Kelly Makiha is a senior reporter at the Rotorua Daily Post

Editorial: Position on bill far from sensible

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Garth McVicar from the Sensible Sentencing Trust has certainly done some damage to his reputation this week.

The head of the victim's lobby group has submitted to Parliament that changing the law to allow same-sex marriage will be yet another erosion of basic morals and values in society which will in turn lead to an escalation of child abuse, domestic violence and an ever-increasing prison population.

In a nutshell, he's saying if gay people are allowed to marry, crime will go up.


I can only agree with the barrage of flack he's had to cop, particularly on social networking sites Facebook and Twitter, since his submission was made public.

Even his own trust has this week come out distancing itself from his submission. The trust's second-in-command, Ruth Money, put out a statement on Monday wanting people to know he was voicing his concerns in a personal capacity and not as an official spokesman for the Sensible Sentencing Trust.

Labour MP Louisa Wall's Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill is before a select committee which will report to Parliament on February 28. If passed, it could see gay marriage legal by May next year. The committee has received over 20,000 submissions on the bill. Mr McVicar's submission is the only one linking gay marriage to crime.

While Mr McVicar was on the topic of erosion of basic morals and values in society, why didn't he take a look at himself?

His written submission is a disgrace for a grown man.

The submission reads: "The marriage amendment bill will not benefit society at all and will ultimately have detremetal (sic) effect on crime at all levels."

Spelling errors aside, Mr McVicar has done some great work speaking on behalf of victims of crime.

He needs to stick to what he knows.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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