Latest news > Australia: Christians opposed to marriage redefinition facing unprecedented violence, hate speech, discrimination and attempts to silence them

Australia: Christians opposed to marriage redefinition facing unprecedented violence, hate speech, discrimination and attempts to silence them

27 September 2017

An Australian media outlet has published a shocking catalogue of violence, hate speech, discrimination and attempts to silence those opposed to the redefinition of marriage, most of whom it says are Christians. On 22 September Mercatornet stated:

“Everyone should be concerned over the growing discrimination, persecution and vilification of Christians which is occurring in Australia. Not only is the government failing to protect the human rights of Christians, but often it seems to be enabling discrimination and persecution through legislation and comments made by parliamentarians.”

They drew attention to a wide range of news reports of attempts to silence Christians campaigning to protect traditional marriage in Australia’s current referendum. We do not have space to list all of these appalling acts of intimidation here, but just some of the threats and actual acts of violence include:

A meeting at a hotel of four Christian groups had to be cancelled due to physical threats by LGBT activists. 

A group of protesters vandalized the office of a senator who supported traditional marriage and menaced his children’s school.  

Violent protesters disrupted a Liberal party function because a well known sports star opposed to the redefinition of marriage was a guest; the protestors sprayed attendees with glitter and confetti. 

The Australian Charities and Not for Profits Commission had to take the highly unusual step of giving Australian Christian Lobby and Lachlan Macquarie permission to keep the names of their board members secret on the grounds of “public safety” because of harassment of board members by advocates of same-sex marriage.

A mother who produced a video exposing what was taught to her children in “Safe Schools” (a highly controversial school programme on “homophobia”) but remaining anonymous for fear of violence, was ”outed” by Jo Hirst, who wrote material used in the programme. 

The headquarters of the Australian Christian Lobby has been targeted several times. Last December it was rammed by a vehicle filled with explosives driven by an LGBT activist who said he wanted to destroy ACL while he committed suicide. More recently an LGBT activist encouraged supporters of same-sex marriage to post noxious substances to it. Subsequently police were called after two suspicious packages containing white powder were posted to it. The building has also been pelted with eggs. 

A doctor who appeared in the first advertisement for the “No” campaign in the forthcoming referendum (on redefining marriage to include same-sex marriage) received repeated threats of violence at her clinic as well as an online petition calling for removal of her medical registration.

Four weeks ago LGBT activist and TV star Benjamin Law mused online about raping MPs opposed to same-sex marriage. It generated almost 300 likes and many replies, including one that read, “Start with (Andrew) Hastie,” the Liberal and Christian MP for Canning in Western Australia. Mr Law then tweeted a response indicating he would like to do this.

These events in Australia follow the pattern of threats and actual acts of violence suffered by politicians, church leaders and ordinary Christians who voiced disagreement with the UK’s proposal to redefine marriage in 2012-13. However, disturbingly the level of violence, hatred and abuse directed against Christians in Australia seems not only to be significantly greater than the UK, but rapidly escalating as well.

What Christians are being subjected to – and we have only outlined above just some of the violence, and omitted  the abuse and overt discrimination – is very similar to some of the abuse suffered by LGBT people in the past. There is therefore a deep and disturbing irony that a minority of LGBT activists are now subjecting Christians to the same violence, abuse and discrimination that they once endured.