that even most Aborigines don't think it's particularly important. They're more concerned with things like incarceration rates, lower life expectancy, alcohol problems in Aboriginal communities, etc.

It's different for New Zealand. The equivalent in NZ is Waitangi Day, which is celebrating a treaty between the British and the Maori tribes. That treaty still has legal force in New Zealand and grants Maoris certain rights that are enforced.

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Anything which speeds the adoption of marriage equality is welcomed.

The current federal government has a conservative leaning that wants to hold a plebiscite on the question at the next election .

The extremist fundamental minority is making itself heard and there seems to be some fear that any debates will degenerate into hate speech at its most bigoted.

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The current federal government has a conservative leaning that wants to hold a plebiscite on the question at the next election .

Actually, the previous Prime Minister insisted that the plebiscite be after the next election. That is, he wants Australia to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to hold a special nationwide plebiscite to ask if Australia wants same-sex marriage. The 'best' part is that it doesn't matter what the result of the plebiscite is, it has no legally binding power. The High Court has already ruled that the Australian government has the ability to legislate for same-sex marriage -- there's nothing in our constitution that forbids it.

My own concern regarding the plebiscite is that if voting isn't compulsory (it's compulsory for elections, but we've only had a handful of plebiscites in our history and never had one that didn't occur at the same time as an election) then there's a good chance that those who are indifferent will not vote. My personal view is that for the majority of Australians they don't really care, but if they have to make a decision they're in favour of same-sex marriage because they don't see why it shouldn't be allowed. But without being required to vote, they won't because it doesn't affect them and they may not go to the trouble of getting to a polling booth on the day, and that leaves those with a strong opinion on the matter to vote. Things get a lot more uncertain then.

That's why I found the views of the South Australian Premier encouraging. As more and more politicians go public with their views in favour, it puts more pressure on those in charge of the political parties to swing in behind same-sex marriage.

As an aside, our current Prime Minister has previously stated he's in favour (his electorate covers the main gay district in Sydney and he's always been pro-gay), but he's constrained by the views of his party and coalition partner, and there are too many who oppose. If he pushes too hard on the subject, they may band together and depose him. He has to compromise, at least until after the next election.

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