Preserve Marriage: Government Should Appeal

May 11, 2017 | 177 Comments

The Preserve Marriage group said they do “not agree with the decision of the OBA Government not to appeal the same-sex marriage ruling” adding that the “OBA Government has made many missteps on the issue of preserving marriage in Bermuda” and they “should responsibly appeal the current ruling.”

Preserve Marriage Bermuda May 11 2017 TC

Government Will Not Appeal Landmark Ruling On Marriage

Winston Godwin and Greg DeRoche filed a legal challenge after their marriage application was declined by Bermuda’s Registrar-General, and the court made a landmark ruling in their favour paving the way for same sex couples to be married in Bermuda, with the Court’s conclusion stating that “common law discriminates against same-sex couples by excluding them from marriage.”

Following the ruling, Minister of Home Affairs Patricia Gordon Pamplin said, “The Government acknowledges the Supreme Court ruling handed down on Friday last and upon legal advice, we have determined that we will not lodge an appeal against the judgment.

“While we accept that wide spread support of this very sensitive and emotive issue of marriage equality is difficult to achieve, we do, however, recognize that as a community we must be able to have open and honest conversations which help to encourage awareness, understanding, tolerance and respect for one another.

“We will abide by the decision of the judiciary, and will implement the necessary steps to ensure compliance with the judgment.”

Preserve Marriage Statement

The statement said, “Preserve Marriage is a very diverse group of persons of all colors, socio-economic status, persons of faith and non-faith. Preserve Marriage is not affiliated with the OBA or PLP, but have persons who represent both political parties, but has a mandate to state the truth to the public regarding the most recent ruling. Due to the overwhelming request from the public to address this issue, it was necessary to release the following…

“Preserve Marriage does not agree with the decision of the OBA Government not to appeal the same-sex marriage ruling. We wish to make it clear that the OBA Government cannot free itself from responsibility for the introduction of same-sex marriage in Bermuda and give the Bermuda people the conclusion, “Well, the courts did it.”. We come to this conclusion based on the following facts:

“First, it was the OBA that introduced “two words and a comma” [sexual orientation,] as the right thing to do for the community. However, it was seen as a hidden agenda by many to bring same-sex marriage to Bermuda.

“As a result, MP Wayne Furbert and MP Kim Wilson asked for an amendment in the Human Rights Act to ensure marriage would remain between a man and a woman in Bermuda. OBA Attorney General at the time, Mark Pettingill assured PLP MP Wayne Furbert, the entire House of Parliament and the Bermuda people that the Matrimonial Causes Act was sufficient to ensure marriage remained between a man and a woman.

“He stated, “…it is not a valid fear or concern that someone can… sensibly, in law, run off and try and apply at the Registry to have a same-sex marriage… It would have to be “no” because the law is in place.” He is now the lawyer who represented the same-sex couple to introduce same-sex marriage to Bermuda, challenging the very law he stated was secure.

“Secondly, the Supreme Court of Bermuda ruled in the Bermuda Bred Case, which allowed a non- Bermudian who was in a committed same-sex relationship with a Bermudian to reside and work in Bermuda “as a spouse”. This ruling was not appealed nor challenged by the current Government.

“Third, initially the OBA Government was against the referendum because Minister Gordon-Pamplin falsely stated the rights of the minority would be trampled upon by the rights of the majority, which was contrary to the European Court rulings. Eventually, the Premier called for a referendum in compliance with the European Court of Human Rights that our Human Rights Act falls under, which has stated governments should weigh the prevailing community interest of its citizens. [Oliari and Others vs. 2015 Paragraphs 76 and 175].

“However, he not only told people how to vote, but then stated that the referendum would be non-binding. These two factors had an obvious impact on the number of persons who voted: the referendum, while overwhelmingly against civil unions and same-sex marriage in Bermuda, failed to reach the appropriate level of voter participation. This result factored into the Supreme Court’s decision [Paragraph 134 of the ruling].

“Fourth, when MP Wayne Furbert brought the Human Rights Act amendment to the House of Parliament to fortify marriage in Bermuda last year, it passed in Parliament, even though the Premier abstained from voting and it was voted against by the OBA Attorney General Trevor Moniz. However, the bill was then struck down by all but one of the OBA Senators.

“As reported, “Senator Michael Fahy, Senator Georgia Marshall, Senator Jeff Baron and Senator Lynne Woolridge of the One Bermuda Alliance… all voted against the bill, which they labelled regressive and an infringement on Bermuda’s human rights laws.” Senator Baron went as far to say it was an amendment of hate [that statement went unchallenged], which not only incites members of the LGBT community to misunderstand those who desire to preserve marriage, but such a statement is contrary to a 2016 ruling of the European Court. “The European Court of Human Rights confirmed the decision of the French Supreme Court, affirming that there is no discrimination if a state denies the right to marry to two adults of the same-sex.” [Summary ruling of Charpentier vs. France June 2016].

“Fifth, the OBA Government has not held the Human Rights Commission accountable, which wrongly claimed that same-sex marriage is a human right. We must remember that Bermuda’s Human Rights Act falls under the European Convention. As a result the Human Rights Commission has a mandate to uphold the Convention, and not go against it.

“The European Court that has ruled over 6 times that same-sex marriage is not a human right. “Article 12 [the right to marry] cannot be construed as imposing an obligation on the contracting states to grant access to marriage to same-sex couples.” [Austria vs. Kopf 2010; Gas and Dubuis vs. France 2012; X and Others vs. Austria 2013; Hamalainen vs. Finland 2014; Oliari and Others vs. Italy 2015; Chapin and Charpentier vs. France 2016].

“Finally, the OBA Government has made many missteps on the issue of preserving marriage in Bermuda, including: [i] stating that the Matrimonial Causes Act was sufficient to fortify marriage after introducing “two words and a comma”; [ii] failing to address or appeal the Bermuda Bred case; [iii] failing to address the misleading misstatements of its Ministers and Senators that same-sex marriage is a human right; [iv] failing to hold the Human Rights Commission accountable for not upholding the provisions of the European Convention of Human Rights and the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights; [v] informing the Bermuda people that the referendum would be non-binding; [vi] ignoring the will of the people of Bermuda who voted “no” in the referendum by failing to address the issue immediately following the referendum; and [vii] failing to appeal this current decision.

“The matter of same-sex marriage should go back to Parliament as one judge should not decide the future culture for our children. The European Court understand that the redefinition of marriage has great cultural and social change on a country and its people, which will only be exponential on such a small island as Bermuda.

“The European Court that Bermuda’s Human Rights Act must adhere to stated, “…As matters stand, the question whether or not to allow same-sex marriage is left to the regulation by the national law of the Contracting State [Bermuda]… The Court reiterates that it must not rush to substitute its own judgment in place of that of the national authorities [Parliament], who are best placed to assess and respond to the needs of society…” [ECtHr, Schalk and Kopf v Austria, Application no 30141/41].

“Bermuda is now the only country in the world to introduce same-sex marriage in which one person has decided for all. The reality is that although many who support traditional marriage do not affiliate themselves with a religion or a church, we cannot ignore the fact that they have a conviction that there is a God who created us and who created the sacred institution of marriage for mankind.

“Based on the ruling of the European Convention that we fall under, the will of the people of Bermuda and the deep rooted cultural, social and moral change that comes with the redefinition of marriage, the OBA should responsibly appeal the current ruling.”

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  1. I heart 441 says:

    I stand with PM group!

    • Daylily says:

      I stand with PM & Bermuda and Bermuda’s right to have its own culture. 170 Countries around the world have not chosen to redefine marriage. I stand with Preserve Marriage Bermuda.

      • Frosty says:

        Ok great

      • Onion says:

        More are changing every day and moving into the 21st Century. It’s nice of Bermuda to be among the first.

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        Should that culture be the continuation of a segregation and discrimination of who get equality under the law. You realize that some of those 170 countries you believe we should stand with, they imprison, torture, disfigure or murder same sex persons for being born the way they are. I for one believe we should be continuing to evolve our sense of social justice and equality, and recognize we still have generations to go. But how are those generations to follow supposed to continue that path of self improvement if we don’t first set a better example than those who came before us.

      • rumsoak says:

        Who gives a rats …

      • frank says:

        It looks like the Oba once again has not told
        The truth

        • Mike Hind says:

          Nah. That would be Preserve Marriage and its supporters.

      • Porgy says:

        Typically the progressive countries are the ones that have legalized SSM. Isnt that odd? Using 2000 year old books written by desert dwellers who kept slaves and thought the earth was flat is definitely the way we should go. Like all matters pertaining to a minority group’s rights throughout history, PM is going to wake up sometime in the future and realize they are on the wrong side of history.

      • JAOS says:

        Human rights is not a “culture”. Are you referring to a culture of exclusion?

      • Mike Hind says:

        Of course you do.
        You’re just as bigoted as they are.

      • Mike Hind says:

        Oh, and an ad populum “Well, everyone else is doing it!” argument isn’t a reason to go back to discrimination against Bermudians for absolutely no reason.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      See, here is the thing that PM is leaving out… deliberately. In all the rulings by the ECHR about same sex marriage, they say that there must be a means in the laws by which same sex couples can receive the same legal standings that marriage offers. So PM is wrong when they try to use the ECHR ruling to promote their agenda of deny equality under the law.

      So it comes down to the word ‘marriage’ and who owns it… not PM or any group that supports them. Marriage is owned by those who embark on it, those who commit to its principles, and its principles far out date the singular Christian version that PM says it is. Marriage is older than those Christian values, and has been and still is a far more diverse institution than the one that PM says we must all adhere to. And in the context of democracy, Marriage is a legal standing, and as democracy demands through the primary principle of equality under the law and the mechanisms that uphold that primary principle like freedom of religion, it’s standing must be granted equally ro those who would commit to it. PM does not have the right to tell another what marriage should be to them and the ECHR does not support them in their pursuit to deny equality under the law to others, who’s love they believe they have the moral self righteousness to judge.

    • Rightok says:

      OBA… Why ask for my vote on the referendum and gather the overwhelming statistics that Bermudians oppose Gay Marriage then choose not to represent the people and appeal the court proceedings? OBA is weak.

      OBA…….What was the point of the referendum if you didn’t care about the people anyway???? Why did you ask me to vote??? I can’t stand this government they do whatever they want.

      • Mike Hind says:

        The LAW says that marriage equality is the right thing to do.

        If you want to change it back, you have to now give a reason to do so.

        Do you have one?

    • Father Ted says:

      I think ON should also stone adulterers.

  2. frank says:

    once again this same minister has not done her job
    and the oba has not done theirs
    bring on the election

    • blankman says:

      No idea how you get to somebody not doing their job. The gov’t obtained a legal opinion and were told that they’d lose on appeal. So why should they waste time doing so?

    • Mike Hind says:

      No. They did their job. They followed the law.

  3. NO MORE WAR says:

    I agree they should appeal.

  4. puzzled says:

    Don’t even have to read more than two words and a comma and maybe one line.

    I’ll just leave it as stopid /stooped/stupid

    All about them.
    Nothing to do with helping unless on Go.payroll.

  5. Michael w says:

    These people with their PRETEND friend are at the lower end or the GENE POOL,

    • Steven says:

      If the world is as you say it is, who cares? Nothing matters and we are all just molecules in motion. You have no free will and no value whatsoever, if we believe the world is as you say it is. As Richard Dawkins says, from the atheists perspective there is no good, no evil, no right and no wrong. Just blind, pitiless indifference. So if that’s what you believe, why spend a single second of your short, meaningless existence being indignant about this subject? You have no basis for making moral judgments of any kind and whether we are loving our neighbors or eating them, in the end it makes no difference.

      Clearly you don’t truly and consistently hold to the atheists worldview because you know deep down that there is a God, you just don’t want him to exist because that means moral accountability.

      • Ride says:

        @Steven
        You misquote Richard Dawkins. The actual statement is,

        “The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference.”

        This statement speaking to the lack of design observed in the universe and the absence of any indications that there are mystical good and evil forces operating within it. It a statement that the universe exist and, by any measure, is indifferent to humankind’s existence.

        This statement in no way states that our lives are meaningless or that morality should not continue to evolve. Just because the universe is indifferent to our existence does not mean that we should be indifferent to our existence.

      • sandgrownan says:

        Fundamental lack of understanding of the atheist position.

      • Porgy says:

        Wow. Clearly you learned about atheists from some religious bigot who has no understanding of them. Most atheists I know have a clearer understanding of the beauty and majesty of the world than any religious person I have ever met because atheists actually understand the world and the universe from a factual POV.

      • Zevon says:

        Richard Dawkins did not say that at all. You have no intention of discussing anything honestly, obviously.

        • Steven says:

          More succinctly, dawkins stated: “…no design, no purpose, no evil, no good. Nothing but blind, pitiless indifference.”

          Of course atheists can appreciate the beauty in the world and universe. Why couldn’t they? But With regards to right and wrong and issues of morality… i’m not saying atheists can’t be moral people. Some of the nicest, kindest people I know call themselves atheists. What I am saying is that from this worldview there is no objective reasoning to justify what one wants to call right or wrong. So ultimately there is no argument they can provide for what is right or wrong which isn’t simply their own belief of right and wrong. How do we contend with all the differing views of what is right and wrong? Does majority rule on these issues?

          If we are at our core the result of billions of years of evolving pondscum, then no person has any place saying what is right and wrong.

          • Mike Hind says:

            sure we do! We don’t need your book or your God to tell us right from wrong. Your logic is completely faulty and, frankly, offensive. Religious people don’t have a monopoly on morals.

      • blankman says:

        Steven – absolute nonsense. First, you don’t appear to know what an atheist is. A “theist” is someone that believes that a god or god exists. An “atheist” is someone that doesn’t believe that god exists (that’s very different from believing that god does not exist).

        You should be behaving morally because it’s the right thing to do – if the only reason you behave morally is because of a promised punishment or reward in some sort of afterlife, you aren’t very moral to begin with.

        And, if anyone gets their morals from a 2,000 year old book that promotes genocide, slavery, rape and child sacrifice, they have lost any right to comment on other people’s morality.

        =================================================

        But to quote “Penn Jillette” (of Penn & Teller):

        “The question I get asked by religious people all the time is, without God, what’s to stop me from raping all I want?

        And my answer is ‘I do rape all I want’.

        And the amount I want is zero. And I do murder all I want, and the amount I want is zero. The fact that these people think that if they didn’t have this person watching over them they would go on killing, raping rampages is the most self-damning thing I can imagine.”

      • Mike Hind says:

        This is nonsense. Nothing in this is even remotely what atheists believe.
        Why can’t you guys just get on with your lives and stop making all this stuff up to justify and rationalize your hate?

    • Torch says:

      Michael w. so much for love wins and human rights. stick to the wicket PM

  6. rumsoak says:

    you lost , go away .

  7. Toodle-oo says:

    OBA , OBA , OBA , blah blah

    And what do you have to say about the PLP’s total lack of participation , endorsement or comment on the entire issue ?

    I knew from day one that this whole thing was going to be shifted from the judiciary to the OBA

    • Sojourner says:

      Exactly. Preserve Marriage is branding their opposition as an OBA problem. A truly non partisan response to the courts decision would be to call on the Government, not the Party.

      Since they are being partisan, you again are correct in observing that they neither call on the Opposition or the PLP to take a stand.

  8. goneaway says:

    Hay PM people, you lost, suck it up.

    • Onion says:

      They didn’t lose anything. This ruling doesn’t affect them at all.

      Now they’re just trying to make sure gay couples don’t win. It’s malicious to now try to hurt gay couples when it comes at no cost to PM.

  9. Triangle Drifter says:

    If the PM crowd want an appeal they can do it on their own dime. Enough time, effort & money has been expended trying to prevent Bermuda from entering the 21st century.

  10. Frosty says:

    With each passing day they lose support. This now seems antiqued even though only a week has past. These are the forgotten people, clamering to some ancient texts to justify the power that they once had. That power is bleeding out and people are seeing them more and more as what they are. A failed charity, a failed organisation and a group of people stuck in the past. There is also the money that was once pouring in, that is now drying up as the days pass by. The greed that this money cause is insatiable and they miss it and need it back. Almost feel sorry for them….almost…

  11. aceboy says:

    PM is now a political organization? What a JOKE.

  12. Citman says:

    Totally agree. That’s the least they can do. It’s. It’s a matter of principle. Deception its best. That what I don’t like. It’s a good thing PM is educating the public if not we will all be deceived. It’s how this has happened that is the problem.

    • Mike Hind says:

      What have they educated the public about?
      All of their arguments have been shown to be false or irrelevant.

  13. Citman says:

    The red flag for me was when Gordon Pamplin says there would be no referendum – then said their would be one. Then the premier says he is for marriage to remain between and man and a woman and then does abstains from voting for the ammendment!!!!!!!! Hidden agendas!!!!!

  14. Mary says:

    moral of the story you cant pray away the gay

  15. Torch says:

    Thank you Preserve Marriage we want our country back. I stand with Preserve Marriage Bermuda.

    • Zevon says:

      So you stand against the Supreme Court of Bermuda, and against the rule of law applied equally to everyone.

      • Torch says:

        Where were you when the rule of law was 1 man 1 woman. Actually this ruling was an unprecedented legal opinion that even the higher courts disagree with. No other jurisdiction in the world did this.

        • Zevon says:

          The rule of law applies to everyone equally, and you don’t want to accept that.

        • Just the Tip says:

          Sorry but didn’t the Supreme court of the USA, their highest court rule in favor of marraige equality?

          • Torch says:

            The US Supreme Court had a panel of judges not 1 judge.

            • Just the Tip says:

              You ignored my point which is not suprising giving the type of poster you are.

              You said ” . Actually this ruling was an unprecedented legal opinion that even the higher courts disagree with. No other jurisdiction in the world did this.”

              The Supreme Court in the USA is their highest Court, how many judges sit on the court is irrelevant. What you said was incorrect.

        • blankman says:

          No other jurisdiction in the world did this? Guess you missed it when the US Supreme Court struck down all laws opposing same-sex marriage.

          And it seems that you missed the fact that any number of countries legalized same sex marriage without having to resort to the courts.

        • Onion says:

          The US did. South Africa. Probably others.

    • Mike Hind says:

      From whom? Who took your country?

  16. MPP says:

    Looks like it was the OBA’s plan all along.

    We’re on to you… and we’ll hold you accountable.

  17. Street Smart says:

    I also stand with Preserve Marriage!! The should appeal!! Without DELAY!!!

    • Disappointment says:

      PM are not able to appeal this decision. Full stop

  18. Bermuda says:

    I agree with PM on this as well, this should not be something decided by the courts especially as in the case of Bermuda where one judge decided for all. OBA you listening? You are close to losing my vote next election!

    • Makes sense says:

      But most Bermudians want this? Or are you just listening to your little group of OBA hate group . This is past due, does it really hurt your life personally if a man marries another man?
      Put yourself in that situation, what if someone told you that you couldn’t marry someone you love because of sexual orientation, race or anything?

      It’s wrong to tell people what they should or shouldn’t do, work for a better Bermuda, not one that is stuck in the past

    • blankman says:

      The courts don’t have a choice – they have to follow the law. And government has taken legal advice and were informed that they would not prevail on appeal. So why waste anyone’s time and money when you already know the outcome.

  19. stumped says:

    Election coming they will not appeal

  20. Noncents says:

    The courts have spoken. Common sense prevails over pie in the sky fairytale bible beliefs. Move on.

    • Torch says:

      The Bible was good enough to establish this country. It is good enough to sustain it.

      • sandgrownan says:

        Er no. It’s a poorly written document, penned many years after the alleged events were supposed to have taken place by several authors. it contradicts itself multiple times.

        it also talks to slavery, sexism, genocide, infanticide and goads the reader into behavior with the promise of heaven and the threat of hell.

        It’s a thoroughly despicable tome and you ought to be ashamed of yourself.

      • bluwater says:

        The Bible has not established any country. Really, get an education or stop blatantly misrepresenting.

      • Mike Hind says:

        Nope. Your religion is YOURS. It shouldn’t apply to anyone else that doesn’t want it.
        That is what religious freedom is.

    • Young observer says:

      pie in the sky? lol that is pretty funny. If we took the bible as it stands, we’d be stuck in the past. Women with no rights, People of color with no voice, but hey w.e right.

  21. Maybe, Maybe Not says:

    Preserve Marriage’s wilful misreadings of the European Court rulings are an absolute disgrace. If they were being honest about the ruling in Oliari, for instance, they’d correctly state that “prevailing community interest of its citizens” doesn’t have anything to do with seeing if the community WANTS same-sex marriage, or anything to do with holding a referendum on whether the majority want to legalize same-sex marriage. It’s about seeing if any HARM will come to the community that might outweigh what the court, in that case, called the “momentous interests” of the same-sex couple in question.

    Furthermore, when Italy weighed the community interests in that matter, it was by way of an enormous government survey, conducted on thousands of households across Italy, over the course of several months. That survey never asked if same-sex marriages should be made legal or not. Instead it contained a lengthy series of questions, answered over the course of several interviews, to fully determine Italian attitudes towards homosexuality in general. It also took great pains to make sure there was considerable input from LBGT groups throughout the process, particularly with respect to assessing how such persons had been personally affected by any anti-LGBT discrimination.

    But most importantly, at the end of the ruling in Oliari, the court affirms that the community interests paled in comparison to the “momentous” interests of the same-sex couple in question, who the court said HAVE A RIGHT UNDER THE EUROPEAN CONVENTION TO HAVE THEIR RELATIONSHIP LEGALLY RECOGNIZED BY THE STATE, WHETHER BY MARRIAGE OR THING COMPARABLE.

    So if Preserve Marriage really want to conform with European Court of Human Rights cases, then they’d better start pushing for some comparable alternative to same-sex marriage, like civil unions. Which they won’t do, of course, because as their website says, they’re against that too.

    The hypocrisy of Preserve Marriage is staggering. They have no interest in the ACTUAL rulings of the European Court, which are fully in accordance with the recent Bermuda ruling (as they well know). Instead, they cherry pick what they like and ignore what they don’t.

    • Steven says:

      You sir (or ma’am) are uninformed or purposely misleading people on the subject. Government has already received information from PM with relation to rights which could satisfy the concerns of this community. many other relationships could also benefit (elderly siblings living together, for example) from such a bundle of rights for all.

      • Maybe, Maybe Not says:

        I’m very familiar with that list, which contained about five meager individual rights that Preserve Marriage condescendingly felt could somehow replace the hundreds of rights available to married couples. That list was thoroughly dismantled in Court as woefully insufficient to meet the needs of same-sex couples and their children.

        Of course, when you say that Preserve Marriage’s list of rights could “satisfy the concerns of this community,” you clearly haven’t asked many people IN that community whether their concerns would be satisfied. It would undoubtedly satisfy the concerns of the Preserve Marriage community, though, because it represents the extent of the scraps they’re willing to grant to same-sex relationships – relationships which, as per their website, they do not want to recognize in any form, despite the European Court of Human Rights having ruled on numerous occasions that same-sex couples have a right to legal recognition of their relationships under Article 8 of the European Convention, The Right to Family Life.

      • blankman says:

        And you are willfully misinformed about the court ruling – simply trying to stitch together some sort of basket of rights wouldn’t do it – that would still be in violation of the human rights act. The ruling was about the right to get married, not to have some other sort of relationship.

      • Mike Hind says:

        What they haven’t done is offer a reason to continue this discrimination.

        That’s what they have to do now, after the ruling.

        And the “bundle of rights” you’re speaking of has a name. It’s called “Marriage”.
        And there is no reason whatsoever to deny people access to those rights.

        Or is there? Will you be offering one?

  22. Steven says:

    Fairytale? Fairytales have authors. You presumably believe in a fairytale that doesn’t even have an author. It wrote itself. Stop hiding behind the facade of science and reason. You have a worldview where everything came about by nothing. That’s as illogical, unreasonable, and unscientific a worldview as there is.

    • Torch says:

      Very good points.

    • Just the Tip says:

      LMAO

      you really love twisting reality to serve your warped religion

    • Mike Hind says:

      Nothing in here is true. “Stop hiding behind… science and reason” and then denouncing his “worldview” as “unREASONable and unSCIENTIFIC”? How does that work?

      • Steven says:

        You’re right- I should have put ‘science and reason’ in quotation marks to indicate that his position only CLAIMS science and reason, when in fact it is neither scientific or reasonable. (Things that begin to exist don’t just pop into existence without a cause)

        • Mike Hind says:

          Science understands that there IS a cause, they’re just not sure what it is.
          To claim that science’s position is that things just popped into existence is misleading and false.

          And isn’t “we know it happened, we just don’t know how, yet, but we’re looking at all the data and evidence in our effort to figure it out…” more reasonable than “God did it. There’s no evidence, no data to back this up. Just trust me. He did it.”?

  23. Citman says:

    The issue is not whether or not one is for gay marriage. It’s just wrong how people are lying about the European Convention. Either we fall under it or we don’t! And we do so don’t lie and say it’s a human right when the Court over us says it’s not. This means we are dealing with hidden agendas. No doubt.

    • Maybe, Maybe Not says:

      I’m not sure how the Convention is being lied about. There’s nothing in the Convention that says you CAN’T have same-sex marriage. In fact, Article 8, the Right to Family Life, has been confirmed by the European Court on multiple occasions as granting same-sex couples the right to have their relationships recognized by the state, via same-sex marriage or something comparable (like civil unions).

      What seems to have happened is that Preserve Marriage have been deliberately confusing people, by insinuating that the Convention says that no-one has any right to same-sex marriage AT ALL.

      It’s a strange claim they’re making, because they’re saying that the European Convention of Human Rights can somehow prevent Bermuda from creating its own human rights rights via the Bermuda Human Rights Act. Essentially Preserve Marriage are arguing that the purpose of the European Convention is to PREVENT the advancement of human rights under national law, which is the complete opposite of what the Convention actually stands for.

      The truth is, all the Convention says is that there is no right to same-sex marriage UNDER THE CONVENTION. That means if you want a right to same-sex marriage, you’ll have to find it somewhere OTHER than under the Convention.

      That’s why parties and territories under the Convention (like the UK, France, etc, and now Bermuda) end up granting same-sex marriage via local laws that go FURTHER than the minimal standard of rights granted under the Convention. And that’s perfectly fine to do, because the Convention encourages states to have national human rights regimes that go further than the Convention itself. The Convention exists to ensure that the states meet a MINIMUM human rights standard – it doesn’t prevent states from granting EXTRA rights above and beyond that.

      At any rate, the Bermuda case didn’t even rely on the Convention, so it had nothing to do with how we came to have same-sex marriage here. Preserve Marriage keep talking about the Convention because of their bizarre belief that the Convention, by not expressly granting a right to same-sex marriage, somehow BANS same-sex marriage. Which of course, it doesn’t. What self-respecting human rights act would ever ban the creation of further human rights?

    • Pastor Syl says:

      You are so right! It is very wrong how people are lying about the European Convention. Please note that PM is cherry picking and leaving out a very important point that the EC made, Namely that same sex couples have ” THE RIGHT TO HAVE THEIR RELATIONSHIP LEGALLY RECOGNIZED BY THE STATE, WHETHER BY MARRIAGE OR SOMETHING COMPARABLE,” in other words, Civil Union, which I believe PM is also against. They too need to abide by the EC

      • clearasmud says:

        You are both sort of correct. The court did say that marriage is Not a Human right. It also said that for countries that do not want to make samesex marriage legal they encourage some other alternative that would give legal certainty to these unions. They further said that they leave it to countries to decide how to deal with this issue. That said the government cannot simply ignore the will of the people by deferring to the courts.

      • Torch says:

        Government didn’t put civil unions on the table. The choice was SSM or SSCU, the legal forerunner to SSM. This gives credence to the government being intent on having SSM.

  24. LOVE WINS says:

    Any attempt to deny equality is shameful. LOVE WINS

    • Steven says:

      Whose standard of equality? What standard do you use to draw the line? Your own? Popular opinion?

      • bluwater says:

        Well, how about the legal standard?

      • sandgrownan says:

        You’re advocating for denying rights to one group, that are available to others. Ergo, you are denying them equality.

        That makes you ignorant, a bigot and a disgusting example of a poor excuse for a human being. Shame on you and shame on PM.

      • Mike Hind says:

        How about the standard we all pretty much agree on?
        Something along the lines of “If we, as society, feel that a person or group needs to be denied access to rights, it has to be done for a reason.”? For example, removing someone’s right to freedom of movement by imprisoning them, is usually done with good reason. Pretty much every time we treat people inequally, it is done for a reason.

        However, that is not the case here. Bermudians were denied access to rights and no acceptible, defensible reason was given. This was wrong and unjust and, rightly, the judge’s ruling reflected that.

        Or do you disagree with that standard?

  25. Zario says:

    I can’t understand why these people cannot mind their own business. If they don’t want to marry someone of the same sex, then that is their own choice. But why should they stop someone else. If they don’t get married, they will still live together. If one of the partners gets sick, etc and need someone to act as next of kin then the person who they love should be able to act.
    It’s nobody else’s business what people do in their own home, if they are not bothering anyone else. Providing it’s legal of course.

    • Steven says:

      Slogans like love wins and “people should be free to love who they want” are clever but are ultimately just straw man arguments. Nobody cares what relationships people have or who they love. What is of concern is what is best for society and redefining marriage to just be about whatever people want it to be misses the value of what marriage has provided to societies. Marriage was exclusively designed for a man and a woman for a purpose. moving further away from that is of no social benefit.

      • Kevin says:

        Since when did religion become the judge and jury what a joke . Its what you are wanting stop blaming it on a belief that can’t be proven , its words translated how many times and by individuals who probably interpreted what they wanted it to say …..you bible pushers nobody is telling what you can and cannot do …believe in what you want to and the rest of the world will do the same …you have no right to push your beliefs on anyone else you don’t even follow the rules in the book you so live your life by simply otherwise known as hypocrites

        • Daylily says:

          Actually the countries influenced by Christian principles have been the most open to SSM. Countries primarily opposed like in Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa do so for social and cultural reasons.

      • Cow Polly says:

        I call bull on that one. Who says marriage was exclusively designed for a man and a woman? And being inclusive of minorities only strengthens communities and therefore of a huge social benefit. Take ya blinkers off Steven

      • blankman says:

        Nonsense – even the biblical definition of marriage goes far beyond one man and one woman. It includes:

        - one man/one wife
        - one man/one wife, many concubines
        - one man/many wives, many concubines (Solomon had 300 wives, 700 concubines)
        - a soldier and his female prisoners of war
        - a rapist and his victim
        - a man and the female slaves he purchased

        And then there’s the Catholic and Orthodox churches – both had same sex marriage liturgies on the books for centuries.

      • Mike Hind says:

        “Nobody cares what relationships people have…”

        Um. This is ALL Preserve Marriage cares about.

        And who designed marriage?

        Oh, as for social benefit? Stable, committed relationships, supported by legal rights ARE a social benefit.

  26. Lois Frederick says:

    Equality is a wonderful thing for all. Get used to it PM.

  27. Citman says:

    Lots of people in PM are not even in church. Wake up and realize you can’t use your bully tactics to say this is just a church group. Not true it your teachers, govt workers and all in the community.

    • Mike Hind says:

      Then why do they keep using religion as an reason to continue this discrimination?
      They’ve never offered any realistic arguments and always fall back on their religion.

      It’s not a bully tactic to refer to a group based on their actions.

      It IS a bully tactic to pressure the Government and our society to deny people equal access to rights.

  28. Beck says:

    Oh please, these people need to realize SSM has ZERO impact on anyone. Anyone who claims it impacts them, it actually doesn’t, they just chose to say it does. Legalize it and move on people.

  29. Unbelievable says:

    Seems like the PLP put the Preserve Marriage group up to this statement. Good political strategy.

    Too bad you’re all on the wrong side of history. In 20 years your children and grandchildren will be shaking their heads at you.

  30. Onion says:

    Why is PM so concerned about what other people do with their lives?

  31. puzzled says:

    Quo Fata Ferunt.

    Two f’s and a “q”.
    Go figure.

    Let it go folks and move on.
    We did it for so many years

  32. I believe we should hold any Government to account for such untruthfulness. Just happens to be OBA at the helm now.

    I add my voice to the calls above that the government Appeal this ruling.

    I stand with Preserve Marriage.

    Signed
    Registered Voter

    • Just the Tip says:

      Please explain to me what they were untruthful about?? Use your own words and not the “well just read the article”

    • Mike Hind says:

      What untruthfulness?
      The only ones being dishonest around here are PM.

  33. Janice says:

    The above all sounds like Mr Burt and Co electioneering the religious wing of the PLP religion and politics so close bedfellows scarey stuff all done in the name of God

    • LOVE WINS says:

      Religions are protected under law…. yet many religions would try and deny others their rights and their access to equality.
      That indeed is evil. Where is the love when they would attempt to impose their religious views on others?
      The COURT has protected a segment of society from the ravages of hell bent religious loonies.
      Hallelujah.
      #lovewins

  34. Long bay trading says:

    PM there is nothing stopping YOU bunch from lodging an Appeal. For heavens sake just go and do it. In the meantime the rest of us will carry on life as normal and live and let live.

    • Maybe, Maybe Not says:

      No, they can’t appeal. They weren’t parties to the case. Both the Human Rights Commission and Preserve Marriage were interveners, not parties, so they only had leave to give submissions that might assist the Court but had no standing to pursue an appeal.

      • LOVE WINS says:

        That is absolutely correct.
        PM a charity no less, that would attempt to deny others their rights to equality. That is a farce.
        Are they struck off yet ?
        #lovewins

  35. bluwater says:

    I think PM should provide a statement that accounts for all the charitable funds they have received and how it’s been spent.

  36. spider says:

    First of all GOD is an imaginary friend period.
    No child is born believing in GOD they have to be taught to ignore the insignificance of the human condition in the vastness of the universe and believe that they are the center of a universe of a scale which unfortunately is not taught very well in schools. Anybody who studies astrology can quickly see how absurd it is to believe that the humans on this small planet within the milky way galaxy consisting of billions of stars and there are billions of galaxies but somehow humans here figured out all the unknown stuff of the billions of galaxies with billions of stars.
    Just absurd
    F

    • Steven says:

      First off I think you meant ASTRONOMY not astrology. Secondly, if you believe that everything in the known universe came about by nothing, you sir (or ma’am) have more ‘faith’ than any religious person I know. You’re willing to believe in the fairy tale of nothing resulting in everything. That’s about as childlike a perspective of the universe as there is. Please tell me what’s scientific about that. Oh right. If we just theorize billions and billions of years, that magically makes it all possible. So basically everything we know of just popped into existence without a cause? While you’re referring to the topics of reason and logic, can you please explain where those come from?
      If reason and logic are simply byproducts of evolution, an unguided ungoverned process, then we are just matter in motion. And therefore your mind is simply a molecular machine and should not be trusted. After all, what’s going on in your brain is just chemicals fizzing.

  37. Know it All says:

    “Preserve Marriage is a very diverse group of persons of all colors, socio-economic status, persons of faith and non-faith. Preserve Marriage is not affiliated with the OBA or PLP”

    By diverse, seems you decided to discriminate against the LGBT community it seems…anyone from the LGBT been invited to join?

    Seems like a whole basket of hypocrites that you would work so hard to restrict the rights of a fellow human being, considering you say you have people from diverse backgrounds that have probably experienced discrimination themselves. Doesn’t impact your way of life one bit, just like how a white person and black person can marry, or a Bermudian and a Filipino, or someone twice their age, or any combination of that!

    And don’t bore me with some garbage “the Bible says so”… fortunately we live in a country that isn’t driven by that, otherwise most of the population would be locked up for having children out of wedlock, cheating and divorce.

    Let’s focus on real tangible stuff, like how to stop the carnage on the roads rather that cry me a river statement.

    • Daylily says:

      You know some gay people are against SSM. To afraid to tell other LGBT people because they don’t want to be ostracized.

      • Mike Hind says:

        And? Some straight people are against marriage, too. Should we listen to them?

        You’re reaching again.

        (And it’s just called “marriage” now. There’s no need for the “SS” in front of it.)

  38. wondering says:

    People stop trying to make God do your will. In last days men will become lovers of men…….so if the good book has the prophecy written why on earth are you hell bent on trying to make it reverse itself.

    Pretty pompous of you P.M.

  39. Bdarock says:

    I’m at a loss to understand how PM thinks this affects them or their families . Gay couples who would apply to marry are likely already living together as a couple anyway . Legal marriage only affects matters of law such as inheritance etc . It’s really amazing that PM are trying so hard to invent a problem where there isn’t one .

    • blankman says:

      The only way that this ruling is going to affect their marriage is if one of them is gay.

      After all, no-one is insisting that they marry someone of the same sex or refusing to allow them to marry someone of the opposite sex.

  40. Hannah says:

    I stand with Winston and Greg! I stand with equality for all Bermudians, residents and visitors who wish to marry on our beautiful island and reap the benefits owed to them as a married couple. Love is love. I want to live in a culture of love.

  41. Citman says:

    Right is right and wrong is wrong. To say as the AG of the country that no one will challenge the courts because marriage is secure and to then turn around and be the lawyer that brings the case against what you said can’t be done!!!!! You think this is right!!! GIVE ME A BREAK!!!! You can be blind if you want to – not me and the non-biased wools of this country. I see it for what it is. A crafty plan all along!!! And then to hide it under the word equality. Shameful. Even the liberal European Court does not agree with you.

  42. Citman says:

    PM should appeal it. Why not? The Govt has not led this issue at all. At least they are giving us the truth. It’s documented and cited as true. It’s not a human right and the Convention applies to our Act. They ruled it’s not a human right so let’s stop saying it is and just be truthful.

    • Just the Tip says:

      No they shouldn’t and why? this is why:

      “Please note that PM is cherry picking and leaving out a very important point that the EC made, Namely that same sex couples have ” THE RIGHT TO HAVE THEIR RELATIONSHIP LEGALLY RECOGNIZED BY THE STATE, WHETHER BY MARRIAGE OR SOMETHING COMPARABLE,” in other words, Civil Union, which I believe PM is also against. They too need to abide by the EC”

    • blankman says:

      PM can’t appeal – they weren’t a party to the original suit.

      On this one, the Human Rights Act is supreme and it says that SSM is a human right – it is not overruled by the Convention.

    • Mike Hind says:

      Why not? Because the law is discriminatory.

  43. Bermudian girl says:

    Wow, what a lot of little minds we have in here this morning. I am not gay but am happy for the LGBT community. Maybe you tiny minds in here would also like to change the Loving Law. You all are just sad

  44. Uranus says:

    We must respect preserve marriages right to be bigoted and prejudicial as we honour free speech and equality in everything – they are indeed entitled to be complete a***** in defeat!

    • blankman says:

      True – they have the right to believe whatever they want, as bigoted and prejudicial as it may be.

      However, they do not have the right to impose those beliefs on everyone else.

  45. King Jammys says:

    PM is a hate group

    • Mary says:

      more like a dangerous cult who will they hate on next now they cant cherry pick the Gay thing out of the Bible?
      suggestion.. a campaign against Lobster Eaters
      but reality check….. best to give the money to the homeless it would be more GOdly

  46. Joe Bloggs says:

    First PM says “Preserve Marriage is a very diverse group of persons of all colors, socio-economic status, persons of faith and non-faith. Preserve Marriage is not affiliated with the OBA or PLP”

    And then PM goes on to say “Preserve Marriage does not agree with the decision of the OBA Government not to appeal the same-sex marriage ruling. We wish to make it clear that the OBA Government cannot free itself from responsibility for the introduction of same-sex marriage in Bermuda …”

    In my view, if PM were really non-partisan they would use the phrase “Bermuda Government”, not “the OBA Government”

    It might also be worth noting that it is the duty of the Government, no matter its socio-economic base, to protect those who are discriminated against. Gay people in Bermuda are undoubtedly discriminated against in forming unions recognised by the law

  47. Amy says:

    If you are against discrimination in one form you should be against it in all forms. The hypocrisy of so many is maddening. PM your views are archaic.

  48. Starting Point says:

    Does PM want a review of the laws that allow people to get divorced or penalties to people who have children out of wedlock?

    PM constantly say their objection is not a religious one (it is FYI) and that their objection is that children should be raised in a male and female marriage. Yet they are found to be lying to the public (a sin I thought?) as they seem to have no objection to single parents and divorced couples?

    If PM showed some consistency and called for laws outlawing single parents and divorce then we could take them seriously, outside of that they are just another religious group trying to force their religion on the rest of us from other religions or no religion at all. I suppose their next step will be laws to force women into silence unless given permission by a man to talk as the bible tells us.

  49. Francis says:

    Let’s correct some so called facts:
    First: OBA was not the group the introduced “two words and a comma”. That was the mantra of a same sex pressure group many years before the OBA was formed. OBA has never used that mantra.

    Second: The Bermuda Bred case indicated that the same sex couples should not be discriminated against and immigration policy provides for a “partner” based on UK definitions. Nothing in immigration policy says anything about same sex relationships – people that can prove they are in a stable and long term relationship get certain rights.

    Third: The government accepted the legal necessity for a referendum. The government did not tell anyone how to vote – there were no government statements on how people should vote. The referendum act passed by the PLP makes it clear that referendums are non-binding. Parliament is supreme in the Westminster system. The legal threshold for a referendum result to be considered was not met.

    Fourth: The only OBA senator who said the same sex marraiage was a human right was Senator Baron. Other senators voted down the Furbert Bill for other reasons.

    Fifth: The Human Rights Commission is independent of Government. The Government cannot simply tell the HRC what to do.

    Sixth: Many OBA people agree that MP Pettingill was conflicted in representing the same sex couple based on advice he gave to the Government. There has been suspicions he knowingly gave bad advice so he could push his own agenda.

    Lastly – the Human Rights Act has supremacy. Bring a bill to change the law!

  50. Disappointment says:

    PM, you intervened in the legal proceedings, you are against same sex marriage and now you are making this political. What precisely are you/do you do?

    You are not a charity that does good, you are not preserving marriage as if you were doing as your name suggests then you would be out in the community helping couples and families that are struggling and on the road to divorce. You would actually embrace what has happened.

    You can of course be disappointed but now it is time to move on to other things that you want to prevent. Why not try to prevent divorce, infidelity, spousal abuse and the impacts that has on families and this society.

    If not then shut your doors and please let the rest of the world get on with life.

  51. Roland J says:

    Bermuda will now face Gods judgements like Sodom and Gamorrah.

    • Mike Hind says:

      That’s fine with me.

      Let Him show His displeasure. You stay out of it.

    • Mike Hind says:

      You do realize that it being against your religion means that YOU can’t do it, not that other people can’t, right?

  52. Ra's al Ghul says:

    The acronym for the opposition is getting ridiculously long. Can you please condense PLP/UBP/BIU/PC/PM into something more manageable?

  53. clearasmud says:

    The Judges ruling appears to ignore the ruling of the European Court of Human rights so I wonder 1/ is this legal and 2/how this might affect future cases taken before that court.It appears to me that the government is attempting to stay on the fence on this issue which I believe is due to the impending election. Further i don’t agree that PM are trying to deny persons “rights” that they enjoy because at the moment everyone has a right to marry members of the opposite sex and no one has a right to marry a member of the same sex. That makes us even. Further I believe that the judge could have found for discrimination on gender basis as opposed to sexual orientation since these two terms are not equal.We know that we can not trust the politicians to do the right thing because if they had wanted to they could have moved forward with the civil union legislation but they did not. Clearly they wanted someone else to make the decision for them so they can distance themselves for the decision.

  54. ImJustSayin says:

    Overall, the evidence suggests that letting same-sex couples marry would be good public policy. Same-sex couples and their families will benefit, and the institution of marriage does not suffer. Gay couples’ interest in marriage is a vote in favor of the ongoing relevance of marriage in today’s world, a change that should strengthen, not weaken, the institution.”

    Mar. 22, 2011 - M.V. Lee Badgett, P

  55. ImJustSayin says:

    “I am a Christian, and I am in favor of gay marriage. The reason I am for gay marriage is because of my faith.

    What I see in the Bible’s accounts of Jesus and his followers is an insistence that we don’t have the moral authority to deny others the blessing of holy institutions like baptism, communion, and marriage. God, through the Holy Spirit, infuses those moments with life, and it is not ours to either give or deny to others…

    It is not our place, it seems, to sort out who should be denied a bond with God and the Holy Spirit of the kind that we find through baptism, communion, and marriage. The water will flow where it will.

    Intriguingly, this rule will apply whether we see homosexuality as a sin or not. The water is for all of us. We see the same thing at the Last Supper, as Jesus gives the bread and wine to all who are there—even to Peter, who Jesus said would deny him, and to Judas, who would betray him.

    The question before us now is not whether homosexuality is a sin, but whether being gay should be a bar to baptism or communion or marriage.

    The answer is in the Bible. Peter and Jesus offer a strikingly inclusive form of love and engagement. They hold out the symbols of Gods’ love to all. How arrogant that we think it is ours to parse out stingily!”

    May 19, 2012 - Mark Osler, JD

  56. ImJustSayin says:

    The other illogical pro Prop.8 argument is that same-gender marriage threatens traditional, biblically based marriage. This may be the greatest red herring that is readily assumed as normative.

    There is no such thing as traditional, biblically based marriage – at least in the Western hemisphere. I know of no heterosexual couple living that has a marriage that is remotely similar to what is found within the Bible. Biblical marriage viewed women as property; based almost exclusively on procreation.

    Thus, those who wish to oppose same-gender marriage on a biblical basis must do so by advocating for their private view of morality as the best way for society, using a stagnant definition of marriage that never existed in a world that is constantly evolving…

  57. ImJustSayin says:

    “Research has shown that marriage provides substantial psychological and physical health benefits due to the moral, economic and social support extended to married couples. Conversely, recent empirical evidence has illustrated the harmful psychological effect of policies restricting marriage rights for same-sex couples. Additionally, children raised by same-sex couples have been shown to be on par with the children of opposite-sex couples in their psychological adjustment, cognitive abilities and social functioning.”

    Aug. 11, 2010 - American Psychological Association

  58. Sara says:

    Perhaps Preserve Marriage would be better served speaking out against adultery and children born out of wedlock as this is a big issue in Bermuda but we don’t here anything from them on it. Care to explain why??

  59. Mike Hind says:

    The good side is that now that the law has changed – and thank goodness that it has! – Preserve Marriage now needs to provide an argument to change it back.
    They haven’t done this so far, which leads me to believe that they don’t actually have one.
    I stand to be corrected, if anyone wants to offer one they’d be willing to discuss and answer questions about.

  60. Honestly says:

    Let me educate you on equality! It simple means all humans are treated equally! SSM should’ve never been allowed in Bermuda. This OBA needs to stop and think about they are doing to our children’s children. Cut the nonsense aka ignorance.

    • Mike Hind says:

      How are you educating ANYONE on equality when you start with something correct, “All humans are treated equally” and then go on to say that a certain group of them – for absolutely no reason – should NOT be treated equally with “SSM should’ve never been allowed in Bermuda”?

      These are contradictory statements.
      The only ignorance around here is yours.

    • bdaboy says:

      “Let me educate you on equality! It simple means all humans are treated equally! SSM should’ve never been allowed in Bermuda.”

      read the crap you spewed, you contradict yourself. You can’t educate anyone on anything, you don’t have a clue.
      Go away, bigot.

  61. FUI says:

    PM you lot need to look in the mirror real hard and get your skeletons OUT of the closet. By the way you also DO NOT SPEAK NOR THINK for ME

  62. Janice says:

    An investigation should commence on how the gay members of preserve marraige got to be straight the New England journal of medicine needs that report

  63. Mike Hind says:

    And here we have it again. The anti-equality folks pop in, post a bunch of false nonsense and then run away.

    I have to ask again:

    If your position is so strong, why do you have to resort to dishonesty and cowardice to defend it?

  64. YaBoy says:

    God I feel sorry for all the kids of single mothers or single fathers, they’ve only got a male role model or a female role model. Just like children of gay marriage. We should remove the children of single parents and transfer them to orphanages and foster care until the parent marries.

    That would be a perfect solution, wouldn’t it?

    IF YOU AGREE WITH PRESERVE MARRIAGE THEN YOU ALSO AGREE WITH THIS.

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