Turnbull: Anti-LGBTI+ posters part of democratic marriage debate

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has responded to hateful and misleading posters that were spotted in Melbourne yesterday, declaring they belong as part of a democratic debate.

Speaking with hit92.9’s Em Rusciano and Harley Breen, the Prime Minister denounced the signs as “hurtful”, but did not commit to banning the posters which listed unscientific claims about the children of LGBTI+ parents.

“People will often say in any democratic debate, they’ll often say things that are hurtful and unfair and sometimes cruel, that is part of a debate,” Turnbull said this morning.

“The only way to stop people saying these things that you find hurtful is to shut down free speech.”

While the PM urged Australians to be respectful during this public debate, he advised said those with friends and family that were hurt by the hateful language should “stand up for them.”

“I deplore disrespectful abusive language, whether it is directed at young gay people or people of other religions or people of other races. Mutual respect and a respectful debate is what we should have in Australia,” Turnbull said.

Host Em Rusciano was not satisfied with the Prime Minister’s response, telling him that “his respectful debate is in the toilet.”

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten, The Australian Greens and marriage equality advocates have unequivocally condemned the posters. Just.equal spokesperson Rodney Croome yesterday called on the Prime Minister to set parameters for a respectful debate.

“We have long warned the Government that a plebiscite or postal vote on marriage equality would amplify extremist and hateful views – yet the Prime Minister assured us of a respectful debate,” Croome said.

“It is now incumbent on the Prime Minister, who initiated the postal vote campaign, to take responsibility and denounce anti-LGBTI vilification like this poster.”

OIP Staff

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