Maurice Vellacott, MP

“You can put lipstick on a pig, but it still ain’t pretty”

For Immediate Release                                                            June 24, 2005

OTTAWA – Conservative Party Member of Parliament Maurice Vellacott (Saskatoon-Wanuskewin) has always stood firmly against the Liberal agenda of changing the legal definition of marriage. It has been clear, however, that the Liberals were committed to bulldozing their marriage redefinition bill, C-38, through Parliament. Vellacott has, therefore, submitted amendments attempting to mitigate the serious damage that the Liberal anti-marriage bill will do to Canadian society. Vellacott has introduced several Report Stage amendments to Bill C-38 that, if passed, he says, “might afford a bit of protection for those who fear the loss of their constitutional freedoms of religion, conscience and speech in the face of Bill C-38. The fact is, though, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it still ain’t pretty.”

Vellacott notes, “Much of the risk posed to the constitutional freedoms that Canadians have valued for decades comes from the impact of Bill C-38 on areas of provincial jurisdiction. The federal government has no power to protect Canadians in these areas.” Provinces have not yet moved to write in protections for religious and conscience freedoms jeopardized by Bill C-38. Marriage commissioners in Saskatchewan and Newfoundland are cases in point. “These commissioners travelled to Ottawa to press their cases before the Parliamentary C-38 committee, but their concerns mostly fell on deaf ears,” says Vellacott.

Vellacott says, “C-38 is also a threat to the ongoing survival of marriage. Reports out of Scandinavian countries and the Netherlands show that when non-marriage arrangements are elevated to the same level of importance as marriage, then marriage suffers: fewer couples marry, fewer families have children, and more children are born to unmarried parents.”

“In light of the documented risk factors to children not living in intact heterosexual marriage family arrangements, the government has a public policy interest in protecting and promoting heterosexual marriage,” says Vellacott. The data reveals that children living outside of such families are at significantly greater risk for having problems at school, for drug and alcohol abuse, for participation in crime, and other problems. “That will be the legacy of this Liberal-Bloc-NDP coalition,” says Vellacott. “It’s a cruel joke when this Liberal government says that it is concerned about the weakest members of society.”

Anticipating debate this coming Monday on Bill C-38, now that the Liberal-Bloc-NDP coalition has passed their NDP budget bill, Vellacott is preparing to argue for his amendments. “If an arsonist sets fire to your home,” says Vellacott, “you do whatever you can to rescue your loved ones from greater harm and you do what you can to prevent further structural damage.”

“I love my country, and I’m saddened at the consequential detriment there will be to precious people and society across my homeland if this bill passes,” says Vellacott. He concluded by saying, “I take no pleasure in being prophetic about the hurt and harm this would bring on our society in the years ahead.”

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