Media ID 0214-AB
First day of Parliamentary debate (9 October 1985) on the second reading of the Homosexual Law Reform Bill
Fran Wilde, Geoff Braybrooke, Margaret Shields, Merv Wellington, Robert Muldoon, Venn Young
Parliamentary debate on the second reading spans 0213 – 0223, and 0206.. This tape (0214-AB) appears to be the start of the debate
This summary gives general themes as to the content of this recording. It is not a verbatim transcript. Always refer back to the original audio. This is a working document and any amendments/corrections are welcome.
Fran Wilde – confronting your own ignorance is no less difficult for a group than it is for an individual .. the debate has been an emotional one.. a vicious attack on 10% of the community.. after being the object of a bitter hate campaign myself.. some don’t want to know the facts..
Wilde - challenging the mythology: the opponents used the example of San Francisco .. many places have had reform and the sky hasn’t fallen in..
Wilde – homosexuality is no longer seen as a disease.. psychological effects come from how society treats homosexuals..
Wilde – Ex gay movement.. anti-homosexual literature.. Mr Johnston example from Christchurch.. queer bating.. orientation
Merv Wellington – People are tired of this garbage
Speaker – caution Merv Wellington
Wilde – 25% of all men have had significant homosexual experience . sexuality is determined pre-school.. age of consent (twelve in Spain)..
Wilde – age of consent – the question we must decide.. equality..
Wilde – Human Rights Act .. I’ve heard various statements.. you’ll still be able to say what you like .. the Act deals with actions.. this provision in the Act will serve as a trigger to start a major attitude change in the community..
Wilde – no evidence about homosexuality and paedophilia
Wilde – many are relying on this House to give them equal rights..
Venn Young – Fran Wilde goes far to far with her proposal.. All members of the National Party will vote according to their consciences.. The Select Committee was cut off at the knees..
Young – dealing with criminal code not morals.. These people need our understanding.. I limit my support to adult homosexuals.. age of consent at twenty..
Geoff Braybrooke – This Bill has divided this nation, churches, communities and families.. This Bill was suddenly launched on this House.. At the last election no one knew about this Bill.. The average attitude Live and Let Live.. This Bill goes far beyond that.. My own research has shown that my own constituents bitterly resent the cloak of respectability given to homosexuality .. The second part of the Bill is the worst .. You will not in my lifetime change attitudes.. They find homosexuals repugnant.. A random poll of over 500 was carried out and 72% of them rejected the Bill..
Braybrooke – Public morality.. incest
Braybrooke – I’ve attended a number of public meetings.. In the beginning my conduct wasn’t the best.. I felt intense anger.. I went to those public meetings hoping to learn something .. The hatred – on both sides of the argument - had to be seen to be believed.. Salvation Army officers were called Fascist Pigs.. During two of those meetings we had members of the gay community give their side..
Braybrooke – the gay community are out to get their own way - come Hell or high water.. the petition.. even if half those signatures were wrong it still makes it the largest petition presented
Braybrooke – this Bill must not be applied to the Armed Forces.. discipline is a fragile thing.. there is a lack of privacy in the Armed Forces.. many in the Armed Forces despise gays..
Braybrooke – every soldier is a walking blood bank .. AIDS .. it should not apply to the police or prison officers.. This Bill has highlighted the need for extended research into homosexuality.. In the United Kingdom they had the Wolfenden Report.. We need a Royal Commission.. and then a general referendum..
Braybrooke – this Bill has divided the nation like no other.. it won’t go away .. we need a referendum.. In the United Kingdom it is not an offence for two males to commit homosexual acts .. however it is for three males to commit homosexual acts.. This is the thin end of the wedge..
Braybrooke - Gay marriages – it may happen.. I find it repugnant.. I appeal to the House to show reason .. too much heat and not enough light.. Do not pass this Bill send it to a Royal Commission
Robert Muldoon – I supported Venn Young’s Bill (1975).. I do not support this Bill.. it would give me no great concern if these acts were decriminalized.. I find myself entirely on the side of the Member of Napier.. I oppose the idea of making abnormal behaviour normal.. it may be unfair and unreasonable to put a jail penalty on these acts..
Muldoon – I’m going to vote against the whole Bill.. the homosexual community is creating a high profile for itself.. it’s damaging for society .. they’ve damaged their own cause..
Muldoon – I object to Fran Wilde’s comment about the petitioners.. they were not obscene.. the Salvation Army care for people.. respect for those who behave respectably..
Muldoon – we are not ready for this Bill. Society would not accept the second part.. you come to Parliament to exercise your judgment
Margaret Shields – I hope that the Member for Tamaki will reconsider his decision.. It’s a Bill that has caused a lot of concern.. no good purpose to be served by the retention of criminal sanctions... there is no evidence that homosexuality is a choice, sexual preferences are established early in life.. no evidence to show that the process is reversible, most human beings need stable caring loving relationships.. promiscuity..
Shields – I pledged to my electorate that I would do a postal referendum in the Kapiti electorate.. 30% of those polled in my electorate opposed Law Reform.. A Heylen poll in my electorate showed 33% were opposed to decriminalisation..
Shields – age of consent – sixteen.. I’d like to address points printed in the booklet by the Coalition of Concerned Citizens: the homosexual lifestyle is harmful to the individual and society.. we all know when homosexuals try to go straight and marry ..decriminalisation will lead to growth of homosexuality.. forced promiscuity.. allow for homosexual acts on young boys.. homosexuals are typically unhappy people.. This a damaging and confused proposition.. [continues on 0215-A]