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Thursday, 21 February 2019 09:01

Religious "vilification" not unlawful in NSW

In an important decision on religion and free speech in NSW, the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal has ruled today in Ekermawi v Nine Network Australia Pty Limited [2019] NSWCATAD 29 (15 Feb 2019) that it is not a breach of the law in NSW to make offensive comments about a religion.
Published in Freedom of Speech

The Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee has now (Feb 14, 2019) tabled its Report on the Sex Discrimination Amendment (Removing Discrimination Against Students) Bill 2018, a Private Senator’s Bill introduced last year by Senator Wong with the support of the ALP.

Published in Religious Freedom
Tuesday, 12 February 2019 06:38

The Attack of the 50 Foot Trans Tyrants

Is it just me? It seems that so much of today’s sexual insanity happens to be as believable as the stuff of science fiction. The radical trans movement is spiralling out of control, and many sensible folks have to wonder if reality is now being replaced by whacko Hollywood sci-fi flicks.
Published in Gender Mainstreaming
Thursday, 17 January 2019 07:23

The 'Tribunal' Game

If the legendary TV Lawyer, Denny Crane ever moved to Oz he would make yet another fortune in the maze of Tribunals that beset our nation and people. It is a 'quasi' judicial system designed to give taxpayer cash to lawyers toward the end of their mediocre careers and ready for an ex-Starship Captain Denny to go gunning for and wipe the floor with them.
Published in Freedom of Speech

There is no discrimination by Christian Schools against gay kids.

No kid has ever been expelled for being gay & no school wants to. Yet if you were to believe Labor’s Senator Penny Wong, she claims to be fighting against such discrimination. Dr Greg Walsh, senior law lecturer at the University of Notre Dame Australia in Sydney joins me to discuss her proposed legislation, the arguments for and against it, and what he thinks the Parliament should do instead.

Published in Religious Freedom
Saturday, 22 December 2018 12:47

When killing babies just isn't enough

It's strange how we can hold a distorted view of the world for so long. Like many of you, my ideas on different issues and philosophies have developed over the years. I've aged and learned to see things from new perspectives and have grown through the humiliations and trials of life. One place where my ideas have shifted greatly is in the realm of evil. When I was younger, the world seemed less evil to me. I believed that hell existed, but that not many people went there. I thought that place was probably quite empty except perhaps for Hitler, Jack the Ripper, and a demon or two.

Published in Right to Life
Wednesday, 19 December 2018 22:41

Ruddock Report response (part 3)

In my former posts (here and here), O Friend of Law and Religion, I have dealt with all that the Ruddock Report covered in recommendations 1-12 and 15, along with the official Government Response to those recommendations. In this post I aim to cover recommendations 13-14 and 16-20. These deal with important issues of the law of blasphemy and religious free speech, along with State discrimination laws, collection of data, education on religious freedom, the role of the Australian Human Rights Commission, and the exercise of leadership in the area by the Commonwealth.    

Published in Religious Freedom

For those following the debates about proposed amendments to discrimination laws removing religious freedom from faith-based schools, the LNP Government has now tabled a number of amendments to the ALP Bill released earlier this week. While these amendments are a move in the right direction, there are still some serious concerns about their effect on religious schools and their ability to operate in accordance with their religious beliefs. The Government amendments can be seen on this page as separate documents. I will aim to briefly outline the effect of the amendments. I will assume readers are familiar with the ALP Bill discussed in my previous blog.

Published in Religious Freedom
Friday, 30 November 2018 06:56

ALP Bill on religious schools and students

[Senator Wong, leader of the Opposition in the Senate, has introduced a Private Senator’s Bill aimed at removing the power of religious schools to discriminate against same sex attracted students. Unfortunately, the amendments do much more than stop schools expelling students on the basis of their internal sexual orientation (a goal all sides of politics agree on.) They will have a serious impact on the ability of such schools, and other religious bodies, to operate in accordance with their religious beliefs. A more nuanced approach is needed.  

Published in Religious Freedom

The Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee (“LCAR Committee”) has now handed down its report into Legislative exemptions that allow faith-based educational institutions to discriminate against students, teachers and staff . The inquiry has been incredibly short- the motion referring the topic was only passed on 13 November. As expected (due to the preponderance of ALP and Greens committee members) the report recommends complete removal of religious freedom protections for faith-based schools relating to how those schools deal with same-sex attracted students. There is a strong dissenting report from Coalition Senators.

Published in Freedom of Speech
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