Hanson-Young

Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young with daughter Kora and now separated husband Zane Young. Picture: Adelaide Now / Tait Schmaal

The Australian parliamentary campaign for same-sex marriage received a boost last week when a majority of the upper house of the New South Wales legislature voted in favour of a private members bill. The vote was 22 to 16. They thoughtfully backed an amendment for churches to be spared from having to conduct same-sex ceremonies.

However, poly-unionists are making a bid to get in on the act, to the annoyance of some Greens, and Liberal MP Matthew Mason-Cox objected that polygamists would be next in line for marriage rights.

“Indeed, if one was to take the notion of equality of marriage to its logical conclusion, then there would be no reason to stand in the way of polygamist marriages, or other variants,” he said.

“This is the so-called slippery slope in this debate which has manifested itself overseas in some jurisdictions where same-sex marriage has been allowed.”

In fact, The Australian newspaper reported on May 24 that polyamorists were attacking the Greens for leaving them out of the national wedding party. Federal Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said the institution of marriage should involve only two consenting adults. “Our bill clearly states marriage ‘between two consenting adults’ . . . we don’t support polyamorous marriage…” she said. However, other Greens have begged to differ and it will be interesting to see where this issue goes in the party.

Meanwhile, the range of gender groups claiming the right to marry grows daily:

Brisbane radio host and women’s rights advocate Rachelle White, who describes herself as “a bisexual-pansexual, queer, vegan feminist (who is) polyamorous and ethically non-monogamous”, also comments on the web.

Ms White, who has two partners, told The Australian her desire for polyamorous marriage as an expression of love and equality was analogous to that avowed by gay parliamentarians such as Labor senator Penny Wong in support of same-sex marriage.

“It’s something dear to my heart,” Ms White said.

Welcome to the mad world of new “marriage” rites.

Carolyn Moynihan

Carolyn Moynihan is the former deputy editor of MercatorNet