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Congratulations to Paul Kelly for his incisive column (“Plebiscite politics turn dangerous”, 24/8). The homosexual lobby has used the argument that a plebiscite would be hurtful because it would unleash homophobic and bigoted comments from opponents of same-sex “marriage”, forgetting that for decades Christians have had to endure mockery at gay pride marches, including effigies of Fred Nile’s head, and the antics of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.

The latter is a particularly nasty demonstration of anti-Catholic bigotry because our nuns are among the citizens most dedicated to empathising with the disadvantaged, educating the poor and helping the sick.

Babette Francis, Toorak, Vic

Paul Kelly’s analysis of the potential divisive nature of a plebiscite accurately reveals why proposing to alter this historical social pillar is not only vexed, but will also have far-reaching civil consequences.

This debate is actually one of giving justice to definition, not discrimination. Can the term marriage fully encapsulate the fundamental biological and reproductive differences of a heterosexual and homosexual union? The gay lobby has morphed the previously used same-sex marriage to that of marriage equality, which instantly presumes that wedlock is somehow unequal.

Labor, traditionally a Catholic, family-centric party, which just over a decade ago affirmed marriage as being between a man and a woman — has tied itself in knots through its recent championing of the causes of the trendy elite.

What would suffice as a workable cultural compromise, would be a bipartisan championing of an alternative descriptor for gay unions, besides the term marriage.

This would give due relational recognition to its biological differences, while not declaring a sacrosanct covenant to be retrospectively declared invalid and inferior and in need of supposed improvement.

Peter Waterhouse, Craigieburn, Vic

The Pope has recently said no to same-sex marriage on behalf of 1.2 billion Catholics, and a Chinese court has ruled against same-sex marriage, on behalf of 1.3 billion Chinese. About 1.6 billion Muslims do not accept anything but marriage between a man and a few women. So, can 4.1 billion people be wrong?

What about the silent majority in Australia who are getting thoroughly sick of having the views of a vocal minority shoved down their throats, especially on the ABC and SBS. When will Australia’s silent majority speak instead of cowering from these attention seekers?

Trying to normalise homosexual behaviour is what is getting the silent majority off-side. Even Get Up! can’t overcome what is biologically impossible between same-sex couples.

We don’t need our politicians to tell us what to think, so let the people have their say with the plebiscite.

Derrick Austin,Currumbin Waters, Qld

It is surprising there are sections of society that do not trust democracy. They say, just leave important decisions about the structure of society to powerbrokers, faction leaders and puppets of the union movement, who happen to have been elected to parliament, but without any declared position on a proposed redefinition of the word marriage and a restructuring of society to provide for traditional heterosexual marriage and homosexual unions to all come under the banner of marriage.

When will those seeking change stop deceiving us into thinking that the definition of marriage has already been changed by their persistent use of the words gay marriage — a contradiction in terms.

Peter R. Graham, Sydney, NSW