PM “Pleased” Govt Plan To Appeal SSM Ruling

June 7, 2018

Preserve Marriage said they are “pleased that the Government, subject to legal advice has already announced its plan to appeal” the Court decision on same sex marriage, with the group saying “it is astonishing to see that the Chief Justice has made a decision in contradiction to Bermuda’s democratic process.”

Court Rules For Second Time

This follows after Chief Justice Dr Ian Kawaley ruled in favour of same sex marriage yesterday, with the judgement saying that the provisions of the Domestic Partnership Act that serve to revoke same sex marriage rights are invalid.

Same sex marriage was initially legalised in Bermuda following a Supreme Court decision in May 2017, however the Domestic Partnership Act  passed in Bermuda’s legislature last year which created domestic partnerships and restricted marriage as between a man and woman, with the DPA taking effect on June 1st of this year.

Yesterday’s ruling was the second court ruling in favour of same sex marriage, meaning Bermuda has legalized same sex marriage, then restricted it, then had a court ruling to make it legal again, and the matter is not yet settled, as the Court granted a six week stay to allow time for appeal, and the Government confirmed they “will be appealing subject to any legal advice that we receive.”

The court judgment [PDF] stated, “Bermuda’s Constitution is a secular one designed to require the State to give maximum protection for freedom of conscience.

“It only permits interference with such freedoms in the public interest for rational and secular grounds which are permitted by the Constitution. The present decision vindicates the principle that Parliament cannot impose the religious preferences of any one group on the society as a whole through legislation of general application.”

Preserve Marriage Mentioned In Court Judgment

Preserve Marriage has been campaigning against same sex marriage and was mentioned in the judgement, which said, “Prior to the decision, an organization supported by several churches was formed to campaign against same sex marriage rights [Preserve Marriage Bermuda [PMB].”

The judgment also stated, “The suggestion that legal recognition of marriage can be wholly detached from the religious or secular concept of marriage for the purposes of this analysis is simply untenable. PMB’s campaign to preserve marriage to conform to their religious beliefs was not merely about preserving the autonomy of churches, which was never seriously in doubt.

“It was primarily about seeking to persuade the State to not extend legal protection to marriages which contravened PMB’s beliefs.

“Just as PMB and its members genuinely believe that same-sex marriages should not be legally recognised, the Applicants and many others equally sincerely hold opposing beliefs. It is not for secular institutions of Government, without constitutionally valid justification, to direct the way in which a citizen manifests their beliefs.”

Preserve Marriage’s Statement

A spokesperson said, “Preserve Marriage and Family is pleased that the Government, subject to legal advice has already announced its plan to appeal the decision by Chief Justice Ian Kawaley, which would reinstitute same-sex marriage.

“We fully support Minister Walton Brown, Minister of Home Affairs and the Government in efforts to ensure that this decision is challenged and appealed during the six week stay of implementation.

“It is astonishing to see that the Chief Justice has made a decision in contradiction to Bermuda’s democratic process. Two-thirds of the voting population and both Houses of Parliament decided against same-sex marriage.

“Additionally, repeated rulings by the European Court of Human Rights [ECHR] as well as the most recent ruling by the European Court of Justice has reiterated that same-sex marriage is not a human right, nor is it mandated by member states.

“Furthermore, the ECHR warned that the definition of marriage is so fundamental to culture that this matter should not be decided by the judiciary but rather by the legislature, that is best suited to determine this issue.

“This single decision, in our opinion usurps the legislative authority of the Government, the democratic process and goes beyond the mandate of the European Courts. Again, we support the Government in its plan to challenge yesterday’s ruling and will await the decision of an appeal to the Higher Courts.

“In the meantime, Preserve Marriage and Family has been busily engaged in developing plans to support marriages and family life in Bermuda.

“We recognize that there are many serious issues surrounding marriages and families. We acknowledge that existing marriages, single parents and blended families all need support.

“We will be sharing some of our plans with the public shortly,” the statement added.

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Comments (63)

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  1. Jay_O says:

    Excellent. I support PM wholeheartedly.

    • Mark says:


    • Truth says:

      If you support them, then you obviously believe in segregation, instead of colour, it’s now sexual oriantaion, whats Next? what religion you are, people make there own choices, we may not agree with them but it’s not our right to stop them

      • sage says:

        I choose to smoke ganja, this government and the majority of people gladly support segregation and discrimination when a substance is deemed ‘illegal’, like sodomy was pre 94′, despite there being no sound reason for it. My only legal option would be to smoke cigarettes, a substance which causes millions of deaths , herb has killed no one. Prohibition of cannabis is unconstitutional, but no-one cares, not enough money for lawyers to be crusaders for pot heads. Where is the ‘love’ every one has for SSM when it came to the woman suffering from seizures who was imprisoned for an unjust law? Not a peep. Time to de-schedule and remove all penalties. Love is still losing.

        • Smokedawg says:

          Yup exactly!!

        • im so done with yall says:

          like i agree with weed being decriminalized, especially for medicinal purposes, but there is a HUGE difference between going to jail for being gay and going to jail for possessing weed. First of all, it’s a choice to smoke weed and/or buy it, while people don’t choose to be gay. Two completely different issues and it’s kinda daft of you to compare the two. but you do you…i guess.

          • sage says:

            like gays are not jailed, sick people who choose to use something that works for them are. People who drink liquor aren’t jailed (for possession) and denied employment but those who enjoy a far safer alternative are. As far as people not choosing to be gay, are you saying someone can’t change their sexual preference? Not fully convinced of the ‘born gay’ theory. Either way marriage is a choice and the topic is ssm not homosexuality so…

            • Toodle-oo says:

              ~ Either way marriage is a choice and the topic is ssm not homosexuality so… ~

              Then why are you doing your usual stunt interjecting about your favorite subject ‘herb’ ?

              You didn’t have much to say the other day on the article ‘elsewhere’ written by an expert who debunked your constant whining that it’s never hurt anyone.

            • Mike Hind says:

              Gays are not jailed because they organized and fought to stop that happening. They used to be. Within living memory.

              As has been suggested many, many times, to you personally, why don’t you do the same?

              It works.

        • Mike Hind says:

          Here we go again, and again, I ask:

          Have you organized like pro marriage equality folks have?
          What organization have you formed, what messaging have you put out to promote your cause?

          None. Because you just want to complain about gay folks getting equality.

          It’s an easy excuse.

          You don’t want to do the work. You just want to complain about how hard you have it.

          Grow up.

        • God'sTruth says:

          Couldn’t have said it better!!! 100

    • Pro GO says:

      Pathetic I DO NOT and NEVER WILL support a bunch of anti constitutional 2 faced BIGOTS.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      The constitution doesn’t though. So PM can’t argue that this judgement usurps the authority of the legislature, when the judgement merely upholds the constitutional democratic values upon which the legislature derives their power, and are responsible for upholding. And when they fail to uphold the constitution, then it falls to the courts to correct… this is the balance upon which democracy exists.

      Democracy doesn’t exist as majority will, if first and foremost all are not given legal equality under which they can be governed… without those constitutional protections of legal equality, majority will rule isn’t democracy, but in fact totalitarianism.

      • What?? says:

        Well said. Why is it so difficult for people to understand that protection for individual rights is absolutely essential for democracy. You can not have the latter without the former.

    • Mike Hind says:

      Why? Their position is against the law…

      “…Parliament cannot impose the religious preferences of any one group on the society as a whole through legislation of general application.”

      They have never offered a reason to deny people equal access to rights provided by marriage and have, in fact, been exposed as backed by a foreign group, NOM.

  2. Noncents says:

    Can we please move on to more important issues rather than waste more tax payer money??

  3. Joe Bloggs says:

    “Preserve Marriage said they are “pleased that the Government, subject to legal advice has already announced its plan to appeal” the Court decision on same sex marriage, with the group saying “it is astonishing to see that the Chief Justice has made a decision in contradiction to Bermuda’s democratic process.””

    I do hope that Preserve Marriage is going to pay the Government’s costs of appealing!

    As for contradicting Bermuda’s democratic process, I would have thought that upholding Bermuda’s Constitution against measures designed to target a segment of the community with punitive measures would amount to upholding the best traditions of democratic society. That is unless Preserve Marriage means that the majority can act toward a minority in any way they wish with impunity. If that is what it means then the laws repealing slavery were wrongly abolished!

    • What?? says:

      True. It would also mean that a governing party would have the ‘democratic’ right to suppress all opposition.

  4. alistair maclean says:

    Two-thirds of the voting population and both Houses of Parliament decided against same-sex marriage.
    Is not true.
    it was two thirds of those who voted in a non binding referendum that failed to count because less than 50 percent of the population voted.

    • Now What says:

      Spot on.

    • Jus' Askin' says:

      let us unpack this ~
      •all those that care either way,voted
      •the numbers for, minority
      •the numbers against, majority


      Thank You Mike Hind for the tip ;-)

      • Toodle-oo says:

        Lets finish the unpacking .
        14,000 out of 44,000 voters participated , so it is in no way true that the ‘majority’ are against it.

        You want another referendum ? Fine , just make sure it’s only valid if 95% of the electorate participate .

        • Jus' Askin' says:

          14,000 out of 44,000 voters participated
          •all those that care (14,000) either way (for or against),Voted ;-)

          •the numbers (that voted) for, minority

          •the numbers (that voted) against, majority

          95% :-D :-D :-D

          • Toodle-oo says:

            You’re obviously never going to get it and your silly insertion of smileys only makes it worse.
            We know that people like you who are very , very anti were trucked to the polling stations by the bus load so you could make your point.
            I strongly doubt that if the remaining 30,000 voters who were too nonplussed by the whole thing to bother voting DID show up you might be disappointed by the outcome .
            You know , that whole ‘empty vessels’ thing ?

          • Mike Hind says:

            Let’s not only finish the unpacking, but put the clothes away and stow the luggage in the closet…

            It was nonbinding and unanswered and thus using the results as any sort of indicator of anything is wrong. That’s literally what those words mean.

            Oh, wait. You don’t care. You have an agenda of discrimination to push, so anything that even looks like it backs you up is fair game, even if it’s false as heck.
            Kinda like when you said “It’s not about religion, it’s just unnatural…” and then ran away when it was pointed out that you were wrong… or when you said you’d answer questions, then disappeared from THAT conversation.

            What’s sad is that you don’t even see that you’re being used by a foreign hate group…

            Unless you actually ARE part of that foreign hate group… Hmm… that’s something to think about.

            Spouting unBermudian things… doesn’t understand how our laws work… hmmmm

      • Mike Hind says:

        More nonsense from you.
        It has been explained to you, repeatedly, that this is not how it works.

        Any proposal you put forth against Marriage Equality – unless you offer a valid, non-religious reason for it, which you can’t because there is none… if there was, you would have offered it by now… we’ll, not YOU, but someone sane – is against the law and thus will be shot down.
        It’s happened twice now. It has been shown that you and people that think like you are wrong. Completely wrong.

        Don’t blame me for your ridiculous, illegal ideas.

  5. alistair maclean says:

    Two-thirds of the voting population and both Houses of Parliament decided against same-sex marriage.
    Is not true.

    It is two thirds of people who voted in a non binding referendum that was declared null because less than 50 percent of the voting population actually cast a vote

    • Jus' Askin' says:

      let us unpack this ~
      •all those that care either way,voted
      •the numbers for, minority
      •the numbers against, majority


      Thank You Mike Hind for the tip ;-)

      • Mike Hind says:

        Joseph Goebbels: “If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth.”

  6. Hey says:

    Nobody is telling you you can’t believe that marriage should only be between a man and a woman. Those are your beliefs. You just cannot force other people to believe the same thing as you, and you cannot force people that have different beliefs to you to have less rights than you,

    • whoops says:

      This. So much of this. You can’t pick and choose which parts of your religion you want to expect of other people. People should be able to believe and follow whatever they want in peace.

  7. wahoo says:

    “Preserve Marriage and Family is pleased that the Government, subject to legal advice has already announced its plan to appeal the decision by Chief Justice Ian Kawaley, which would reinstitute same-sex marriage.

    Who is “and family”? CURB? I am tired of this bunch of hypocrites and their selective moral battles. Leave people TF alone and do not tell them what they can and cannot do. If you live your life that way you will get much more enjoyment out of it.

    Monetarily we should be spending tax payer money on more pressing issues like servicing our astronomical debt (thanks plp).

    • Jay_O says:

      We are all selective regarding the issues we feel conviction enough to speak up about. For example, i’m sure you’re selective about which things you respond to by posting on here.

      Furthermore, PM believes that marriage is the foundation of our society and as we have seen persons not upholding the traditional definition and marriage vow, our society has suffered. So no- this isn’t just about a marriage paper. It’s about so much more than that for many people who understand the significance of what strong marriages have meant for our society. If we had stronger marriages, we would not have near as many social ills that we have today.

      • Toodle-oo says:

        ~If we had stronger marriages, we would not have near as many social ills that we have today.~

        Maybe if we had actually more “marriages” we wouldn’t have the social ills that we do . Get what I’m saying ?
        Lets see you and PM have the ba@@s to address that issue !

      • Family Man says:

        Pastor Gary supports PM and ‘family’.

        • Hey says:

          What family friendly programs have you introduced with the donations received. I have a misguided friend who donated, but when I ask him, where did the money go, he has no idea. Preserve marriage Needs to declare what the money has been spent on for the islands families. Transparency please.

      • rene says:

        How has society suffered,you say it is suffering because of non traditional marriage in spite of the fact that there havent been any non traditional marriages. Non traditional marriages cant be the cause of society suffering as there have only been a few. What complete nonsense you are saying.

      • Mike Hind says:

        This is absolute nonsense.

        Preserve Marriage is SOLELY about stopping Marriage Equality.
        This has nothing to do with strong marriages. If it was, they’d support more loving couples getting married.

        They are backed and guided by an anti-LGBT group, NOM.

        And not ONCE have they offered a valid, legal reason for their support of denying people equal access to rights. Not once.

        They’ve lied, they’ve misrepresented themselves and the truth, they’ve made completely spurious claims, over and over again.

        Your claim of Preserve Marriage’s goals is completely untrue.

        • Jus' Askin' says:

          more Heterophobic posts :-(

          • Mike Hind says:

            Name one instance where I spoke against heterosexuality.

            You can’t. Because I didn’t.

            You are spreading lies in your desperation.

            You know you are wrong – it’s been exposed many, many times – and now you are desperately trying to defame me with this ridiculous “heterophobia” gibberish.


            • Jus' Askin' says:

              If You’re not for, You are Against ;-) ;-)

              • Mike Hind says:

                I’m all for heterosexuality.

                I’m just not for supremacy, like you are.

                I believe there’s room for all human sexualities (And no, paedophilia isn’t a sexuality, nor is incest, before someone pipes in with those tired attempts at an argument). You just think there’s only room for yours.

                That’s why you’re wrong. As usual.

              • Mike Hind says:

                I also noticed that you didn’t answer my question on the other thread, as you agreed to do. Why is that?

  8. Hey says:

    “Two-thirds of the voting population decided against same-sex marriage”

    Now that is a bold faced lie Preserve Marriage. Shame on you and your lies. What other lies do you propagate…….

  9. Ministry of people who don't have a clue says:

    Good job government for once again showing us your influenced by church and the ignorant people of this beautiful nation. How can we keep going backwards in this society. People make there own life choices and we should respect that. All government is doing is stirring up hateful feelings with the public and foreign visitors. They are promoting segregation via this appeal. We dont need any more hate and strife between the people of bermuda. This said I think it’s time that these old parties desolve and we get some new forward thinking people running our country. Food for thought it’s the same as a christian person saying that Muslim shouldn’t be allowed to worship here because they don’t agree with their beliefs. Sexual orientation is choice! what makes us allowed to dictate that choice to others

    • Toodle-oo says:

      ~Sexual orientation is choice! ~

      So , tell us how old you were when you made the choice to be hetero ?

      We’re all patiently waiting .

  10. Mark says:

    More nonsense from old bigots. Thank god for human rights.

  11. puzzled says:

    Bermuda is another world, turn around and you will see
    - nothing but hippocrap-cy.

    Hurricane Colonel will be your demise; Irony………..

  12. Chris Nelson says:

    How typically Christian of them. ‘Religion Poisons Everything’. Hitchens.

  13. spider says:

    One can only hope that PM has to foot the bill for their spoiled child behaviour.

  14. Read your Bible says:

    The problem with a lot of so called church folk in Bermuda it all goes wrong when they actually think they are GOD and better than everyone else and the Bible goes out the window . Ps did the the two male preserve marraige pastors ever get married?

  15. Build a Better Bermuda says:

    For how many years has PM existed now, that they are only now trying to come up with some idea on how to help struggling families/marriage…

  16. Athena says:

    Since this is opposed by Preserve Marriage et al the tax payer should not be having to foot their bill.

    Secondly, if this group is so hot about the sanctity of marriage why are they not putting a heck of a lot more energy into sounding off about the infidelity of husbands/wives which runs quite rampant?

    From my observations that seems to be a far more serious problem that they should be focusing on.

    • Switch says:

      You are absolutely correct! They should be placing an emphasis there. My ex wife went completely off her head sleeping around behind my back only to take away my home, car and kids. I was left devastated by a Christian woman who went sex crazy! Now I struggle to make ends meet and where is the Church in this? She goes to church every week and pays money to the church to repent her sins and is forgiven. Where is the Justice in that? Churches are full of crap and should stay out of politics or pay taxes!

  17. facts of the rock says:

    PM.,the plp,biu,curb are all in bed with one another!
    (no pun intended,but if the shoe fits!).

  18. Jus' Askin' says:

    •Racial Equality
    •Gender Equality
    •Salary/Wages Equality
    •Education Equality
    •Health Care Equality

    SSM feel free to pick a number and have a seat until YOUR number is called :-D


    • Anbu says:

      They dont have to smartass, they just won. Now u take a number and sit quietly. Thanx

      • Jus' Askin' says:

        Courts Decided, Let the People Decide


        • Mike Hind says:

          Before you can call for it, yer gonna have to take off the hood.
          I doubt you’ll do that, though…

          And the people DID decide. We agreed on a set of rules that protect us all.

          one of those rules is ““…Parliament cannot impose the religious preferences of any one group on the society as a whole through legislation of general application.”

          Now, unless you want to repeal that and put us all in danger of a theocracy, you gotta stop with this ridiculous “Let the people decide” nonsense.

          We have spoken and we, as a society and as a community, have decided that it is important to protect ourselves from the religious preferences of any one group.

          Now, if you have an argument that ISN’T religiously based… an honest argument that can’t be debunked within seconds or already has been shown to be false… then let’s have it.

          Until then, you’re howling like a lunatic about things you willfully refuse to understand.

          • Jus' Askin' says:

            Gender is a social construct

            So Male & Female, Female & Female and Male & Male all come under a banner of a social construct ;-) ;-)

            What is the origins of marriage?
            What is the purpose of marriage?

            I truly feel there needs to be a change and I know my point is getting through

            SSM does not affect, effect or impact ME in any way :-D

            Because You think that it is ‘Not Wrong’ does NOT mean that it is ‘Right’ :-)

            “Religious people will have their say but the Devil will have his Way!!!” :-(

            • Mike Hind says:

              The first part of your post is nonsensical blathering.

              But to answer your questions, something you continue to refuse to do:

              The origins of marriage are property consolidation.

              The purpose of marriage is to give someone outside the family a set of rights afforded to a family member.

              You have no point, so no, it’s not getting through. You keep moving the goalposts.

              It doesn’t affect you, so why keep fighting it?

              And literally, the definition of “Right” is “Not Wrong”. This sentence is gibberish.

              And “The Devil” is a religious construct and we’ve discussed that. You were lying when you said it’s not about religion, weren’t you?

  19. sandgrownan says:

    PM are pleased…well of course they are. They are unconscionable douchebags.