But as for me and my house…

So the Abortion Law Reform Bill has passed. (Yes, I know that this is old news, but I have been away for the weekend, stranded in Mildura with lurgy yesterday, and only just gotten back to my computer).

The bill passed by 23 votes to 17. Here is how they voted (Check this list before you go to the polls at the next election):

FOR 23 Votes
Greg Barber Greens
Candy Broad Labor
Andrea Coote Liberal
Kaye Darveniza Labor
David Davis Liberal
Philip Davis Liberal
Khalil Eideh Labor
Peter Hall Nationals
Colleen Hartland Greens
Gavin Jennings Labor
David Koch Liberal
Shaun Leane Labor
Wendy Lovell Liberal
Justin Madden Labor
Jenny Mikakos Labor
Martin Pakula Labor
Sue Pennicuik Greens
Jaala Pulford Labor
Johan Scheffer Labor
Brian Tee Labor
Evan Thornley Labor
Gayle Tierney Labor
Matthew Viney Labor

AGAINST 17 Votes
Bruce Atkinson Liberal
Richard Dalla-Riva Liberal
Damian Drum Nationals
Nazih Elasmar Labor
Bernie Finn Liberal
Matthew Guy Liberal
Peter Kavanagh Democratic Labor Party
Jan Kronberg Liberal
John Lenders Labor
Ed O’Donohue Liberal
Donna Petrovich Liberal
Inga Peulich Liberal
Gordon Rich-Phillips Liberal
Bob Smith Labor
Adem Somyurek Labor
Theo Theophanous Labor
John Vogels Liberal

This is how Catholics in Melbourne will react.

Legal action can be expected – perhaps one good thing about the fact that none of the amendments were accepted. This makes the new legislation more liable to being thrown out in a legal challenge.

But as Archbishop Hart has said: “For the time being the battle is lost in the legislature. But not in the hearts and minds of good people.”

It certainly is not over in the Schütz-Beaton household. It may surprise you that we have discussed this issue long and hard over the dinner table with our 10 and 8 year old daughters. And here is something to think about: They get the issues. Right down to “Its a baby” and “What can we do to help women who are in a situation where they think an abortion is their only choice?”.

Before the vote was taken, I made it clear to them that whatever the law decides, we are in the situation of the Israelites before they crossed over the river Jordan into Canaan. We have to decide between life and death. The people in our society around us do not share our values or committments. Therefore “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” And all the children said: “Amen.”

PS. We are not impressed with the outburst of Bob Smith, the House President, in response to the disturbance from the gallery at the bill’s passing. The Age cited him as saying: “Where is the security? Remove her any way. For God’s sake do your job. Jesus. F—ing bananas. Amateur hour up here.” SCE wonders whether there would have been hell to pay had he used the same words with the name of Allah.

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0 Responses to But as for me and my house…

  1. Therese says:

    Thanks for the list of who voted what. This is the first time I have seen that.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for your blog. The problem is that Victoria forgets that the Brumby Govt is on a crusade of social engineering. The state will forget by the next election and they will get away with it.

  3. Joshua says:

    If the WA Labor government hadn’t been unexpectedly defeated at the polls, they too would have continued with their jihad of social engineering (which I would refuse to call a crusade for obvious reasons).

    However, look on the bright side: as a friend once remarked, the Catholic Church in Australia would be a lot more fervent “if they were burning priests on Bourke Street” [outside Parliament].

  4. Past Elder says:

    I am sorry to hear the news, though not at all surprised. It’s been that way here for some time.

    And you are quite right in how you presented it to the family. Society, neither here nor there, does not share our values, and we are strangers in a strange land. On these issues, I say again, while there is a time and place for our differences, that time and place happens in the context of a discussion among fellow strangers, Catholic, Lutheran, and other church bodies too whose stands make them strangers with us.

  5. Terra says:

    The problem the state of persecution that Joshua welcomes is that while the few may be fervent, far more will apostacise! It is far easier to be good if we live with good people, with laws and other helps in place to aid us on the path to heaven – its why we seek just laws after all!

    I doubt the legal battle will go anyway for us – the real battle we have to win is over hearts and minds. Your conversation with your children is one I hope every family is having…

  6. Paul says:

    I live in NSW, and eventually a movement will start for a similar bill here. The government here is trying to hang on, so they have other things on their mind, but who knows when it will start.

    Do you think the wise thing would be for Catholics to bring the issue up now or wait until someone else does?

  7. Jeff Tan says:

    David’s family is probably on the best track: start educating our children now. It’s hard to beat the lobbying that is quite capable of manipulating polls, obfuscating facts and redefining the world in whatever image they please.

    We must get back to catechism. Parents should teach their kids. Seminaries should teach seminarians. Clergy should teach parishes. There’s no other way to win this. And even if we can never correct these unjust laws, we can at least arm our children and ourselves so that we should never do what is legal but wrong.

    And we should import the Feminists for Life movement here, I think.


  8. Schütz says:

    Do you think the wise thing would be for Catholics to bring the issue up now or wait until someone else does?

    Bring it up NOW!! And get people talking about it, so that we go on the attack rather than on the defensive.

    Here in Melbourne, we are looking at ways in which we can bring the debate on Euthanasia into Interfaith Dialogue – now before it comes up again in the Parliament. We need to be more united on this than we were on the abortion issue.

    start educating our children now

    Because if we don’t, someone else will. In fact, that is what we saw in the Parliament – the results of 40 (50?) years of secular humanist / relativist education in our schools.

    Our kids need to be confident that, when all is said and done, some things simply TRUE.

  9. Louise says:

    Quite right, David, and it has the added advantage that children know intuitively (because it’s so obvious) that abortion is wrong, so introducing it to them at a young age makes use of the child’s relative innocence.

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