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Separation of Church and State and of the LNP and Reality

“Separation of church and state, does not mean the inoculation of the influence of faith on the state.”

Scott Morrison

Which begs the question, what does the separation of church and state mean? 

Well, according to the Liberals it’s a rather fluid thing. For example, when Christian churches criticise Coalition policies, then they should just butt out because they should be dealign with spiritual matters. And as for those Imams, well, if they don’t like the way things are, then they should just bugger off. However, it’s entirely appropriate for churches and other religious organizations to be commenting on anything where they agree with current government policy.

I guess the strange thing for me is this idea that civil celebrants should be able to refuse to marry gay couples. Apart from the obvious point that, if a civil celebrant were to simply express the view to a gay couple that it was against their religious beliefs, it’s hard to imagine that a gay couple would want to be married by that person. I mean, you’d hardly want someone snidely asking, “If any one knows any just cause or impediment why these two should not be joined together, let him declare it… Anyone? Anyone? Ok, going once, going twice… I mean, have a think about it, we’ve got time” on your wedding day.

But even without declaring their opposition, it’s hard to imagine a civil celebrant being forced to conduct a cerermony against their will. One has to book a civll celebrant. If he or she says, that the day is unsuitable, it’s not like you have a right to see their diary and go through it until you can say, “Ah ha. You have a free space on December 25th. We demand to marry then, because even though it’ll be impossible to book a place for the reception, the most important thing is that we book a civil celebrant who has religious objections to our special day. Not only that but we’re inviting Tony Abbott and demanding that he come and bring George Pell as his date.”

Of course, it is important to see that the people’s rights are protected. And this is a great thing. It’s quite an epiphany for the Liberals: acknowledging that just because a side lost the vote, that doesn’t mean we should ignore them. Does this mean an end to we won the election so Labor and The Greens should just shut up and let everything through the Senate?  Let’s see how this applies to the Bennelong by-election. If more than forty percent of people vote against John Alexander, does this mean that he should take that on board and vote against the government forty percent of the time. Of course, this presupposes John Alexander actually wins which, given the accident prone nature of Turnbull’s Terriers, is no certainty ten days out with a week of Parliament to sit.

On a side note, I must say that I liked Malcolm Turnbull’s demand that Shorten remove Dastyari from the Senate. Now, if he’d demanded that he kick him out of the Labor Party, he may have had an arguable case, but political leaders can’t kick someone out Parliament whenever it suits them. I mean, why didn’t Malcolm kick Cory Bernardi out when he left the party after he dumped them within days of being re-elected? However, what Turnbull actually asked Bill to do can only mean one of two things: He was playing politics and trying to make Shorten look weak, or Malcolm has no idea how things actually work.

Actually, you’re right. It means both of those things.

Anyway, amongst all the celebrations, I can’t help but notice that the marriage equality legislation hasn’t actually been passed yet. I mean, I know that it’s being debated. And I know that Malcolm has promised that it will be done by Christmas. Ho ho ho…But I can’t help but feel that there’s a danger in placing too much faith in Malcolm being able to follow through on anything. After all, he is suggesting that he’s going to vote to religious freedoms even though he thinks it’s unnecessary. You have to admire a man with that sort of conviction. If just one amendment gets through, the whole thing will have to go back to the Senate.

Mm, I was going to write about Milo Yiannopoulos and wonder why people are protesting him. I mean, I know why people are protesting him, but I can’t help but feel that protesting him is only giving him the publicity he desparately seeks. Without all the protests, he’d just be another typical pathetic attention-seeker who’d had a book deal cancelled because of his support for paedophilia. While in Australia, he’s complained that our indigenous population never invented the wheel, which is a strange criticism given that he didn’t either. Just your average right-winger really.

However, then I realised the irony about writing a whole article complaining about all the attention he’s been given.

 


24 comments

  1. Andrew J. Smith

    A bill of rights would guarantee freedoms for conservative evangelical Christians; but so would everybodies’, hence unacceptable.

  2. jim

    Good post, and when we quit arguing among ourselves our world is changing fast and it’s sad to say, not for the better, the EU is crumbling as a thing, see V4 visgrad Nigel Farage , media black in Sweden ,hand grenades in trash bins
    .
    IMHO the EU is a US owned big business, with highly paid members lying for whom ever and the money.

    The EU thing that if it succeeded is coming “for” Australia.
    On Q&A .Eric Abetzz shammed Labor ABC on you started it all (detention for ever), Why oh why the fuck didn’t they mention little Joni coward who started off shore in 2001 the LNP< started off shore detention forever.
    It’s obvious on Q&A there lips were sealed, for on water matters ya see.

  3. jimhaz

    The US has been plans for Non-Separation of Church and State.

    “When we wrote about Drollinger in July, we noted that he teaches that God only hears the prayers of Christians, that Christians in government have an obligation to only hire other Christians, and that social welfare programs are un-Christian. That kind of exclusionary theology and dominionist worldview haven’t gotten Drollinger into any trouble with the Trump administration or his other admirers, and they don’t seem to be slowing his expansion.

    In a recorded speech to the Hillsboro, Oregon Prayer Breakfast in October, Drollinger said there are 12 Cabinet members taking part in the weekly White House Bible studies, and about 30 House members and 12 senators taking part in the congressional versions. Drollinger and his Capitol Ministries have big growth plans”

    http://www.rightwingwatch.org/post/leader-of-trump-cabinet-bible-studies-aggressively-expanding-right-wing-proselytizing-to-government-officials/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=rww&utm_campaign=bestof

  4. helvityni

    “Don’t forget to hate refugees as you set up a nativity scene.”

    I will not be setting up any nativity scenes, all the same my very generous sense of humour, will not allow me to find that little statement funny…it’s ugly and offensive….

  5. jim

    And GW bush “and an angel wafts in and guides our bombs to the terrorists”.

  6. Terry2

    Listening to the debate on marriage equality in the House of Representatives it is noticeable that those on the LNP side appear to have been instructed to have a kick at Labor when delivering their personal statements.

    Principally they seem to be saying that had Labor gone along with Abbott’s plebiscite it would all be done and dusted by now. But surely had the parliament voted on this simple change to the Marriage Act we would have avoided all of this carry-on ?

  7. Andrew J. Smith

    UK and Australia have become too influenced by a resurgence in old WASP nativism and corporatism of the US for the top 0.1%, playing up to demographic change and fears via MSM of ageing conservative electorates.

  8. OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES!

    Andrew J Smith. ‘A bill of rights would guarantee freedoms for conservative evangelical Christians; but so would every bodies’, hence unacceptable’. Our current Constitution already does this.

    “UK and Australia have become too influenced by a resurgence in old WASP nativism and corporatism of the US for the top 0.1%,” I would say most of the 0.1% was not wasp and would most likely be of the jewish persuasion or even rich arabians. Hence, your statement is likely inaccurate and probably racist

  9. Andrew J. Smith

    Australia is one of the few democracies lacking a bill of rights; wtf do Jews and Arabs have to do with anything? Just another example of why Australians are viewed as ignorant, arrogant, shallow and racist, what’s next slag off Sir John Monash?

  10. margcal

    “…. For example, when Christian churches criticise Coalition policies, then they should just butt out because they should be dealign with spiritual matters. And as for those Imams, well, if they don’t like the way things are, then they should just bugger off. However, it’s entirely appropriate for churches and other religious organizations to be commenting on anything where they agree with current government policy.”

    Sounds rather like atheists here …. bag people of faith big time when they disagree with them but grab their coat-tails if a church/mosque member has got a quote that suits the atheist argument.

  11. corvus boreus

    I broadly agree with Scott Morrisons statement regarding the definitive relationship between state and church.
    The meaning of ‘Inoculation’ is entirely different from the meaning of ‘separation’.
    ‘Inoculation’ means limited exposure to pathogenic/malignant influences in order to stimulate the development of natural defenses.
    ‘Separation’ means the imposition of physical barriers/distance that prevent influential interaction from occurring between different objects/entities.
    Given the fact that each session of national parliament opens with a religious invocation to a male deity (‘the lords prayer’), perhaps the former definition can be more aptly applied.

    https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/House_of_Representatives/Powers_practice_and_procedure/Practice6/Practice6HTML?file=Chapter8&section=03

  12. OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES

    Andrew J Smith. “Australia is one of the few democracies lacking a bill of rights”. that doesnt mean we dont have some rights. eg. the implied guarantee of freedom of political communication. religious freedoms are also currently protected under the existing Constitution.

    ‘wtf do Jews and Arabs have to do with anything? Just another example of why Australians are viewed as ignorant, arrogant, shallow and racist, what’s next slag off Sir John Monash?’

    you were saying the agenda in the usa & the uk and in aust was driven by and for the benefit of the 0 1% of wealthy people who were wasps. that is factually incorrect. the wealthiest are mostly either jews or arabs or chinese.

  13. OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES

    Andrew J Smith . seems u r completely brainwashed and niaive. any one who mentions ‘jew’ is accused of being rascist. perverse.

  14. OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES

    Andrew J Smith. Section 116 of the current aust constitution prohibits the fed gov from making laws establishing a religion or favouring any particular religious observance or prohiting the free exercise of religion. Hence, the current constitution already protects those people who want to practice their religion i.e. their religious rights. So what would be any different in a bill of rights?

    “The Commonwealth shall not make any law for establishing any religion, or for imposing any religious observance, or for prohibiting the free exercise of any religion, and no religious test shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust under the Commonwealth.”

  15. Max Gross

    Religious “belief” is a mental illness and “believers” should be treated accordingly.

  16. Matt

    So Dictator Max, what is your undemocratic, unconstitutional, decree of treatment to be for those who disagree with your beliefs (or lack of)? Why stop at people who disagree with you on religious grounds – why not treat ‘differently’ people who don’t agree with your politics? Or perhaps anything else you personally don’t like?

    Matt

  17. jim

    Ralph Drollinger, the Christian nationalist who leads Bible study meetings for members of Trump’s Cabinet and members of Congress, is aggressively seeking to expand his reach in state capitals and local governments as well as overseas. Drollinger teaches that there is one “absolutely critical preeminent duty of the Church in an institutionally separated society: to convert the soul and disciple—Christianize—the leaders of the State and its citizenry.”

    Drollinger said there are 12 Cabinet members taking part in the weekly White House Bible studies, and about 30 House members and 12 senators taking part in the congressional versions. Drollinger and his Capitol Ministries have big growth plans.

    AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, is a powerful Washington DC lobbying organization. In this 2016 video, AIPAC describes how it has successfully worked to create U.S. laws against boycotting Israel over its multitudinous violations of human rights and international law.
    Nothing to do about why our world is a mess.

  18. OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES!

    Matt. Unfortunetly for Dr Ravi his argument that where one of a number of religions gains prominence over the others and that the believers of the lesser ones will be condemned by the powerful one seems to be an argument against, not in favour of, all religion or for the establishment of a single hegemonic religion.

    Morality doesn’t come from religion.It predates religion

  19. Matt

    OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES!,

    That was not the message I got from what he said. How did you arrive at that view?

    Matt

  20. Matt

    Dr Ravi also worked with John Polkinghorne, one of the worlds leading theoretical physicists (From Queen’s College in Cambridge).

    Below is an extract from the wikipedia for Polkinghrne:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Polkinghorne

    “He (Polkinghorne) suggests that God is the ultimate answer to Leibniz’s great question “why is there something rather than nothing?” The atheist’s “plain assertion of the world’s existence” is a “grossly impoverished view of reality … [arguing that] theism explains more than a reductionist atheism can ever address.” He is very doubtful of St Anselm’s Ontological Argument. Referring to Gödel’s incompleteness theory, he said: “If we cannot prove the consistency of arithmetic it seems a bit much to hope that God’s existence is easier to deal with,” concluding that God is “ontologically necessary, but not logically necessary.” He “does not assert that God’s existence can be demonstrated in a logically coercive way (any more than God’s non-existence can) but that theism makes more sense of the world, and of human experience, than does atheism.”[22] He cites in particular:

    The intelligibility of the universe: One would anticipate that evolutionary selection would produce hominid minds apt for coping with everyday experience, but that these minds should also be able to understand the subatomic world and general relativity goes far beyond anything of relevance to survival fitness. The mystery deepens when one recognises the proven fruitfulness of mathematical beauty as a guide to successful theory choice.[23]

    The anthropic fine tuning of the universe: He quotes with approval Freeman Dyson, who said “the more I examine the universe and the details of its architecture, the more evidence I find that the universe in some sense must have known we were coming”[24] and suggests there is a wide consensus amongst physicists that either there are a very large number of other universes in the Multiverse or that “there is just one universe which is the way it is in its anthropic fruitfulness because it is the expression of the purposive design of a Creator, who has endowed it with the finely tuned potentialty for life.”[25]

    A wider humane reality: He considers that theism offers a more persuasive account of ethical and aesthetic perceptions. He argues that it is difficult to accommodate the idea that “we have real moral knowledge” and that statements such as ‘torturing children is wrong’ are more than “simply social conventions of the societies within which they are uttered” within an atheistic or naturalistic world view. He also believes such a world view finds it hard to explain how “Something of lasting significance is glimpsed in the beauty of the natural world and the beauty of the fruits of human creativity.”[26]

  21. jimhaz

    Church and State Summit

    https://churchandstate.com.au/

    Groan… more background political influence coming from the born to rule the universe crowd.

  22. Andrew J Smith

    OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES

    Mr Big anonymous Caps, I assume the major parties are not extreme enough for you?

    I’d suggest you go practice your freedom of speech on jews in your local RSL club when crowded including vets; make it nice and ranty and mention Sir John Monash.

    Let us know by posting how you go when you get out of A&E; I’d guess you would not have the intestinal fortitude, maybe former Eastern Germany, Poland, Turkey or Hungary would be more to your taste?

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