Australia is on the brink of marriage equality and, like it was in the United States before the Supreme Court’s ruling, the sides are getting more and more divisive.
Hateful ad campaigns claiming to defend family values while condemning gay parents have been seen in major cities and in fliers filling mailboxes. “92% of children raised by gay parents are abused, 51% have depression, 72% are obese – STOP THE FAGS,” reads one particularly malicious poster, depicting a crying boy about to be attacked by me win with rainbow belts.
— Dan Leach-McGill (@DanLMcG) August 19, 2017
Another pamphlet making its rounds claims that “homosexuality is a tragedy to the family, a grave to the family bloodline, a curse of family sonlessness.”
Some of the marriage equality "respectful debate" in the letterboxes of Hurstville this morning.
Content warning on this, LGBT friends x pic.twitter.com/qYhL11vMRG
— Sally Rugg (@sallyrugg) August 19, 2017
Of course wherever there is extreme hate, there is guiding support. Australian Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull was quick to condemn the hate speech. “I deplore disrespectful, abusive language whether it is directed at young gay people or people of other religions or other races,” he said, according to The Guardian. “If you have friends who are really distressed by this sort of language, stand up for them, put your arms around them.”
Actor Chris Hemsworth also threw his towel into the ring, urging fellow Aussies to support marriage equality in an Instagram post. “Dear open minded, free speaking, laid back, life loving aussies. Marriage about love and commitment and, in a country based on equal citizenship, it should be available to everyone!”