Legal - Canada - Commons
sense: debates on gay marriage
February 22, 2005
sense: debates on gay marriage
House of Commons - Feb 16 - 18
Speaker," said Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ) on Feb.
16, 2004, "first, I would say that the government should not have
referred this bill to the Supreme Court,
and that this is a question the answer to which we have known from the
outset. We should have proceeded before the last election, regardless
of the electoral considerations that
were driving this government. Had it not been for the Prime Minister's
dithering, the Leader of the Opposition
would not have been able to raise this issue. Having said that, in my
opinion, there is no option but to use the notwithstanding clause if we
want to prevent such a thing.
the Charter of Rights and Freedoms talks about reasonable
limits, and it would be unreasonable to decide that, because of their
sexual orientation, a man and a woman do not have the same rights.
In my opinion, this is the fundamental issue. I am also convinced
that we must adopt this bill, and that we must do so at the earliest
opportunity, to avoid dividing our
society and to make it clear that the issues that we debated in
the past, namely abortion and divorce—which took us to the same place—have
now been accepted by society and are now behind us.
Bourassa in Ottawa with the "Famous
who led the movement to have women's rights recognized. On October
18, 1929, the Privy Council declared in the famous " Person's Case
of 1929" that women were persons and thus eligible to hold any appointed
or elected office. The monument was erected in Calgary, Alberta,
and was unveiled by Governor General Adrienne Clarkson on October
18th, 1999 the 70th anniversary of the "Person's Case." The following
year, on October 18th, 2000, a duplicate of this sculpture was unveiled
on Parliament Hill, Ottawa.
divorced people are no longer stigmatized, as they were in the 1960s.
Oddly, many people who were opposed to giving women the right to vote
are now on the same side as those who, today, are opposed to same sex
marriage. This is what I meant when I talked about progress. Do we recognize
that all people are born equal and free, and that they can live their
lives equal and free? That is the fundamental issue.
am a Franco-Ontarian and, as such, a member of a language minority.
The Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects such minorities, and
I am grateful that it does. If gays and lesbians were to be removed
from the protection of the charter, under the pretext that this
is not a legal issue but a moral one, this would mean that, in the
future, a similar application could be made to remove language minorities
from the protection of the charter, under the pretext that it is
too expensive. Consequently, it becomes an economic issue. Therefore,
we have a choice before us. Either go forward with Bill
the actual bill which is before the House, make the law uniform
for all of Canada or go back to the past using the notwithstanding
Paul DeVillers (Simcoe North, Liberal), House of Commons, Feb. 18,
the Courts, and Parliament
Parliament was adjourned and we were no longer sitting in caucuses,
[for Ontario] decision came out. Contrary to this duty to act to
support the laws of Canada and the Parliament of Canada and the
integrity of the Parliament of Canada, the prime minister of the
day, without consultation with caucus, without consultation with
Parliament, and without letting the
finish its job, decided
not to appeal
the Court of Appeal decision of the province of Ontario, effectively
undercutting and undermining his own legislation and the expressed
will of Parliament."
Tom Wappel (Scarborough Southwest, Liberal), House of Commons, Feb.
place of Parliament
Mr. Pierre Paquette (Joliette, BQ), House of Commons, Feb. 18, 2005:
to demonstrate the way this issue can be understood, one of my constituents
has written to me, saying that he is a practising Catholic, very involved
in his community and his church. He wanted me to know that a number of
Catholics think the Church is not moving in the right direction by not
recognizing the rights of same sex couple to marry in a religious ceremony.
replied that, while I was sympathetic to his idea, it was not
my place as a member of Parliament, or the place of Parliament,
to pass judgment on debates within the Catholic Church or the Protestant
churches or Muslim or Jewish congregations. That is the domain of moral
we are being asked to do as parliamentarians is to decide whether the
state will give same sex couples the same right to marry as opposite sex
couples have. So, this is a legal issue and we should not get involved
in an internal religious debate, whether it is with the Catholic Church
or any other church. I should also point out that, in terms of the rulings
made by the courts of various provinces, eight courts, in seven
provinces and in the Yukon, ruled that preventing same sex couples
from getting married violated their right to equality, as provided under
the charter, and that such a violation of a protected right could not
be justified in a free and democratic society."