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(Image courtesy of the Australian Independent Media Network)

Where do the loyalties of our elected leaders lie? Are they with the Australian people, the monarchy, the church or could corporate donors be wielding influence on public policy? Julie Walsh says it’s time we considered our children’s future.

OUR EQUAL OPPORTUNITY Laws provide protection against discrimination on such grounds as sex, religion, race, age and the like. So how does all of this relate to an Australian becoming the legal head of the Australian State?

Consider the words spoken by Chief Justice of Australia Robert French in his WA Law Society speech in May 2008.

"It is unacceptable in contemporary Australia that the legal head of the Australian State, under present constitutional arrangements, can never be chosen by the people or their representatives, cannot be other than a member of the Anglican Church, can never be other than British, and can never be an indigenous person. Our nationhood is not complete until the change to a Republic is made."

When we take a step back and look at our Feudal System, there is evidence of strong connections between the monarchy and the church and it is likely that those connections continue to have some influence on our political system.

Many of our very own politicians and attorney generals, including Tony Abbott and George Brandis have attended educational institutions in England. Magdalen College, which George Brandis attended, even has connections with the Queensland Bar. Magdalen College was founded in 1458 by William of Waynflete, Catholic Bishop of Winchester.

According to one article written in an English online journal, it has been suggested that an Oxford degree could have created a robotic governing class and that

‘... graduates of Oxford’s Politics, Philosophy and Economics course form the largest single component of the most despised generation of politicians since the Great Reform Act.’

Our Equal Opportunity Act 1984 states that it provides remedies for discrimination on the grounds of religion but appears to contradict itself in Sections 72 and 73 where it is apparent that special provision has been made for Religious Bodies allegedly allowing them to discriminate. Could there possibly be one law in Australia for the church and another law for the people?

According to one article:

‘... the Catholic Church has paid $43 million to keep sex abuse secret.’

 Another relating to clergy abuse states:

Parliament's committee is secretive, evasive and doing the minimum it can get away with.’

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, found that Cardinal George Pell and the Sydney Catholic Archdiocese repeatedly failed in their dealings with Sydney abuse victim John Ellis. In the light of these findings, we should be asking ourselves about the role of the church in Australian society especially for our children's sake.

According to an article in The Drum in August 2013, ‘Religion continues its free ride without our blessing’, the government provided around $31 billion annually in assistance to religious institutions.

The article notes that a worldwide poll conducted by Win-Gallup International, found only 37 per cent of Australians were religious and this is likely to have reduced since the poll was conducted in 2012. Yet the increasing influence and funding of religion in Australia persists. Furthermore, the article continues, the outsourcing of a lot of social welfare to various religious organisations also exempts them from anti-discriminations laws.

One could ask the question:  if the Catholic Archdiocese failed in their dealings as noted in the Royal Commission, can they be trusted to fairly administer funding to our most vulnerable, especially those who are not religious?

 

Cardinal Pell, on another matter when debating Richard Dawkins on ABC’s Q&A program on 12 April 2012, said:

“But I believe on behalf of the innocent victims in history that the scales of justice should work out. And if they don’t, life is radically unjust, the law of the jungle prevails.”

Does the law of the jungle now prevail in Australia? Has it now come down to survival of the fittest? Are we to just forget about those who have worked and paid taxes to support this country that may have fallen upon difficult times? Our unemployed, disabled, elderly, veterans, Aboriginals and even families struggling to make ends meet and perhaps even their children too?

What about religious influence on government policy?

According to an article in The Australian Independent Media Network, Cardinal Pell has stated in his 2006 Legatus Summit speech:

‘Some of the hysteric and extreme claims about global warming are also a symptom of pagan emptiness.’

In 2011, he delivered the annual Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) lecture in London. The GWPF is U.K.’s highest profile climate skeptic group and, like Australia’s climate skeptic factory, the Institute of Public Affairs, has tax deductibility yet fails to divulge the source of its funding. The above article goes on to report that Cardinal Pell’s “evidence” all comes from The Hancock Free Enterprise Lecture, University of Notre Dame, Fremantle, June 2011, which was sponsored by Gina Rinehart

It has been evident throughout history that some women who have stood up to the church have been vilified and at times identified as Devil's Consorts or Witches. A more recent example of this is the "Ditch the Witch" poster which has religious undertones.

Cardinal George Pell, is reported to have warned Catholic voters that the Australian Greens was "thoroughly anti-Christian" and "sweet camouflaged poison." It has even been reported that religion could be used to manipulate the masses just like drugs and alcohol and our mainstream media.

Could people's fears and insecurities possibly be exploited by some to manipulate them to accept another agenda? Many religious teachings depict women as being inferior to men and this could be one of the very reasons so few women represent Australia in our current political arena. Isn't it about time we all challenged the male-invented, male-perpetuated and male-dominated language and "religious" thinking of our ancient priests, and banned religion from Australian Politics altogether?

It was reported in December 2011 that Queen Elizabeth could have supported Australia becoming a Republic but very little has been reported since.

Perhaps it is time for all Australians to ask themselves where the loyalties of our politicians and our very own Attorney General lie. Are they with the Australian people, the monarchy, the church or could corporations be a major influence? After all, we do have our children's future to consider.

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