For broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 8 Dec 2013.
Canberra wedding venues are awash with conspicuous celebrations this weekend as same sex couples seek to tie the knot in the same way as heterosexual couples.
The ACT Government last month legalised same sex marriage, and the first ceremonies took place in Canberra yesterday after the High Court reserved its decision on the Commonwealth’s challenge to the ACT laws until Wednesday.
The High Court could rule that the Territory law is inconsistent with the Commonwealth Marriage Act and therefore invalid; or that it is not inconsistent and the law is valid; or that the meaning of the word “marriage” in the Constitution precludes same-sex unions.
If the High Court rules that the word “marriage” in the Constitution means only unions between a man and a woman, it will take a referendum to determine whether marriage law should be expanded to include same sex couples. And that is precisely where this debate should go: to a referendum.
I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.