ACL: ‘homosexual lifestyle more hazardous to health than smoking’Online Only, Top Highlights, Around the World Wednesday, September 5th, 2012
HOBART, Tasmania – Jim Wallace, the managing director of the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) has stated that smoking is healthier than a homosexual lifestyle.
Wallace made these remarks in a debate on gay marriage with Green leader Christine Milne at the University of Tasmania LawFest in Hobart this morning.
Wallace, a strong opponent of same-sex marriage said, “I think we’re going to owe smokers a big apology when the homosexual community’s own statistics for its health – which it presents when it wants more money for health – are that it has higher rates of drug-taking, of suicide, it has the life of a male reduced by up to 20 years,” he told the audience. “The life of smokers is reduced by something like seven to 10 years and yet we tell all our kids at school they shouldn’t smoke.”
According to a report by AAP, Wallace continued to justify his remarks after the debate, “But what I’m saying is we need to be aware that the homosexual lifestyle carries these problems and … normalizing the lifestyle by the attribution of marriage, for instance, has to be considered in what it does … encouraging people into it,” he said.
AAP described the discussion between Wallace and Milne as a debate with “little love lost” between the pair.
Milne accused the ACL of homophobia and said marriage discrimination was a contributor to health concerns, “What I know is that the mental health issues for young gay people particularly are certainly increased when discrimination occurs.”
Next month Australian prime minister, Julia Gillard is due to address the ACL national conference and a gay advocacy group has called on Gillard to reconsider her address.
Gillard is well-known for her opposition to same-sex marriage saying that she believes the Marriage Act is appropriate in its current form.
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