Parliament: introduction of the Homosexual Law Reform Bill (8 March 1985)
This page features computer generated text of the source audio - it is not a transcript. The Artificial Intelligence Text is provided to help users when searching for keywords or phrases. The text has not been manually checked for accuracy against the original audio and will contain many errors. If you would like to help create a transcript, please volunteer to listen to the audio and correct the AI Text - get in contact for more details.
[00:00:00] This audio comes from the collections of the lesbian and gay archives of New Zealand. For more information visit leggins.org.nz. Did I [00:00:09] bills fans in the name of friend Bob [00:00:14] Lee be given to introduce the homosexual law reform bill. That's a speaker at the outset, I want to make it quite clear that this bill is not a government or party media. It is a private member's bill. And as such, I would ask all members to listen to the debate and the issues carefully and to make the decision on the information. The real information, Mr. Speaker and brief the bullets designed to eliminate legal sanctions on consenting homosexual activity between adults to remove the legal sanctions on no intercourse between consenting adults to strengthen protection for boys under 16. along the lines of protection already provided for girls and to outlawed discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation. The bill as the house now has it before it is in the In the form of an omnibus bill to facilitate consideration and discussion during the various stages in Parliament, however, it is intended to seek the leave of the house to break the bill up into two component parts for final enactment as a crimes Amendment Act and the Human Rights Commission Amendment Act. Mr. Speaker, I'll briefly outline the main changes which this bill would bring about the amendments to the Crimes Act 1961. I found in part one, clause three of that repeal section one for all of the principal act and substitutes to new sections. The prison section relates to indecent x committed upon or with boys under the age of 16 years. The news substituted sections adopt the approach followed in sections 133 [00:01:45] and 134 of the principal [00:01:46] Act, which involve and decency was a girl under 12 and sexual intercourse or indecency with a girl between 12 and 16. The principal features of this approach are parallels The provisions and the penalties that there are a current currently provided for those sections dealing with girls. Mr. Speaker clause for repeal section one for one of the principal egg and substitutes a new section, the presentation for habits and decency between males. The new section follows section 135 relating to indecent assault on a woman or girl or over over the age of 16. In line with that provision, the maximum penalty for an offense against the new section one form is raised to imprisonment for a term not exceeding seven years. Clause five repeat sections, repeal section 142 of the principal act relating to sodomy and substitutes a new provision relating to anal intercourse. It is drafted on the assumption that the relevant provisions of the right Law Reform Bill presently before Parliament are enacted and broadly they present to us and there have been non consensual intercourse will constitute the new crime of sexual violation and will be dealt with accordingly. For this reason, the new section one for two is limited to consensual anal intercourse, and then only where it has committed upon a person who is under 16 years or a severely subnormal. Mr. Speaker, clause six repeal section 146 of the principal at keeping place of resort for homosexual acts and consequentially a main section 147 Bravo keeping to make it clear that premises were male or female prostitutes work, maybe a brothel for the purposes of the section, the the amendments to the Human Rights Commission Act, come and talk to, and they will render it unlawful to discriminate against a person on the ground of that person's sexual orientation, where no circumstances where it is presently unlawful to discriminate on the grounds of six. Mr. Speaker, it is 10 years since this house last had the opportunity to consider sitter a bill of this nature introduced at that time, bye Main before I told her there's no doubt that in that decade our community has developed an awareness of the justice of this course, people have moved steadily away from the knee jerk hysterical opposition to a position of more informed consider the acknowledgement that there is no evidence in favor of the punitive criminal code, which deals with this area of consenting, adult sexual activity. even five years ago, there was majority support for homosexual law reform and a halan part of 2000 people. Those who oppose this bill advance a number of arguments which I'm sure based on a genuine but misson misinformed concern about the nature of homosexuality and the effect on our community of legalizing adult can six consenting homosexual activity. And the last few days we have heard that homosexuality and in particular, sodomy is a violation of Christian moral standards. In fact, Mr. Speaker modern biblical scholarship with the assistance of the science of linguistics does not support the long held theory that the city of Sodom was destroyed as a punishment for [00:05:11] sodomy. [00:05:13] The Old Testament story actually was an illustration of the effective of continual violation of rigid hospitality, customs, and the homosexual punishment, interpretation appears to have gained currently about the second century AD. In the New Testament, Jesus see practically nothing about sexuality and nothing at all about an age of consent. A rigid and complicated theology of sexuality, which prescribed homosexuality began developing with poor and proceeded down through the ages, ably assisted by a succession of Christian Roman emperors concerned as much with political and financial considerations and what they traditional opposition to Greek culture. It was strengthened during the Inquisition when professional heresy hunters were employed to extend English all forms of dissent, including sexual religious and political non conformism, which were very often defined and perceived as the same thing. The treatment of homosexuality by the modern legal systems of European countries has, until recently has been largely irrelevant of this history. contemporary Christian views are more diverse, and legislatures in many, many countries have also changed their opinions as a result of evidence gain from modern social and medical research, and more enlightened attitudes which have followed this information. Now, opponents often argue about the detrimental effects on the institution of the family, or on young people should adult male homosexuality be legalized? those arguments should be examined by this house. All homosexual people, like all heterosexual people are brought up in some kind of family. Most heterosexuals appreciate family life, as do most homosexuals. homosexuals can and do produce children. Many particularly in New Zealand are married, not necessarily happily because of the suppression of such an integral part of the personality. However, the effect of the current situation is that there are many many New Zealanders to have a homosexual parents, either male or female. One of the major myths surrounding homosexuality is that gay people are child molesters. All statistical evidence from every place where it has been collected contradicts this. Overwhelmingly, those who molest children are heterosexual men who molest young girls and least frequently, young boys if they [00:07:43] can't find a girl, [00:07:45] but they are overwhelmingly heterosexual in a basic sexual orientation for [00:07:54] protection from assault and right particularly when it occurs in their own own home where it most often occurs. And the perpetrator is a relation or a friend. But it does not from adult homosexual men that children are in more need of protection. They need protection from adult heterosexuals, most notably fathers, uncles and relations and friends of the family. It was only a century ago that the idea of homosexuality and child molestation became intertwined as they are now. And that was the result of a law change in which anti homosexual provisions were slipped into legislation designed to curb child prostitution, which was rife at the time. The factors that most adult gay men prefer other adults and are attached to adults just as most heterosexuals are. Opponents of this bill also claimed that evidence past young people will be corrupted. They imply that if young people are exposed to ideas or information about homosexuality, or to social or sexual contact with homosexuals, they will find it so attractive That they will themselves choose homosexuality. Again, there is no evidence whatsoever to back up this assumption. On the contrary, there is a vast body of research showing that even actual sexual experience in the mid to late teenage years does not play any part in determining sexual orientation. The Royal College of psychiatrists has publicly stated and given evidence to the effect that a person's primary sexual orientation is fixed very early in life, definitely before the age of 16. It is commonly accepted that at least a third of all males have some homosexual experience. It's still a number on the population whose prime sexual orientation is homosexual remains on a much lower level 45 of a state of the criminal law in any particular country. They will always be the same proportion of homosexual and heterosexual people in any population before or after a lot change as has been proved, and faces which do not have anti homosexual laws. I believe that protection from sexual exploitation, protection of people of any age, and any six is not achieved by law, which totally bans male homosexual activity. Nor is it achieved by setting various varying ages of consent. homosexual people are to be found in all walks of life amongst the educated, the an educated professionals, manual workers, policymakers and administrators. I would venture to suggest that of all gay people were to be publicly identified. He would be much surprised expressed. Many people would be moved to comment that nice, Mr. Brown the grocer or Mr. Smith, the doctor, or Mr. Jones, who works down at the factory was actually gay was a surprise. He seems so normal. Mr. Speaker, there was one more compelling argument for the introduction of this bill. userland fly other Western countries is now faced with having to deal with the aid syndrome. We are relatively lucky and that like most other things, but desirable and undesirable, it has reached us last, we have the opportunity to learn from the mistakes of others. AIDS is not as some have described it a homosexual disease. It is a sexually transmissible syndrome, which can be caught by anyone who receives the virus through a bodily fluid. I should also add that it is not easy to catch, and some parts of Africa where it is very common. heterosexual people are the main suffers. However, in recent years, it has entered America and Europe primarily through the homosexual community. And therefore it has been gay people who have been largely the victims in places where the gay community can live an open life and associate with other homosexuals without fear of reprisal. There are now being put in place big public education and health campaigns aimed at preventing the spread of AIDS. In New Zealand, we have a problem in this respect. homosexual acts are illegal. A very big proportion of homosexual men, no one knows exactly how many are married, living as heterosexuals. Many of these men express their homosexual orientation only occasionally, through casual sexual context with strangers. They run the risk of acquiring aids and of passing it on to the wives, they are unlikely to come forward to identify themselves for diagnosis until it is too late and ages most infectious and its early stages or to take the necessary steps recommended for safe seeks to prevent the spread of AIDS in the first place. Mr. Speaker, if we are to effectively combat the spread of AIDS in New Zealand, we must remove the criminal label from the prime [00:12:45] target group [00:12:47] and ensure that they feel secure enough to participate in a public education program. Mr. Speaker Finally, I want to say that this film is a serious attempt to reform the law and what I knowledge can still be a contentious issue. area. It is a private member's bill. And as I've said, every person in this house has a free choice of how [00:13:05] to vote, [00:13:07] introducing a private member's bill as a basic right of all MPs as representatives of the people. And it has become something of a convention in this house for members to vote for the introduction of such bills to enable a house to examine in detail the proposals and hear the evidence at the select committee. It has been 10 years since parliament has had the chance to scrutinize this issue in that way. I know that some members support the principle of homosexual law reform but disagree with me on the age of consent. Others question the Human Rights Commission proposal. I asked them to vote for the introduction of this bill. They will have the chance at a later stage to move or vote on any amendments they think appropriate, and of course to vote on the two parts of the bill separately. Do not discard the whole bill because you do not agree with part of it. This reform is long overdue. New Zealand and I asked the house to vote to allow the introduction of the homosexual law reform bill. The question [00:14:11] is that lead be given to introduce the homosexual law reform bill. This bill does not involve and appropriation. [00:14:20] The Honorable Mr. McLeod, Mr. Speaker, members of the National Party will have a conscience vote [00:14:26] on this bill. [00:14:28] for reasons that are well understood, it is not a matter on which there is party policy there is no party line. The website on this side of the house say will not be operating and therefore any member who seeks a division on any aspect of the bill [00:14:43] will have to provide his or her own tell us [00:14:48] to Speaker I think I got to say that for many members on this side of the house with the country reeling from crisis to crisis, this bill would not have [00:14:57] enjoyed any high legislative priority at this time [00:15:02] on the issue that is addressed by the bill itself. And I'll be brief, sir, because I know there are many members we do want to speak. I've always said that had I been in Parliament in 1974 75. I would have supported the bill it was introduced in by my colleague now the member for way to track that, sir remains my position. It was a cautious bill. However, this is an area where I believe if there is to be change, parliament, acting in the interests of the whole community has a responsibility to move cautiously. I'm particularly concerned sir the age of consent provisions that are contained in the major introduced by the member for [00:15:41] Wellington Central. While [00:15:44] any age is inevitably arbitrary, I am aware that strong evidence in 1974 75 persuaded the majority of the select committee to a higher age 20 I want to make it clear said that I will not support the third reading of this bill if the 16 year old provision remains series has been my practice as a local member of the [00:16:10] Parliament, I intend to consult with my [00:16:12] electorate before exercising a final vital though I do have previous expression because opinion from my electric which provide me with some guide [00:16:20] as to the attitudes of my constituents, [00:16:23] finally said my vote, as must be the case with all members of this house [00:16:28] must be in accordance with my conscience. [00:16:31] Sir, I am aware of differing religious points of view of the [00:16:35] on this issue, [00:16:36] but particularly of effect that now, many of the mainstream churches support some change to the law, although probably not as radical as that which is proposed by the member for women from Central. [00:16:48] I also [00:16:49] want to say, sir, that I regard the argument that the bill should be passed to facilitate the treatment of AIDS as being utterly fallacious. Sir for millennia, history has demonstrated that sexually transmitted diseases will be passed on, [00:17:07] regardless of the law. [00:17:09] As is the case with all such diseases, including those that result from legal heterosexual activity. Many sufferers do not seek treatment, not because the law prohibits their behavior, but because they fear embarrassment arising out of their predicament. The state of the law has nothing to do with those attitudes. doctors do not sit in judgment on their patients, by do not report patients to the police because they have contracted a disease that might have resulted from illegal sexual activity. Doctors act in accordance with their ethics and their professional owns. And they treat and care their patients regardless of the source of the disease. And certainly, regardless of the law in that regard. My view, sir, the sponsor of billed as a disservice by advancing that particular argument. [00:18:07] Just to clean up the Speaker, [00:18:09] I rise to support the member for what I can send Paul and wish to compliment her on the carriage in producing this private member's bill before the house, and I speak in favor of its introduction, and I echo her strong words when she points out for there's a tradition in this house, that a private member's bill should be given at least the first hearing so that the evidence for and against this can be heard and determined in the rationale of a select committee. Now I am a member of parliament sir but I was and still am a practicing barrister of the High Court of New Zealand. Like most of the males in this chamber, I was brought up under a system That regarded homosexuality with odium and contempt. And I was brought up under a biblical training of the famous Sodom, Sodom and Gomorrah of Babylon, and a great deal of the Old Testament. But I wish if we get into religious argument also, Mr. Speaker, to refer them to Matthew seven, one judge, not that you be not judged. Now, so in the career at the bar, I haven't course acted in many [00:19:29] cases [00:19:30] where people have [00:19:32] been tried, convicted, and indeed have head to head please made in mitigation of penalty. [00:19:39] Gradually throughout life, [00:19:41] I became sympathetic to these people, because of the tragedy, and then making this submission to this chamber Sir, I do not want wonder in any way to think that I have got so far along the line of life, [00:19:55] that I condone that behavior, [00:19:57] the early training that I had, so prevents me probably coming to that step. But I have learned from the career at the bar not to be [00:20:05] judgmental [00:20:06] on my fellow human beings, in their models or in other methods. Secondly, the law teachers when the discipline of mine that enables you to look at some things with rationality, rather than with emotion, and I hope that also the members of this house will conduct themselves and approaching this matter in that regard. Now, I have seen presidents and I've acted sir, for print for a president of a rotary club. We've been tremendous service to his community in this regard by depop. In that case, as a young man, I have acted sir or chairman of a county council to lock the Scrum and a provincial rugby team and whose wife when she became paralyzed from the waist down in a very tragic car accident, reverted to what was described in the open court as practices. were forced upon him in a boys boarding school, one can help not felt the feel sympathy for those people. Now, so that was the worst type of case because they interfered with young boys. That is not the position of the bill for for this house. I asked the lawyers in this house to look at it cowardly and calmly and say that the law ought to be certain. It ought to be fair, and it ought to be equitable between male and female. And one of my strongest arguments and supporting the members bill before this house, is the fact that it's not an offense, but have such consenting acts of intercourse between females. Why then should it be between male and if we are to have true equality, which I'm sure the women if this house spouse, and most of the men a spouse, then there must be a quality before the bar of justice, Justice the masquerade ball The Battle of conscience. And I'm saying, sir, that this very act which we're now trying to bring into reform, the homosexual laws, the very act, which might as an offense was only brought in by accident, like one night and a bill to protect prostitution of young women on the streets of London labo share moves an amendment, which was thought today in a further to stop the prostitution of young boys, without the proper scrutiny of Parliament with any small amount of members present. That bill was passed with that amendment, which did not have either the intention then, nor was it ever professed to have the intention, sir, to make consenting males guilty at the bar of criminal justice. Of course, the tragedy was that one of the greatest of our literary exponents Oscar Wilde was one of the first to feel the length of that law, which was not then intended. It was brought into our law sir about 1857 adopting English practices and 1900 night, it became enshrined in the review and the legislative enactment of the common law of a felony into our laws of newzealand. I would point out that at that period of time, even then, it was not just a homosexual act, but it was an act offensive against women as well. And as the member for what I can central has pointed out, this legislature has already sent to a select committee, a bill, largely in the form that they are members of the opposition, as short as before it came before the statute revision for a second time. And that law will deal when it comes back before this house with much of the nature of the heterosexual offense. That was previously and other bills that came before this house. Between miles that are deemed of an ad all day. I do like the believer the opposition wish to reserve my view on the question of a follow up bound to say that in logic again, that if 16 is the consenting age for heterosexual intercourse, and for women, that I must in favor of my own sex sighs this this, at least we are no less mature than the females of this world to exercise of judgment as an age of 16. And my present disposition is to say that both in logic and in reason that the age of 16 offensive must be great many members of this chamber is the proper age that is a view that I would reserve to be dispelled upon evidence before a select committee, if such evidence were of the view and the overwhelming nature of it was that that there had to be a compromise with us like [00:24:41] a high now so. The wolfred [00:24:46] and reporting brick [00:24:49] walls I resolve, not all anti establishment forces, not a real as a result of people of licensures behavior. But I say to the members in this house who oppose this law, this introduction, that in fact that was the result of the movement largely by the churches themselves. That thought that in the interpretation of the law of God is they practiced it. That judgmental attitudes were not something that the New Testament desired and which they were prepared to practice. And then that, indeed, it was the bishops who finally got the wolfen and report before the house. And that in Britain, the law not under a conservative government, but under a bunch of countries finally relaxed, the criminal acts, the poor then in votes, and I may say that in the old days, it was even a capital offense for which you are better for the state. I see the member Invercargill scratching his head Well, my TV show because we burn in hell. Eventually, I might say to him, no matter what our judgment is, matters, not a play just in the end, as I say to the member of Invercargill. Now I am signed to the house. But if it's an England, it is no longer an offense. In Denmark, it is no longer offense. And many of the states of the United States it is no longer an offense. This chamber in which we are present, the biting once took pride of the fact that it instituted laws [00:26:21] around the world [00:26:22] and as a foreigner, yet his did that with the women's vote. It did that with much of our social welfare legislation. But historically, it has always lagged behind the malaise of the community. What else is coming to the boldness, of attacking this matter of conscience? I know too, that it's a fear of many men, that if they say, all right, we believe that the law should be remedied, Mr. Speaker, automatically people in our own constituencies will say Oh, he's one of those or he's something up and I've already warned my own wife, Lisa, the telephone steps to run as I knew I did, when the member of Hawaii totora in courageous fashion suffered at the bar of public opinion when he moved the same bill in 10 years time. But I asked all people in this chamber to have at least the courage of reason, rational and conviction, that how can I support, sir a criminal law, which at one time Mike's offense in the mail, but not for I female? [00:27:21] I don't want to take up much [00:27:22] more of the time, sir, because I can see the member from Chicago, Mr. Normal Jones is chomping at the bit. And I would say this, that if we are to get this metal before I select committee, then it must be that the evidence comes from all people bold and fearless on both sides. And I asked the community listening, I'm quite sure we'll get this before Select Committee. I think the member for what I can central has the majority on introduction, that when those submissions are made, I am exhorting people from all walks of life, to come forward feel asleep before that, that committee to hear the evidence and to make them submissions and the best rational, legal and emotional manner rather than the have what is a matter of law of the present malaise of the community clouded to match by emotion without reason. [00:28:13] Mr. Norman James [00:28:16] the limit for Thomas the North wasn't the thing. [00:28:21] funny when he said Mr. Normal Jones was that sometimes this is safe when I look around this chamber, I begin to wonder whether in fact I am normal or abnormal because quite frankly, I am not with it. As far as most the name is Ty but he said on certain issues this is definitely one of them. And I don't go along with the with with what the new both the new subculture says today that if you're not gay, and that would be the worst travesty of a decent word that bastardized ever in the language that call people that are homosexuals go against the main center the significance today. It's a day it's not the connotation of Behind the sexual and as far as I'm concerned, all I know is that I am a perfectly normal person for my kids, but six events, and as far as I'm concerned, what I'm talking about and what this film about is abnormal sex between males. It's a, it's about sodomy, and are not kind of quite the scriptures like the members for Wellington Central, all the members of the North. I am just a poor face the theory that doesn't go to church once every two years, my wife now the church, I don't care about those things. I'm not an atheist. All I know is if the good law, what it is to procreate, the race through the rear either puts the room down there somewhere, that's all I can say. And all I can say it's a moral issue for the people in this country. And when I see the these people might eliminate the opposition, I've got a list here, emanated from the member for Wellington central who supplied it to the homosexual lobby saying where we are well, my God is not certainly doesn't get it from me. And I've got it here, which categorizes all the members of parliament is the categories on this bill. Now this is the sickening thing, Mr. Speaker and the leader the opposition. We know that private member's bills cannot get into this Chinese unless there's a consensus agreement for them to get in on the order paper from the respective corporate and when this country has got crisis after crisis facing it, of government concern customers, the people are holiday, the financial security and god knows what else inflation custom and labor purposes preoccupied with lobbying Well, good many of them and my focus, we occupied agonizing over whether hyper sexual should they be a moral issue again. And a funny thing, I'm not quoting scriptures, but it's a part of the question where I got dozens and dozens of telegrams in the book, none from church leaders, were the only church leaders We're very quick Come on the nuclear issue as a moral issue and a moral issue. [00:31:09] I want to see those same church leaders speak up on this. [00:31:16] Let them come out and give us a nice break. We will nice for you. And as far as the member for Thomas the law said, where it's been legalized, where's the legalized is no problem, the whole of that that I disease attended from from the communities of San Francisco. And I know for a fact that suddenly can I find the security at 16 years of age will be voting to legalize the spirit of eight throughout this New Zealand community. No doubt at all in my mind about that I chose to leave this place propose is this bill that it'll help to contain it. I don't believes that and nobody else that these people will come out the open there in the open the gay communities now it's sickening during the 16 years ago, that one stop at 16 will get taught in schools for 27 years, I've seen an agenda of people practicing it with kids on the street type application. Country hit NASA knows I've had experience of school being interfered with as far as [00:32:25] the Jones opposition. [00:32:28] And when this bill get and I'm afraid of there's enough of them in this in this pattern because according the list that I've got enough here to put a thread on this on the tradition, as I cited a private member's bill wants [00:32:40] to get the first lick but [00:32:42] look, I'm no moralizer but we cannot [00:32:49] interfere in film censorship is a literal censorship I do believe I don't go along with the M phase. It'll say well give it a go. This though say man pays off. going inside around, what Pontius Pilate wash the hands of inside look, it's not playing face to interfere with what goes on in the bedroom. It's not going on in the bedroom. It's going on in the schools, in the streets in the community. And it's pretty, it's pretty hard to see, which is no, no, no. And as far as I'm concerned, I don't go lovely people say, We wash our hands over this commentary, I believe. I do believe that is the time to make some men make those incentives. And this would have been one of them. As far as I'm concerned. I intend to fight against this bill, because all the euphemistic talking rubbish about as far as I'm concerned is not going to stop the spread of the only thing to stop the spread of homosexuality is the fact that the bulk of the public are expressed concern against the select committee and this parliament will sooner or later somewhere along the line. I have to fight with a gun to legalize now. Well, I can say All I can say about investigation of anything is that we are all concerned. Now, when people start talking about sexual orientation and all this sort of thing, that in the community and it's there, we don't say it, but to pass on, to legalize. And to think that by passing that action 6016 or 20, with a view this is going to is going to bring it out in the open and allow it to be acceptable. Yes, it will. [00:34:28] It'll make it so acceptable, that it'll be apparent everyone [00:34:34] in the school does not down the line, to try and take some sort of standard for your kids. You can either do it by example. And where do you think the parents again, they're looking for this help? They look into the legislators, they are not the wash the hands are the insights of the competition. I know that and I might ask everybody to stay conscious I can do it. There's a number of issues you have to do it on site. What is the best thing for a country I know And I know what a gut feeling I don't have to be scripted. I don't have to know the gut feeling. This is wrong. It's wrong. It's wrong. As far as the human race is concerned, it's a moral issue. This suddenly and homosexuality and all this way our sexual orientation is definitely getting all the spurious talk about human rights, and Christian scriptures, all this rubbish. All I know. And I say it again, that basically it's to human beings. And we're in fact the communities that have allowed it to exist and I couldn't quite back into history. The Greeks and the Romans and everybody else Where's happened, those civilizations have gone down the chain, and I've gone down the chain because all this so called keeping up with the subculture founded on this one is gonna stand up and be counted one way or the other. There are no halfway houses on this issue. You're either for it or against Now I can know that intellectually you can add to the logical as far as I'm concerned. That is, this is to me is a big issue. And I'll say this more likely to have more users this bill is passed, there will be more New Zealanders dying in the next 10 years this country, however, not a little bit of a nuclear explosion. The other shore of that [00:36:23] is I'm unsure of anything. [00:36:25] Before I call the next minute, could I just draw the attention of the striker occupying the gallery to the fact [00:36:33] that they are of course not part of the debate, which is which is taking place here and though they may feel strongly and wish to register one way or other up or out of the strength of their feelings, they must restrain themselves from doing this. This [00:36:53] is be Mr. Speaker. [00:36:56] The question of this being a great the greatest moral issue We've got an hour time I disagree with entirely. As far as I'm concerned, the greatest immorality in obscenity is the nuclear weapon. And that is your favor the nuclear issue in regards to the question of the morality of [00:37:14] a recognition [00:37:16] that there is a practice of homosexuality, and what is the attitude of this house and what is the attitude of Parliament, I stand here supporting the bill introduced by my colleague, the member for Wellington Central. And I do so fully conscious of the fact that we are dividing an issue that's a vast majority of our people, I would say is considered undesirable, but perfectly understandable. But we also know [00:37:47] that there [00:37:48] are other aspects of human activity within the heterosexual [00:37:52] form of the activity [00:37:55] that is considered by very many people undesirable that most probably the manuals to set quite acceptable. And [00:38:02] I would say that that people would be [00:38:04] out of their mind to try and have [00:38:07] some form of criminal activity. My speech is not going to be a long one. All I'm going to say Mr. Speaker is this. [00:38:16] I think that this house [00:38:19] must have progress in this year of 1995. Three extent that we must consider whether we're going to still [00:38:26] hound [00:38:28] people who have a different sexual orientation, [00:38:32] whether we're going to still help them with the law, [00:38:37] the police, [00:38:39] the court, [00:38:41] the prison cell, the public, [00:38:45] and everything else that goes with the law as it stays today, or whether this house is going to progress to a viewpoint. That was one stated by Pierre Trudeau in the same context That we should keep politics outside of the bedrooms of the nation's. Now if we do have a heterosexual relationship that is based upon one human being relating, in a warm human way to another human being, this is generally applauded. Because it's a question of relating in a high sexual relationship over the age of consent. It is also possible for one human being to be like, and I won't [00:39:35] give away to another given day. [00:39:39] Should this be considered criminal activity? [00:39:42] That's the crux [00:39:43] of the argument, the crux of this bill, [00:39:47] and what this bill [00:39:48] is endeavoring to do, and it's something I support [00:39:52] it we remove it being like one [00:39:57] Surely, [00:39:58] nada is accepted as a crime [00:40:02] rate is accepted as it [00:40:06] is accepted as a crime [00:40:10] is accepted as a crime. [00:40:13] Should [00:40:14] I human relationship between [00:40:16] people over a certain age [00:40:19] considered some, right, just criminal activity. [00:40:25] Mr. Speaker, [00:40:26] I say [00:40:28] people of our age and our period should have a good look at that and consider that it should [00:40:34] not be a criminal form of activity. [00:40:38] What is the human told me that has gone on with this particular subject [00:40:44] in many times throughout our nation? [00:40:47] What has been the torture that's gone on with very many people in all walks of life? [00:40:53] on this very question? [00:40:56] Will this helps perpetuate that human torment? When we take an attitude of human compassion and understanding why different form of sexual orientation, [00:41:08] you possibly ourselves. [00:41:11] My view, Mr. Speaker is that we have arrived in New Zealand in a sort of coming of age on this question. I totally support my colleague. I do it in a sense of fairness [00:41:26] and justice. [00:41:27] And I do it in a sense of human compassion for my fellow beings. I do not wish to [00:41:35] how people, [00:41:36] I do not wish to use the thumb, the wrath of the thumbscrew [00:41:40] the rack and the whip [00:41:43] on people who have a particular form of human relationship. There is no way is damaging to my personal my property. And I believe that's what the law is all about. And I think that in this law, we must change we must develop The age of consent, we must allow people to have a form of human relationship that is acceptable. itselves understandable in very many ways, and in no way hurting other people. [00:42:13] Mr. [00:42:14] Speaker, I am in favor of this bill. [00:42:19] The Honorable venya [00:42:22] Vegard 11 years ago, since the crimes Amendment Bill was introduced to this house, [00:42:28] referred to a select committee the committee set [00:42:31] for almost one year before the bill was reported back [00:42:35] and then considered [00:42:36] in a second reading by [00:42:38] the house and defeated at that stage. [00:42:42] I think it is appropriate [00:42:44] the house should again consider the question of health. [00:42:51] The law [00:42:52] is required to intervene into what is the private morality of Adults in our society [00:43:04] there is always a great difficulty [00:43:07] in determining between the role of a criminal law and the [00:43:16] determination that result [00:43:19] from the moral [00:43:21] code that develop in our community. [00:43:25] And the member for wanting them central I will find [00:43:27] that she handled [00:43:28] was known as she will have the exact [00:43:32] identical problem to deal with in arguing [00:43:36] for her proposal. I want to say that [00:43:40] a change in the law or in fact, the law itself does not make a great deal of difference of any [00:43:47] to the amount of homosexual [00:43:49] behavior in our country. [00:43:52] Whatever the law may say, there will always be [00:43:56] a strong a strong social added [00:44:00] opposed to homosexual behavior. [00:44:05] That is the burden I'm a lot of the homosexual in society [00:44:11] and the law cannot change that. [00:44:14] But throughout history, as a nation, there has been a strong prediction [00:44:22] that the law shall not punish simply because behavior [00:44:26] of fame, a moral that is accepted by society. [00:44:34] conduct that requires punishment should be of a harmful nature to individual or should offend a liberty [00:44:43] or make people in our community, [00:44:45] particularly the young, vulnerable. Now, [00:44:50] the law must intervene there, and it must intervene. [00:44:55] Very family indeed and therefore, I must tell you ambivalent even Central. I am concerned about the 16 year old [00:45:06] age of consent in her bill. parliament. Having considered [00:45:12] this madness I'm 10 years ago, determined that it should be [00:45:17] trendy. [00:45:19] And I would expect that there will be many submission to the Select Committee on this aspect of the legislation. [00:45:28] I must speak, Parliament cannot be asked to pass [00:45:33] judgment on the rightness [00:45:34] or the wrongness of the sexual behavior of consenting adults in private. But what it's being asked to do is consider whether a criminal [00:45:48] sanction is in fact, [00:45:51] an inappropriate way [00:45:53] of dealing [00:45:54] with this matter. In this day and age. [00:45:58] Mr. Speaker, [00:46:00] They bill as a return to this house from the [00:46:04] select committee if it indeed it is introduced, [00:46:08] I would expect to be quite a different major [00:46:11] from the way we see it now. [00:46:14] Whether that is a case or not Time will tell. But [00:46:20] what we must recognize that [00:46:23] this problem has been addressed by Parliament across the world, in most of them in the Western nations, the law has been changed, [00:46:35] as read me [00:46:35] along the line that was in the [00:46:37] 1974 crimes amendment bill. [00:46:41] This bill guys [00:46:44] and [00:46:44] I echo the words of the leader of the [00:46:47] opposition, [00:46:48] when we proceed with a change in the law. [00:46:51] In this area, if we do, we should proceed with caution. [00:46:56] We should proceed with caution. [00:47:00] Here it is appropriate that Parliament [00:47:02] again consider this major [00:47:05] and hence the [00:47:08] towards the protection of the young and the vulnerable. [00:47:15] SPEAKER I rise to oppose the introduction of this bill, which seeks to legalize sodomy and indecent acts between miles of 16 years and over. I acknowledge the fact that the member for Wellington central who has introduced this bill has done so because of her very strong, compassionate feelings in this matter. However, Mr. Speaker, notwithstanding this fight, I personally view homosexual activities as unnatural and perverted as changing the law to legalize these x will not in my view, make it natural. This bill Mr. Speaker, unfortunately, seeks to give it folk of respectability to homosexual activities. And my great fear is that once it becomes known to young and immature people, that adults view homosexual acts as normal, it will intend to influence these young people. The indulgence in homosexual activity x is in my view, a threat to society and to family life and should not in any means being carried. Speaker, I do not wish to shun homosexuals as a person. homosexuals require, in my view, both medical and psychological treatment, they do not require a change in law. I have in my own view, quite convinced that the overwhelming majority of New Zealanders want a decent society based on sound experience, tolerance and Christian principles. Unfortunately, this bill by To make this criteria the speaker This house has a responsibility to protect and to promote family life. My grave concern is that the next step with the militant gay rights movement, if this bill succeeds, will be to press for acknowledgment of so called gay marriages between consenting adults. And also, of course, the adoption of children. We have seen this happen overseas. I find this absolutely repugnant. I, like other members of this house have been lobbied by the gay rights homosexuals. They have attempted to present a bold and sometimes very defiant front and in spite of their endeavors to create an atmosphere of happy comradeship. I know, and I strongly suspect I should say that this is not so. In fact, Mr. Speaker, if I'm perfectly honest with myself, I am convinced that they and members of this house know, in their heart of hearts, that their actions about evil and perverted. Mr. Speaker, I mentioned the militants in the gay rights movement. I think that they are a minority. I acknowledge them. For the even as close as this morning, my own family, my daughter and my wife have been subject to insulting, abusive and threatening telephone calls. I find that action repugnant. I am also concerned of what will happen to the armed forces. If this bill becomes law. I spent 20 years in the armed forces and I know that the actual of homosexuals. Indeed cause grave crisis in the camps to maintain discipline. We are opening a Pandora's box with this bill. What I have seen so far is that we are attempting to apply what I call academic debating logic to a moral issue, and people are pressing that type of point of view to introduce it. [00:51:28] I believe that introducing the age of 16 is merely a sprek to catch your macro Island many years ago, you really want something asked for double and except I do not accept consulting acts of sodomy between consenting adults at any age. And although I sympathize with their medical problem, I will not condemn their perversion and sodomy and can I conclude Mr. Speaker by saying that I give notice to this house, but should in the long course I hate this house decide in its wisdom and against my better judgment that it will enact this bill. I when the rules of the house permitted, will introduce a private member's bill to facilitate a referendum throughout this nation, because this act, if it is condones, affects every citizen, it affects the very faces of a Christian nation, which we purport to be. And I give notice that that is what I will do. I oppose the bill. I urge all decent members also to oppose this bill. late Mr. Speaker, this is a repugnant bill. fence against God man and should not be introduced to this house. [00:52:54] I don't condemn the homosexual person. [00:52:58] peoplenet community that is count as genuine friends. [00:53:04] I have counsel with people [00:53:07] in the homosexual community, [00:53:11] people with the weaknesses and strengths just like any one of those. [00:53:15] What I do is condemn the homosexual behavior and a big difference. [00:53:20] And we have heard a number of speeches was what also causes debating phraseology, talking about compassion, [00:53:32] people, what this place is all about, and that is not certainly removed in my contribution today to this matter. What I condemn is the homosexual behavior. This bill now seeks to change an existing law, which is class and 6140. The Crimes Act 61 as an decency between miles [00:53:57] and we asked here, we decided to do [00:54:01] To say yes to what is now and indecency [00:54:07] to be called a decent egg. What is now [00:54:13] in the [00:54:13] law at a novelty to become normal. [00:54:20] And the dictionary clarifies the point of indecency is an offense of standard sexual behavior [00:54:27] and an abnormal means of obtaining sexual satisfaction. [00:54:33] Therefore, I say to the house, Mr. Speaker that the question of the age has no real relevance in this debate. There's no way that the age can be with any consequence on this matter. The Christian really is the basis of whether we are going to say yes, to a matter of class as indecent as becoming suddenly decent. There's also the Comment been made by several speeches, speakers, about the fact that this bill will not facilitate the proliferation of the spread of the homosexual community lets the house know that there is no scientific evidence from a great period of time that supports that homosexuals are born which is the same thing. [00:55:24] Genetically how mentally or biologically there is no evidence to say that that is the way it happens. [00:55:32] But indeed, there was considerable evidence and why do you evidence the size of homosexuality is a learned it's a learned behavior? [00:55:43] Alex, the speaker the promoted the bill [00:55:48] is asked me us to accept her arguments is adequate for a change of law the smeller I just say to the house again, part from the absurdity of LDN adequacy of the arguments that she advances that surely in the importance of this particular matter and as legislated we should not be moved until we are totally convinced, overwhelmingly convinced that this is the right thing. It shouldn't just stand at the scrutiny. ob an argument of the day, I think the word was used the coming of age situation. But we should only in the context important smeller move when there is overwhelming evidence, and it is just not they're just not present at all. The point of age being overcome or extensively controlled by this measure is totally fallacious. It's without at all. And and they really need to look to the California State and lead other states where this has been introduced to know that with explosion of homosexuality, resulting from the decriminalization age has also commensurately increased internet particular area 8132 people have suffered so that dreaded evil Scourge. And no one of us doesn't feel deeply concerned about that. That terrible disease of AIDS, which destroys the leukocytes in the body and makes even a common cold or fatal encounter. [00:57:27] But the fact is that over there, it has exploded and even 500 women are infected, which ought to be a point to ponder. [00:57:37] So the facts around the world are the where this has been decriminalized. In fact, age has not been controlled has been quite the reverse. Quite the reverse. [00:57:47] Mr. Lee, opposition. [00:57:51] They promoted the Bill said in terms of, of, I think removing any religious experiences being qualified In this matter, and using the words of the Lord Jesus to say that he, or rather to say that he did not, in fact, directly condemn homosexuality. And she's right in the context of that. But what she must face up to it, except Is it the whole? Tina, how can the scripture both artists in the New Testament, the Old Testament very explicitly talks about the abomination of this particular behavior and the New Testament says equally clearly, in many passages, those people without medical fiction have got no place in the standards that God has said, and let me just say to the house, that if we believe that that is out of the modernity of our legislative age, then let's ponder the fact that we subscribe to a school system which is built and founded on the Judeo Christian ethic And if we want to be consistent anything we must say that that ethic governs this house. And therefore we must be concerned and cognizant of the biblical teaching in this matter. I have had letters from people to say, how can you stand up holding strong religious beliefs and speak in this manner? It's a total absurdity. Not to do, sir. Mr. Speaker. The question is what does New Zealanders want from this matter? And I want to say to that we don't have any evidence from anywhere at this time to say that the public in New Zealand wants a change alone as context. Who can tell me who can stand up here and say that the public of New Zealand wants a little change? I raised it in the middle last week simply because I, since this is my happened and the rapidity it has. And I want to know why in actual fact, why the scheme in Britain was such rapidity. Why wasn't possible for the public to have a chance to say something But I don't believe even ever that chance which would could have been and should have been afforded them, that they would have been a response other than to confirm that there is no reason for change, there is only four or 5% Some claim 10% of the population within the homosexual community. And I believe all of telegrams I've got what you're saying to me, time and time again, the miniscule telegrams that we want this house to stay firm on the matter. stay firm on the matter. And I believe that can't be refuted in this house today. [01:00:34] I'm concerned about the question of where this is leading to. [01:00:39] I don't know I understand fully The context is built in this file, that it refers to the question on the brothel. But I do understand and see the very strong thread of moral equity proliferating, and whether just be a member of the government or a member of the government Hall. I want to say this There was a moral madness that seems to be occupying legislation these days, how many other acts have been passed? The recent time was strong humanist overtones. Where is the next move? Where is the next law but moral benchmark? If there is a law, moral bench back then this matter? Well, it could be abortion on demand. And I think we have good reason to expect that that would be a move coming from at least a member of government. Or [01:01:28] I think that we [01:01:30] although there's a free to fight across the house on this members are still restricted to standing orders. Now, this build is not related to anything else but time and sexuality. [01:01:39] And there's no [01:01:41] I'm not taking [01:01:44] allowing any member to throw another accusation across the floor that somebody else is going to introduce [01:01:49] another another matter on a some sort of a, what might be called another moral issue. Does the member that come back and speak [01:01:57] until now, the point where I interrupted he speaking very properly understanding order, the building is literally [01:02:05] to speak. [01:02:07] I'm sorry, I feel angry. I feel angry about this. [01:02:11] I just didn't put in conclusion, the scenario from the situation another fix our families and our home France. How can this house and passing this bill believe in the longer that the family unit is the fundamental cornerstone of the society? How both of us as parties can subscribe to that and still be party to passing a bill that is that is the ultimate outcome. It makes a mockery and ally of that situation. [01:02:39] And what about the family unit and those of us who are parents here today, and we have teenagers? Are you satisfied that your child or your young son a day to 16, [01:02:50] who can then be approached and recruited by the community? Is it what you really want? Can you tell me instead of the silence that is entirely a metal that you would face and be relaxed and comfortable in the knowledge. [01:03:03] What about the classrooms of our nation? Are you satisfied again as parents that what will happen across the nation historically proven from overseas, particularly in California? The proliferation influence which will result Are you happy about that? The article anybody surely negative [01:03:24] it's very difficult in a situation is highly charged the football field of sexual relations to get any logical approach to a problem such as that I think we'll save this country ill if we do not [01:03:43] attempt to do some very hard thinking about [01:03:49] and the first issue I would take is whether it is logical [01:03:54] to threaten because we've got to [01:03:56] face the reality this this has been very little damage in practice, not We do do not leave all of us, [01:04:02] not at all in the last, [01:04:04] but we should in practice take people who have been involved in homosexual and [01:04:11] put them in jail [01:04:14] amongst their own fix [01:04:16] and hold them there. [01:04:18] And environment which, in which one of the greatest problems has been an old as far as prison [01:04:26] as long as prison to the existence [01:04:28] has been homosexual activity [01:04:31] which is going on an open source. Now, the logic of that absolutely to me [01:04:40] that we should [01:04:43] try and stamp out a particular type of behavior by putting people in an environment where they are most prone to be involved in this behavior. So for that reason, I strongly support its introduction But I cannot go along with the subject which I don't think is he biologically or socially. [01:05:11] But there should be an equality of a [01:05:14] chronological age between males and females in judging wherever they are emotionally secure that an old enough to make a free adult decision concerning their sexual act. Now everyone who's brought up [01:05:32] the mixtape [01:05:35] has been educated by the children themselves. [01:05:38] And the fact that the chronological [01:05:40] age is almost as irrelevant in the development of the security and maturity in those children as their height. [01:05:50] But by and large, [01:05:53] boys tend to be around about two to three years flood [01:06:00] Cheating maturity and the maturity is like getting Lizzy [01:06:04] then girls so that I am totally at the last to understand [01:06:11] the [01:06:12] logic of placing the cattle point as a simple chronological level [01:06:20] for those six [01:06:22] That to me is not [01:06:24] facing reality anymore [01:06:27] when the decision to put people into jail [01:06:37] they are other matter, [01:06:38] which will naturally concern the house is the provision for very wide sweeping provisions in the human rights [01:06:49] to be invoked [01:06:52] to prevent discrimination [01:06:55] on people on [01:06:56] the ground for the homosexuality. I've no doubt This subject will be explored at length and the committee and then secondly in stages, and quite rightly so, it seems to me very much more social concern than some of the other two applications in the film. But in the present environment that's impossible. I think to divorce divorce, the consideration was from the very great public concern which we must have here, the spread of the disease a [01:07:37] now, [01:07:39] optimistic noises [01:07:40] have been made from [01:07:42] medical and medical administrative circles about [01:07:46] steps to being taken [01:07:48] to control this disorder. Dr. Wall government, people are my consult on lists. The list they confirm that optimism But we have been a program has been announced has been instituted amongst the community most likely to be effective to help control this, but the simplicity of the program has not been made public, my understanding of it but it is a three prong program. And I think this was welcomed, would be well considered here by members when they thinking of this legislation. [01:08:37] The best and most effective method [01:08:39] of control [01:08:42] is to abolish [01:08:46] or strict promiscuity and [01:08:53] that is absolute domain crash [01:08:55] and seeing where that achievable [01:08:58] plan the threat I would be greatly diminished. The second certainly inability to achieve that result. I recommend the use of a sheath directors go barrier for the transference of the intake itself. [01:09:21] And the third approach is the other great group for the [01:09:27] most illegally and improperly using drugs [01:09:30] to inject intravenously. [01:09:33] Now, it has agreed, but all of those groups not torturously resistant to advice [01:09:41] and guidance from [01:09:45] those who may see outside their peer group and preaching it. [01:09:55] So the prospect of control the President looks remotely [01:10:01] The authorities hope, [01:10:05] hopefully and that's their belief in this could be both no stronger than that. [01:10:11] That was the passage of this legislation and the deep crystallization the [01:10:17] last more people make themselves available for counseling. [01:10:23] Now, that is the only hope to see. And I doubt if overseas experience bears that out the prospect of the development of a cure for a prophylactic vaccine through a prism, a P is [01:10:44] one cannot say in any field of [01:10:47] medical endeavor and particularly in [01:10:50] particularly abstruse scientific field [01:10:53] that a breakthrough will not occur. [01:10:56] That's just one of the wide group of viruses retroviruses [01:11:00] In which because of the very nature of the [01:11:02] virus and the nature of its infestation in the body, like this, technically technically difficult. So there's an early positive result and this is not in the state of present knowledge to the expected [01:11:19] let background. But we are considering this measure. That doesn't make it easier. And it makes prospecting, [01:11:30] a strictly logical approach to taking into consideration the realities of the circumstances more difficult than it normally would be. In this most contentious matter. I would support its introduction. And I would hope that the house would examine it very carefully at all stages, because while [01:11:52] some of these matters, I think about an advance on our first legal system, there are others In the top four with very great [01:12:06] speaker. [01:12:10] It's quite interesting because I have respect for his views on these matters and others associated with it. However, Mr. Speaker on this occasion, I cannot agree with this proposition. This bill be introduced. Mr. Speaker, many of the reasons for those of us who are opposed to the major have been will canvas to them some instances, eloquently. So I think an elected assembly of this type needs to ask of a major of this nature. What good does it do? How will the community benefit? How will the well being and good of the community be enhanced And I agree with some earlier speakers, Mr. Speaker, when they noted that there is no compelling or novel or dramatic evidence of a recent nature to suggest that the customs norms and conventions that have said this cybil for so long and this and other areas should be changed. It's common and natural to allude to the experience or experiences in other countries. This is New Zealand. We are New Zealanders. And I believe we should trust our own judgment in these methods. Second thing and it's not this thing to say is it naturally given a free rate on an issue of this time? I mean, design attitudes be a heavily on his or her response for reaction. Mr. Speaker, my thinking on the matter is to a large degree, given by the fact that for many years I served as a secondary school teacher, indeed went at the age of 12 to a boarding school at which I remain for five years. [01:14:19] The house nice, nearly six years as Minister of Education, I would simply say to the [01:14:28] member for Wellington Central, he was introduced this bill with a result of my experience with a nice I say knowledge is a result of a very close and intimate association with the teaching and training of young people. I write lengthy period of time, but that which he has brought to the house this morning would bring untold misery. This satisfaction dissension and discord integration Schools and obviously, particularly the secondary schools of New Zealand. So I go back to where I started, given their What good does it do? [01:15:14] How is the climate of the nation enhance how other training platforms of our young people [01:15:26] baited by the sort of proposition? [01:15:30] Finally, Mr. Rogers anxious to the tiny bit, me alone. Finally, Mr. Mr. Speaker, and I would ask the member for Wellington central to be as that sort of thing in mind. I believe the member for Invercargill [01:15:46] was absolutely right when he said the people outside of this assembly, I am sure will be surprised at a time of difficulty for New Zealand and so many words [01:16:01] That we add the voting time to this particular matter at this particular time [01:16:07] of [01:16:08] the year and I also just throw into the debate and no animosity isn't hindered that the author of the bill and I take the word of your own college that miters a genuine is nevertheless I government with [01:16:28] is this some attempt to divert Parliament and the country from the the YT measures that end should be properly by for us at this particular time. [01:16:44] Thomas make it absolutely clear you have seen I've been sitting here throughout this divide that this is in no way a government measure. This is a private member's bill, and it was nearly notified to the government caucus as I mentioned the courtesy Speaking to. [01:17:03] Mr. Chairman, I did not suggest it was a government major. I've been in the house long enough to understand what is a private member's bill and what is not. I simply did. And I repeat, I throw into the discussion. I think the fact that the measures being proposed by a government with [01:17:23] or I think your mic progresses, [01:17:25] there's nothing really I can roll on here. The question was asked of the work, whether they because of the equation which could be asked, [01:17:35] and I think it's been the answer. [01:17:37] Thank you, Mr. Mr. Speaker. In conclusion, to an issue of this time, I believe two questions need to be applied. Is it essential or desirable, or neither? Is it right? Or is it wrong? Mr. Speaker, this measure is neither essential Nor desirable, and it is certainly [01:18:03] not right. [01:18:06] Helen Clark, picker, I would like to begin by commending the member [01:18:10] for Wellington central to this house for [01:18:12] her carriage and bringing forward this measure. It is always easy and not to take a position on issues of this kind. And in this case, it is always easier to leave at least swept firmly swept under the carpet. It's easier to ignore the very real human rights issues which are involved in denying a minority of the population this civil rights and I believe it is to the credit of the member for Wellington Central, that she has not duck this question that she has been prepared to stand up for the human and civil rights of the minority of the people of this country. I see the bill is very much a human rights issue. it poses one simple question to us as members of us health That is this should consenting adult males be regarded as criminals in the eyes of the law, because of their sexual preferences and practices, should they be regarded as criminals in the eyes of the law because of their sexual preferences and practices. So this build challenges us to put aside our prejudices, our predispositions, and it appeals to the rational side of each of us for some tolerance and acceptance of the sexual orientation and practices of others. I myself take the view that what consenting adults do in private is none of my business and it is not the business of the law of this land. Accordingly, sir, I support the introduction of the bill. I agree with the member for Wellington Central. When she said this, that basic social justice demands that we now pass this bill. It is unjust and unjustifiable to continue to oppress a large section of the population because of their sexual preference. When considering whether or not to decriminalize, sir, I think we should bear in mind that among Western countries with whom we generally compare ourselves, New Zealand shares with Ireland the rather dubious distinction of being the only country to apply blanket criminal sanctions to homosexuality. There is a book out called the world human rights Guide, which gives New Zealand's the top writing of any country in the world on human rights issues together with Denmark and Finland. We score 96% in terms of compliance with generally interest, generally recognized human rights matters. The only block that the authors of that God could find on the human rights record of New Zealand was denied of civil rights to male homosexuals. And I say, sir, that in this country, we could be proud of having a human rights record of pretty close to 100%. If we pass this bill, because that is the only outstanding bluff on our record in the world community. If we look at the clauses of the bill, it in no way promotes homosexuality, it simply removes the criminal sanctions against it. It removes criminal sanctions against consensual homosexual contact between people who consent to subjectivity. The bill ensures that the same protection will be given to adolescent men and boys from homosexual activity as is given to adolescent women and girls from heterosexual activity. In both cases under this bill, sexual Sort of under 12 year olds where the girls or boys will attract the term of imprisonment of up to 10 years. sexual assaults against boys as against girls elsewhere in the law, age between 12 and 16 will attract I term of imprisonment of up to seven years. that constitutes, in my view adequate legal protection for male and female children and adolescents from predatory adults. And unfortunately, they are about practical protection from predatory adults, of course, depends on greater public awareness of the problem of sexual abuse in New Zealand, and it is one of the more unfortunate myths which is sometimes propounded about homosexuality, that somehow child molestation is connected with it. In fact, all the research evidence suggests that it is overwhelmingly at all heterosexuals who offend in the area of challenge Milla Scala station. And it is certainly no argument against this bill to link child molestation to homosexuality. That is not a fair link [01:23:09] at all. Helen, government [01:23:13] and other areas to in the area of indecent assault men and decently assaulted by other men will be treated with the same severe men who assault other men will be treated with the same severity as men who assault women, [01:23:27] that is [01:23:28] with a maximum term of seven years imprisonment and the keeping of brothels again, the law is brought into line so that keeping a brothel for either male or female prostitution is treated with equal severity in the eyes of the law. I mentioned sir unfortunate myths about homosexuality. There are many prevalent in this community, and they prevent some people considering the question of decriminalization of homosexual activity and a rational fashion One myth is that homosexuality is somehow and or abnormal practice. Nothing could be further [01:24:08] from the truth. [01:24:10] Homosexuality is part of the normal range of human sexual responses. Kinsey's research in the United States 40 years ago, bears that out. And I want to remind members of the House what that research found 40 years ago, it found that 37% of all white males have some overt homosexual experience between 16 and 55 25% have more than incidental homosexual experience. for at least three years during that age span. I teen percent have at least as much homosexual as heterosexual experience for at least three years of their lives. 13% have more homosexual and heterosexual experience for at least three years 10% or more or less extreme exclusively homosexual for at least three years, I percent are exclusively homosexual for at least three years between the ages of 16 and 55 4% are exclusively homosexual for at least three years, for 4% are exclusively homosexual throughout their lives. adolescence, now also find nothing threatening about those findings, nothing threatening about the incidence of homosexuality in the community. And I believe that what that research shows is that there has been widespread homosexual practice for many, many years in the international community forever, in fact, and that is evidence of its normality as one of a range of human experiences. In the end, exclusive homosexual preference is a minority taste. But there is no reason for the minority which prefers that taste to be persecuted. l societies and others, which repressed homosexual expression, do very great psychological damage to those individual human beings who are oriented to homosexuality. And one can well imagine the trauma which is inflicted on people who are told throughout their lives, that their behavior is disgusting or filthy, or when words of that kind a used, it is very important that we remove that stigma. Another myth often propounded is that homosexuality somehow equates with promiscuity. The truth is, of course, that when you have a law like the one we have, it tends to promote promiscuity rather than do the opposite, because the law such as we have at the moment works against the formation of stable relationships, because stable homosexual relationships attract more attention from the snooping neighbor who may alert the authorities and I would hope, sir With the criminalization, we see homosexuals in this community able to form stable relationships with the sanction of the law in saying that one is in no way promoting homosexuality, but recognizing that it exists in the community and saying it should not be an unlawful activity. In conclusion, sir, I want to say that the bill is of course a conscience voted is not a government bill. And individual members will have to make up their own minds on how to vote without the direction from a party whips. I would ask all members to think very carefully before exercising [01:27:40] their conscience on the bill, [01:27:42] because the human and civil rights of other people are in your hands. Members alert prepared to allow their conscience to stand in the way of human rights fulfillment for others are record recommend that those whose initial predisposition is Not to support the measure to give it the right to an introduction and consider the evidence at a later stage. [01:28:06] As Mr. Speaker, many parliamentary observers, would hold the view that the best debates that take place in this chamber are those that surround these difficult conscience issues. And I have to say that although I disagree with many of the people who have spoken in this debate, I would not question their sincerity or their compassion. And it's difficult for members when we don't have the comfort of our caucuses. To try and reach a resolution on these problems. We have to grapple with our own conscience, before we can finally decide how we will vote. I started the point and I disagree. I disagree with a minute for Mandelbrot because I started the point that homosexual behavior is unnatural. Something most of us find at Harvard and showed a no way be encouraged. And I believe that if it is made lawful, there is a risk that it will be more visible, more open, and perhaps younger people will accept it as a normal way of life. Now, that shouldn't happen. But on the other hand, little is achieved by persecuting guys who have taken up a homosexual way of life, particularly if this life is carried out in a private manner, without offending the moral standards of the vast majority of the population. And as a practicing lawyer, I share the thoughts of the member for partners to know and I've also seen something of the agony that's been caused by our existing legislation. Given that situation, Mr. Speaker, I will vote for the best reading of this bill. But I do so with considerable reluctance because in my view, the bill has many defects and I'm not say that I am unlikely to support this bill and its present form beyond the first reading. And I believe that those sentiments are shared by many of my colleagues that I have discussed this matter with [01:30:13] an informal basis. [01:30:15] It will also be writing for the first reading. But this is a serious matter that Parliament should study. It's a serious matter that I select committee should investigate here evidence upon and then report back to this chamber. But I wish to make my position clear [01:30:35] that I although I will vote for this first reading, I would not support this bill in its present form. Beyond that, I cannot countenance the legalization of homosexuality, but I was under the age of 20 years. We all know that teenagers, young and impressionable 16 and 17 year olds Passing through an emotional, transitional period of life. And for my past, the age limit on this legislation should be 20 years of age. Similarly, I have concerned about the human rights amendments in this legislation. Because what that part of the bill is endeavoring to do is to establish that a homosexual lifestyle is no different from a heterosexual one. And at that point, I depart from the thinking [01:31:32] of the author of the bill. [01:31:34] I also believe that the argument [01:31:38] that has been put forward by proponents of this legislation is spacious. No doctor, or any authority [01:31:47] would do anything that would discourage [01:31:50] a homosexual person from seeking help. And I don't believe the law, as it is at the present time can be shown to have the sky homosexuals, they believe they may suffer from AIDS from seeking such a system. So, while I state I will vote for the first reading of the bill, there is much that I oppose. And I believe I speak for many members of the House, [01:32:17] who will also be voting for the first reading, [01:32:19] but hold similar reservations [01:32:22] wallbang [01:32:26] my words a few and my message abundantly clear. [01:32:32] I have a deep, sincere belief that what is written in the Bible is the right and proper way to conduct and discipline one's life, [01:32:43] irrespective [01:32:44] of whether you are religious by intonation or not. [01:32:48] Christian teaching is quite explicit on sodomy, and personal behavior. In the New Testament, the general Epistle of Jews false teachers versus 16 I quote, [01:33:04] these are numerous. complainers, [01:33:09] working after their own less, and the Male Speaker, great swelling words. Having means person in admiration because of advantage in the crowd. [01:33:24] Homosexuality is not only an unnatural act, it is now a very dangerous one. [01:33:32] With the epidemic like spread of AIDS almost upon us. [01:33:38] I will not be responsible [01:33:41] for passing legislation that is going to place my fellow New Zealanders at greater risk for this deadly disease. [01:33:51] The people of his phone did not elect me to this office to be responsible. What I believe is important Right now, Mr. Speaker, the basic fundamental needs [01:34:05] of our people, the right to our home, [01:34:08] a job of work, and a decent standard of living. Those are our prior [01:34:16] did that many Christians would now consider me to be a total backslider and probably not without some foundation. So I have looked, I've been able to look upon this whole area of legislation from many angles, I have many homosexual friends who I consider and hold in the highest esteem. So, let me say at the outset, I seek no retribution for the for anybody else nor oppression for any other people who have any other different preference, different preference and I have and people will always be different, and I always have been, and I seek to see nobody put in a situation which compromises their civil rights are there others But it is a complicated question, Mr. Speaker. And the first question I must ask it, is it the purpose of this house to be concerned with the nation's morals? Well, of course the answer has to be yes. You do not allow me to go home and have intercourse with my daughter. And for very good reason. Because through the product, the vet connection would be a mutation. [01:35:28] It is the job of this house, Mr. Speaker, to consider the marvels of a nation when it comes to censorship. [01:35:36] Without a doubt, this house is concerned with morals and moral standards and moral guidelines. [01:35:46] The next question is do I represent my electric? [01:35:50] Now I have been asked Have I done a referendum in my electorate? It is hardly my fault if we had the crudest form of democracy in the world and I certainly do not expect to go My expense to have to make this democratic system work in this country to do a referendum in my electorate. I haven't done an unlit referendum and I believe on issues such as this. It is important that I as a member representing my electorate, Mike, Mike Lee views clear and unquestionable. The second question I must ask, Mr. Speaker, is that one of civilization is civilization something without beginning an end? Is it just a mutant that evolves along? Or? Or is it the order of man and woman and a destiny that we have control which demands a purpose? I believe we are here for a purpose, the purpose of human life and the purpose of human betterment. And if it is, if we are here for a purpose, then it is incumbent upon us as legislators to to provide reasonable guidelines as to how that society should evolve. If we are here without purpose No beginning no end. Why do we dissipate so much time talking about the nuclear war, we might as well evolve into dust because nothing was ever gained from us being here and nothing will be lost. Five believers and the purpose of men to decide on the destiny is destiny. And for that reason, I am speaking on this bill for that reason, I oppose the nuclear arms race. But I was people who would pull quotes from the Bible, I must say it is a grand book, a grand book and the quote that always impresses me his left he who is without sin cast the first stone and perhaps Mr. Speaker, that's why we don't see many broken windows. Now, Mr. Speaker, I've seen the list which is going around the who are the good supporters and who and, and I noticed mr. speaker that I am on the list of the bad people. I don't consider myself bed Further to that, Mr. Speaker, I don't consider others bad either. But I do consider it as the job of this house to set some guideline, which the nation should follow. I have three simple questions in conclusion, Mr. Speaker, is homosexuality in the natural order of things? I think not. Does it have purpose for ongoing civilization? I think not. Is it productive for the future of our civilization? I think not. [01:38:36] For those reasons, Mr. Speaker, I will vote against the first reading. [01:38:41] Richard naughty. [01:38:44] I must say that I am in strongly in support of this bill, and that I congratulate the member for women can central for introducing my commitment to this change goes back a very long time. been a member of the conversation. Law Reform society since the middle 1960s. And my first speech as a candidate for election to this, this parliament, I stated, my commitment to bring in this reform and in my first speech in this house, I also committed myself as a member for Eden, I think it is important to date that the issue was rise in the previous election campaign and that Electra and that it is important that that should not be an issue in the future that this change can enable equal access to power and responsibility to all persons and that this bill will help to bring this about. I don't agree with those who say that we shouldn't be considering this matter at this time. There are other more urgent matters I consider it a vital and urgent matter for significant growth. From the community denied their rights, to equality, and to human decency and compassion, as the current law does, it is fundamentally a question of human rights, both individually and collectively, and the quality of treatment to all and activities which are clearly consenting and knowledge about is the right of all. I record that this is the private member's bill that is not in any sense the Government Bill and therefore it is up to us each individual to determine our views on it. I reject the idea. And the evidence is very clear. That homosexual or for that matter hit for a sexual preference is developed through corruption by word or deed by others. It is nonsense. And that even Let's make sure all access self thought through oppression creates undetermined sexual orientation and identity. People's sexual identity is largely determined before the age of 16. And it is not something which is achieved in this sort of oppressive way. In that sense. Women who are just above the age of 16 must be considered to be in just as much danger from older men, as young men from all domain in that sense, we should look at this in an equal sense. And I think it's the what's the current law operating as it is. Those people in their late teens and early 20s for home they may be some crazy of ensuring the sexual identity and in fact, dealing with sexual problems that in fact, while particular x illegal, there is the difficulty of obtaining the counseling and advice that is necessary for them to seek in order to determinants in particular, the lack of access to knowledge and information on this matter is something which intensifies feelings of sexual oppression and inadequacy and must be changed both within the schools and elsewhere. And in particular, is has been raised before the question of sexually transmitted diseases such as aids, it is vital that people can seek the information that they need that is openly available. It is not just a matter of being able to go to their doctor or through a clinic if they feel that they have a disease that It's a matter of the matter being out in the open and being able to obtain the information that they need in a clear and determined way and that being available in the community at large. I reject happily the view that homosexuals are predominantly child molesters. And fact this other subset in this debate, that is a problem [01:43:25] that arises with five time mistake Cheryl and hit for sexual activity. And it is predominantly a problem with heterosexual men with respect to young women. We must deal with this equally and in particular is quite clear in the bill that the current levels of penalty and social and other action against those who have sexual activity with minors or people of information intellectual ability remain in the law and that is quite clear. So that is not an issue. The risk factors been raised that homosexual cannot be procreative. And yet surely for all of us in this house and outside Now, speaking of affection, physical affection, is very rarely carried out for that purpose and to deny the expression of physical affection to a significant section of the community, because of them is quite ludicrous. Richard telegrams asking us to oppose this change. Most of the church leaders in the country support the change the conferences, of most of the major churches have endorsed the need for change on many occasions. A Methodist Presbyterian Presbyterians and others come readily to mind those people who dayla Catholic Church, those people who work with in the areas of sexual Christians, the psychiatrists, the social workers, these people have come out for the need for change in this area. It is a question. I respect that. People find that a parent to contemplate acts that are contrary to their own personal sexual identity, it is crucial and why not one's own development that one set boundaries for oneself. And the other types of activity therefore seem particularly abhorrent and unpleasant. But that fact should not get us in Parliament to legislate, to make our particular standards of sexual behavior and orientation to be enforced on others for whom history sexual activities for them seem just as natural and apparent, and the idea that it is unnatural when it has been a consistent activity by a substantial minority in our community and old societies in all ages, whatever the law has been in those societies clearly shows that it is a natural as natural as left handedness or other forms of activity and personal characteristics which are in the minority. And this the Kinsey report says more than a third of miles have had sexual activity to the point of orgasm at some stage in their life, it is normal. Enter this equation of removing the myths and, and, and restoring the question of basic human rights, basic decency and equality I support the change required in the human race. thing to protect the rights of homosexuals in employment. I say that the referendum has been carried out in the base and the public. And that every race with public opinion poll quite clearly shows that a majority of people now clearly support this change. It is what the people I'm sure in my electorate as and others want. It is something that I have committed myself to and the messages of support have been overwhelmingly in favor, I've only had two messages against I think that members should take the courage and get rid of this overview oppressive legislation and the nivel. The the question to be to get rid of the suppression and to give people their rights as human beings which is long overdue. [01:48:00] Paris. [01:48:03] National by private member's bill was, of course the right of all members of parliament. [01:48:08] There has been a long standing convention in this house, that those who [01:48:12] are in cabinet the one of the secretaries or whips. [01:48:15] Well, in such events serve give the bill over to somebody on the backbench a long standing decade old decades old convention. [01:48:23] And I want to say to the mover of this bill [01:48:25] that she does her colleagues. [01:48:28] Because out in the public, the perception will be that this is the way of party bill Make no mistake. [01:48:34] And so this is the second time this member has done that. [01:48:38] And I want to say to her she wants to have [01:48:40] this sort of what she calls reform but before parliament, [01:48:44] then she should do her colleagues service and handed over to a backbench member [01:48:48] to do it without the constraints of [01:48:50] past convention. Now the [01:48:52] big I'm sorry to interrupt the honorable member at this point, but the time has come with a call on [01:48:58] the other members for [01:49:01] wanting consensual in reply. [01:49:05] Thank you, speaker. I'd like to thank all the members of this house who have contributed to this debate. I think, on the whole, it has been a serious and constructive debate. And perhaps it's a pity that we can't, as one of the members suggested to have more debates that are taken as seriously as this. [01:49:23] And I [01:49:24] in particular, like to thank those who have spoken in favor of the bill is an issue which will not necessarily always in the invite to nearly cross and I appreciate the fact that apart from voting for it, they've been prepared to stand up and speak their minds on it. I have a couple of comments to make on some of the things that have been said. Some people have expressed what they had say is concern and compassion for homosexuals, but said that although they feel that they I feel that homosexual activity is so wrong. I would suggest to them then that they should consider voting for the bill, at least at this stage because the second half of the bill concerning the Human Rights Commission deals with discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation, nothing to do with homosexual activity. And if they are two trends, further concerning the compassionate they say they have through to reality then at least they're part of the bill should gain the support, about to comment on some other max relax that were made. The member for hierarchy said that the evidence to support the introduction of who was just not there, he is absolutely wrong. All repeatable, social and medical research points to the fact that sexual orientation is established at a [01:50:51] very, very early [01:50:52] age. And you don't change that by having a law which bans homosexual activity for [01:50:59] adults. [01:51:00] The name of hierarchy also asked why such rapidity as he called it in the introduction, the bill? Well, all I can say to that is there was no rapidity I just didn't feel it was terribly necessary for me to send information on my intentions to people who are new, about to organize a campaign against the bill. There has been much public discussion on this issue. There has been much since I have been in Parliament. There's been much discussion amongst members on this issue. And I'm quite sure that nobody was under any illusion that they would not be some, at some stage a bill on this [01:51:38] issue. [01:51:39] The main of the hierarchy also talked about moral laxity, and in the next brief wondered aloud about the direction of government policy. And I just want to say again, and for the benefit of the member for hierarchy, and the benefit of the member for Invercargill, who talked about the necessity for a private member's bill to be given a space on the order by the government. This is not a government measure, and it's no use the member pack or anger and hierarchy and Invercargill trying to make it one. It is not. Of course, it is correct that there must be a space given on the order paper by the government. And I'm very pleased and I'd like to thank my colleagues for giving me the space which a private member needs to be able to introduce private business. I'd like to thank them. I did my caucus colleagues the courtesy of telling them yesterday that I intended to seek leave to introduce the bill. They made a courtesy yesterday of saying yes, they would allow a space on the order paper. It has never before been discussed in the government caucus. Mr. Speaker, the member Invercargill was mentioned the list and I'll just like to make a few comments on that. I have not at any time issued any list of MPs to anyone, any less that the member for in the cargo holds was not compiled by me, and P gives it to the Sunday news as I have been told he is going to and I certainly haven't seen it, then he cannot say that that list was compiled by the member for Wellington central because it was not. Mr. Speaker. I want to just mention one more issue that was commented on by the leader of the opposition, who said in relation to the AIDS issue, that the state of the law would not affect the treatment of any disease. That is not the issue. I know. And I have great faith and the fact that our New Zealand doctors will treat people when they need treatment, but it is not treatment I'm concerned about it is prevention. A public education campaign requires cooperation from the groups at risk at the moment, the prime group at risk homosexuals, who are at present defined as criminal under the law, that is I think, as I said, one of the compelling reasons for change. But the major reason, Mr. Mr. Speaker, is that the current law on the statute book, a law, which the member of Palmerston North has showed, is actually almost an historical accident is no longer relevant to what people in our society now think it is wrong and it should be repealed. That is why I am moving this bill. I believe that there must be very strong protection for children. And I have seen in the bill an age of consent for 16. I feel that as a rational approach, because that is the age for heterosexual activity. I would ask all members to vote for the bill and I will be moving if it gets introduced that it go to a select committee, and that will be the stage when the arguments can be examined. I'd like to thank the house for giving me this time. [01:54:59] The question is at least given to bring in the homosexual law reform [01:55:03] bill. Those who are in favor will say [01:55:06] Aye. [01:55:08] Those who had the country opinion will say no. [01:55:13] The eyes have [01:55:17] been called for [01:55:18] ring the bell. The eyes will go to the rides, the nose will go to the lip [01:55:24] tellers for the eyes driven Maillard and the Catherine Regan [01:55:31] tell us for the nose, [01:55:32] Mr. Jones and Mr. braver [01:55:39] the bells ringing in parliament building seminar all members to the chamber to vote in a division will return to the house when proceedings regime until in an interlude of music [01:56:01] The question is that may be given to bring in the homosexual law reform bill. The [01:56:08] eyes 51. The nose 24 leave will be given unlock the doors are not homosexual law reform the [01:56:19] first reading. [01:56:22] Brand wireless to Speaker I move that the homosexual reform will be referred to the statutes revision committee, the proceedings of the committee during the hearing of evidence on the bill to [01:56:31] be open to accredited representatives of the news media. [01:56:35] The question is that this bill be referred to the statute revision committee [01:56:39] committee with the usual proviso [01:56:42] concerning the news media. Those who are in favor will say Aye that is what the country opinion will say no [01:56:48] the eyes have it.
This page features computer generated text of the source audio - it is not a transcript. The Artificial Intelligence Text is provided to help users when searching for keywords or phrases. The text has not been manually checked for accuracy against the original audio and will contain many errors.