Like what you've read?

On Line Opinion is the only Australian site where you get all sides of the story. We don't
charge, but we need your support. Here�s how you can help.

  • Advertise

    We have a monthly audience of 70,000 and advertising packages from $200 a month.

  • Volunteer

    We always need commissioning editors and sub-editors.

  • Contribute

    Got something to say? Submit an essay.


 The National Forum   Donate   Your Account   On Line Opinion   Forum   Blogs   Polling   About   
On Line Opinion logo ON LINE OPINION - Australia's e-journal of social and political debate

Subscribe!
Subscribe





On Line Opinion is a not-for-profit publication and relies on the generosity of its sponsors, editors and contributors. If you would like to help, contact us.
___________

Syndicate
RSS/XML


RSS 2.0

Brendan O'Neill: defending the nanny state in the name of freedom

By Rodney Croome - posted Monday, 5 May 2014


One of the strongest arguments for allowing same-sex couples to marry is personal freedom.

The state has no right telling me, you or anyone else who we can and can't marry.

When the government effectively says the world would be better off if I married a woman, instead of the man whose selfless love has carried me through the best part of the last decade, it is nannying on steroids.

Advertisement

Perhaps that's why British columnist and editor, Brendan O'Neill, is so strident on the subject.

He is a libertarian and an opponent of freedom to marry.

The desire to trivialise and divert attention from the compelling freedom-based case in favour of reform may be what has driven him to concoct a freedom-based case against.

O'Neill argues that the recent campaign against former Mozilla boss, Brendan Eich, for donating to anti-marriage equality groups was not an isolated incident but reflects authoritarianism at the heart of the freedom-to-marry movement.

Barely concealed below rhetoric about tolerance is a ruthless desire by western political elites to undermine marriage and reshape society by allowing same-sex couples to walk down the aisle.

It starts with "Orwellian" manoeuvres like changing "husband" and "wife" to "partner", progresses through court cases against businesses that don't want to bake gay wedding cakes and ends with social ostracism, and even the police, silencing all dissent.

Advertisement

This kind of fear mongering is most often heard from conservative religious leaders, not libertarians.

But O'Neill mimics their tactic well, misconstruing a few isolated examples while ignoring a host of contrary evidence, and then drawing apocalyptic conclusions.

He laments that marriage equality opponents have been called "hateful" and had their websites hacked, which is of course wrong, but it's no worse than pro-equality advocates being demonised as Nazis, receiving death threats or losing their jobs.

  1. Pages:
  2. Page 1
  3. 2
  4. All


Discuss in our Forums

See what other readers are saying about this article!

Click here to read & post comments.

15 posts so far.

Share this:
reddit this reddit thisbookmark with del.icio.us Del.icio.usdigg thisseed newsvineSeed NewsvineStumbleUpon StumbleUponsubmit to propellerkwoff it

About the Author

Rodney Croome is the National Convenor of Australian Marriage Equality and was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 2003 for his gay rights advocacy. He is co-author of Why vs Why: Gay Marriage.

Other articles by this Author

All articles by Rodney Croome

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Article Tools
Comment 15 comments
Print Printable version
Subscribe Subscribe
Email Email a friend
Advertisement

About Us Search Discuss Feedback Legals Privacy