More marriage editorials

More editorials on the passing of the marriage equality bill (see also the previous editorial roundup – Mixed marriage equality editorials).

Taranaki Daily News – Wall’s work makes more equality

George Orwell in Animal Farm wrote: “All animals are created equal, but some animals are more equal than others”.

In New Zealand society the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community has always been less equal than others. The phrase consenting adults did not apply to homosexuals until 1985.

When, in 2004 they were permitted to enter a civil union, it made them equal, but not as equal as heterosexuals, who could marry.

On Tuesday that changed with the passing of the marriage equality bill.

We suspect that  those MPs who opposed it, including the three National MPs whose electorates cover Taranaki, will one day conclude they should have voted yes this week.

Nelson Mail – Love warms House – and life will go on

Emotions often run high in Parliament, but love is not usually among them.

However, on Wednesday night, love was in the air in the debating chamber that usually plays host to conflict.

It came in the words of MPs voting for Louisa Wall’s marriage equality bill, and from couples holding hands in the packed public gallery.

Hugs, flowers and even a surprisingly tuneful mass version of Pokarekare Ana from the gallery added to the mood.

In the end the controversial Definition of Marriage Amendment Bill passed with a polite, at times, humorous debate.

Taking the final step is logical and has carried on a long New Zealand tradition of being at the forefront of social change, from universal suffrage and state welfare.

Southland Times – In good conscience

When Parliament passed Louisa Wall’s Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill on Wednesday night, it was a conscience vote worthy of the description.

The bill succeeded, as it deserved to, because it reflects the view – the gradually changed view – of a nation which recognises a crusty piece of old-style discrimination when it sees it.

It is a nation once repelled by homosexuality, but now far more uncomfortable with the morality, or perhaps just the meanness, of deeming that the inclusion of our family, friends or selves in committed same-sex relationships would debase the state of marriage.

Because why? Inappropriateness? Unworthiness? Unholiness? Most members of Parliament, if they went down that line of thinking at all, turned from it.

The debate was strikingly different from the thundering rancour during the 1986 homosexual law reform debate, and perceptibly more respectful of each other’s sincerity than in the civil union debate in 2004.

The great majority of the speakers on Wednesday were thoughtful and sincere. Both sides should recognise that.

1 Comment

  1. Brown

     /  April 20, 2013

    …polite, at times, humorous debate.” That’s because it was going to pass. Had it been a loser you would have seen what real self indulgence, lack of respect and not being allowed your own way looks like. Some religious zealots would have been no better of course pretending to be theologians. The sun would still have risen etc…