POLITICS

The 'No' Campaign Against Marriage Equality Has Kicked Off With A Furphy

And a ridiculous one at that.

30/08/2017 2:29 PM AEST | Updated 30/08/2017 2:30 PM AEST
Australian Christian Lobby/YouTube
The Education Minister says the 'No' campaign is trying to conflate marriage equality with other issues.

The idea that a 'yes' vote on same-sex marriage could lead to an overhaul of sex and gender education curriculum is "patently ridiculous", education minister Simon Birmingham says.

Opponents of same-sex marriage released their first television commercial on Tuesday ahead of the postal survey on the issue. The nationally run ad features four women raising concerns their children could be exposed to same-sex relationship advocacy in school if marriage equality is legalised.

Simon Birmingham said on Wednesday that idea is "patently ridiculous."

"The truth is, the reality is that schools in the future, if they are faith-based schools, will be able to teach according to their faith and including according to the definition of marriage, according to their faith," Birmingham said.

"That will be respected in the future as it is today. It is patently ridiculous to suggest that allowing same sex couples to marry is somehow going to see some new wave of teaching reforms sweep across the country. That is just not going to happen.

"This is a simple issue and it should not be conflated with other issues."

The controversial ad has also attracted critcism after a Melbourne principal disputed a mother's claim that her son was told he could wear a dress to school.

"The school told my son that he could wear a dress to school next year if he wanted," said Cella White, who has previously appeared in videos attacking the Safe Schools program, in the 30-second commercial.

But the principal Frankston High told Fairfax that White's claim had no substance.

"We checked with all the teachers, it never happened," Principal John Albiston said.

"I have never had any complaints that we advised the boys they could wear dresses. We didn't offer them that option."

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