Letter to the editor

Bendigo Weekly | Bendigo Weekly | 15-Sep-2017


Time to have Faith

Time I fully support the Kangaroo Flat Community Enterprise request to name the new Olympic swimming pool in memory of Bendigo’s only Olympic gold medal swimmer – Faith Leech.

As a youngster at the time, I remember how Faith’s victory brought great honour to the Bendigo district and beyond.

The time has arrived for the City of Greater Bendigo to give honour to a great Bendigonian.

John Forbes OAM KSJ,


Environmental sense

The sun is not an alternative form of energy.

Neither is wind, wave, or geothermal. 

In fact, energy from these sources has been occurring for thousands, millions or billions of years depending on your scientific or religious world view.

Continuing to harness and integrate naturally occurring forms of energy to meet every day energy need makes economic and environmental sense.

Chris Brown,



Just human rights

I am a woman, a mother, a daughter and a friend. I am employed, I pay tax, and contribute to society in many positive ways. 

I am a consumer and a producer. I own a home and a car and care for two fish, one dog and seven chickens. Oh, and importantly, I am human. 

The roles and labels assigned to me are irrelevant when it comes to my right to experience equality. 

They have no bearing on whether I am considered equal or not – and nor should they. 

If those components of me have no bearing on who I can marry, then why should the gender of the person I love play a part? 

The only important factor is that I am human and should have an equal right to human rights.

Rachael Sanders,


Outcomes not poorer

Dr Bardsley’s letter, Bendigo Weekly,  September 8, in pointing out the AMA’s endorsement of same-sex marriage, inadvertently or deliberately, failed to mention that hundreds of doctors have urged the AMA to withdraw its support for SSM and accused the AMA of misleading the public. 

In a 15-page critique delivered to the AMA at the end of July, the doctors identified a number of misleading clinical claims, in particular the AMA’s assertion that there is no peer-reviewed evidence of poorer outcomes for children of same-sex parented families.

The critique declares this to be unequivocally false. It went on to say, “We reference peer-reviewed articles that do find poorer outcomes for children raised by same sex couples, and we also show that the AMA was aware of this evidence”. 

A petition signed by several hundred medical practitioners declares, “The AMA’s position statement is fatally flawed, not least by its poor scholarship. 

It is unworthy of the AMA and I call for its immediate and public retraction. 

Frank Salmon,


Fly the flag

It is with great delight to see that the Ballarat council have chosen to fly the Rainbow Pride flag in support of marriage equality specifically and the LGBTQI community more widely. 

I have found the same sex marriage postal survey to be extremely divisive and I would love to see our City of Greater Bendigo be truly “Greater” and likewise fly the flag. 

The young people of Bendigo should not be subjected to the homophobia and transphobia being spouted by the No campaign. 

It divides us and makes Bendigo an unsafe place for the LGBTQI community. We need our council to show leadership during this difficult time. Flying a flag would be the easiest action to show such leadership. 

Jessica Cola,


The value of marriage

Four years ago I proposed to my partner while looking out over the stunning scenery of the Blue Mountains in NSW. 

We have been together for seven years now with the same love and care for each other. 

We worked through many challenges together from running a restaurant, moving interstate and supporting each other in career changes. 

In the eyes of the law we are a de facto same-sex couple. 

While we have many discrimination and relationship protections there are still many areas where we have less protections than our officially recognised married friends. 

And unlike our married heterosexual friends we cannot even hold hands when walking down the street for fear of being attacked. 

In the eyes of these kinds of people our relationship is “gross”, “sinful” or “not a real relationship”. 

This postal plebiscite is an opinion poll only on whether to change the legal definition of a marriage from a man and a women to two consenting adults. 

This is not about safe schools program. 

This is not about whether same sex couples can adopt or have children through surrogacy (this is already allowable under state laws). 

This is not about religious freedoms. 

Already Australian churches and church-owned schools are allowed full freedom to make their own decisions on who to marry, who can attend their schools and who can work for them. 

I would expect these church rights to be continued. 

Countries were marriage equality has been legalised such as Scotland, England, Denmark and others protect the right of churches to make their own decisions. 

Is this postal plebiscite a change to traditional marriage? 

Marriage has changed dramatically over the years. 

Pre-1961 in Australia, marriages between indigenous people and non-indigenous persons were restricted. 

In the Bible, rape victims could be forced to marry their rapists, polygamy and child brides were generally accepted. 

Can we really argue that condemnations found in the Bible against certain specific homosexual behaviours can be applied against loving relationships between two people regardless of gender? 

Consider that the Old Testament condemnations were likely against temple prostitutes at certain non-Judaic temples. 

Can we really apply the condemnations of Paul against pederasty (paedophilia) between older teachers and their young male pupils to relationships between two consenting adults? 

In fact we have very limited historical cases of relationships like modern day equal relationships of the same gender. 

I argue that this is because until recently women have not had equal rights and protections to their male counterparts and due to overpopulation there is no need to ensure the survival of your family and country through reproduction. 

Finally the value of marriage has long been in the decline as easily demonstrated by high divorce rates and popular TV shows like Married at First Sight, The Bachelor and The Bachelorette.  

When two people regardless of gender love each other, often for decades in tried and proven relationships want to get married, why aren’t we celebrating? 

Surely it is everyone’s interest rekindle the respect and value of marriage.

Anthony Brown,


Simple choice

The current marriage equality survey is creating such hurt and distress in a society already suffering. 

Surely there are already enough dividing factors present in our community without the need for our government to further marginalise people by denying equality. 

It is a simple thing that will only result in two people who could not marry, now being able to do so. No more. No less. Any other imagined consequence is just that: fantasy. 

Kirrily Flanagan,


Car park trip

I recently had the misfortune to have a fall in the Bunnings car park in Epsom. I wish to sincerely thank Claire and the other wonderful people who came to my aid, the follow -up phone call from Bunnings very much appreciated. To the ambo girls team thank you, awesome service.

A grateful senior citizen.

Joan Pedersen,

White Hills


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