Wellington-based GLBT activist group The Queer Avengers say that everyday New Zealanders’ support for marriage equality undermines the claims of conservative opponents.
The group has called out New Zealand First, the Conservative Party and members of Labour and urges them to treat equality as a matter of principle.
Queer Avenger Bill Logan, who was one of the main advocates for Homosexual Law Reform, says, “Winston Peters and Colin Craig have called for a referendum. Su’a William Silo is calling for Labour to drop the bill to appease Pasifika voters. They’re inventing a silent majority as backwards as they are, but the data says otherwise.”
Logan highlights a recent Research NZ poll, which shows that 60% of voters support marriage equality, while only 34% oppose it. “In fact, Maori and Pasifika voters are more supportive of marriage equality than Pakeha,” Logan points out. “Oppressed communities need to band together, not buy into this racist homophobic divide-and-conquer strategy.”
The Queer Avengers argue conscience votes are a cop-out, because marriage equality is a matter of principle. “Civil equality is fairly basic stuff,” Logan concludes. “Most voters realise that now. It’s time to move on.”
The Queer Avengers are running a campaign under the slogan Beyond Marriage, which underlines further struggles for GLBT and the wider community. This can be found at beyondmarriage.org.nz.