The head of the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) has called for an openly gay South Australian politician who co-sponsored a bill to legalise same-sex marriage under state law to be dumped by his party.
On February 18, ACL managing director Jim Wallace claimed that Labor MLC Ian Hunter had labelled ‘natural marriage proponents’ racists because he had compared ALP resistance to change on same-sex marriage to resistance to changing the White Australia policy during the 1960s.
Hunter likened same-sex marriage supporters to progressive Labor politicians like former South Australian premier Don Dunstan and former prime minister Gough Whitlam who had pushed to end that policy.
“History has judged those progressive activists as right, just as I am confident that history will judge those advocating today for marriage equality to be right,” Hunter told the South Australian parliament on February 9.
“This is just the latest example of intolerance from the gay marriage lobby,” Wallace said.
“At a time when the federal Government is reaffirming the virtues of multiculturalism, Mr Hunter labels as racists those who for religious and cultural reasons affirm marriage as between a man and a woman.
“The South Australian Premier, Mike Rann, must act to distance his Government from these statements.
“Where is the evidence of tolerance and understanding of diversity which is so essential to multiculturalism?
“It is appropriate to have a debate on gay marriage but it cannot be conducted in the atmosphere of intolerant rhetoric where emotive labels are too often used to suppress debate and intimidate people into silence.”
In 2009 Wallace told a shocked audience that pedophiles were overwhelmingly gay while attempting to explain pedophilia in the church during a function in the NSW Parliament.