Australian PM Julia Gillard Pulls Out of Event Over Christian Leader’s Anti-Gay Remarks About Smoking

Yesterday I posted remarks made by Australian Christian Lobby managing director Jim Wallace, who said during a debate in Tasmania that smoking is healthier than being gay.

WallaceSaid Wallace:

"I think we're going to owe smokers a big apology when the homosexual community's own statistics for its health – which it presents when it wants more money for health – are that is has higher rates of drug-taking, of suicide, it has the life of a male reduced by up to 20 years. The life of smokers is reduced by something like seven to 10 years and yet we tell all our kids at school they shouldn't smoke."

The remarks have cause Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard to pull out of an ACL event.

GillardSaid Gillard:

''To compare the health effects of smoking cigarettes with the many struggles gay and lesbian Australians endure in contemporary society is heartless and wrong. Although everyone is entitled to their own view, these statements reiterated again today on behalf of ACL are totally unacceptable. 'In light of this, I believe my attendance at the conference would be inappropriate. There are a range of deeply held views in the community on the issue of same-sex marriage but it is the responsibility of all parties in this debate to be respectful and responsible in any public comments they make.''

Wallace responded to Gillard's move by claiming anti-gay activists/Christians are the real victims:

"This is a victory for the relentless campaign of demonisation against anyone who would challenge the gay activists' agenda in the public square."


  1. Steve says

    It’s deeply troubling that she wanted to appear in front of a theocratic lobbying group no matter those remarks. She is extremely busy sucking up to religious fanatics, although she pretends to be an atheist and is cohabiting with her boyfriend.

  2. Chuck Mielke says

    I love the fact that asking anti-gay “christian” organizations to tell the truth, to stop lying about homosexual life expectancies and other patently false claims about us, is somehow a demonization of those anti-gay activists. Talk about a double standard — they get to demonize us with lies, but it’s somehow wrong for us to call out their lies? I know these “christians” love to play the victim, but this exchange shows how far into lunacy they’ll go to do so.

  3. Pete N SFO says

    The demand for Equality is always portrayed as an “agenda”

    Try living without the same rights as the knucklehead next door and see what you’ll be thinking about.

    I suspect, it will be Equality.

  4. Peter M. says

    She shouldn’t have agreed to speak at this event in the first place. As Steve pointed out correctly she is indeed “extremely busy sucking up to religious fanatics”.

    I’m really flabbergasted by the audacity of Wallace’s claim of a “relentless campaign of demonisation” against anti-gay activists/Christians, when all they do is exactly that, relentlessly demonizing the LGBT community.

  5. Blake says

    Gillard makes no sense as an anti-equality atheist!

    Why was she going to speak at a religious event in the first place and why would they want her to, if she is in fact a ‘legitimate’ atheist?

    Go figure that the majority of the Australian population supports equality, but the government still will not move forward.
    At least the USA government has a weak excuse for not advancing equality.

  6. Michaelandfred says

    The whole thing is strange. They don’t mind a straight atheist as PM, but hate gay Christians… This is what happens when you late fables rule over critical thinking.

  7. Freddie says

    If Gillard thinks this will be a sop to an Australian gay community dreadfully disappointed in their atheist, cohabiting, centre-left PM’s anti-equality stance, she’s got another thing coming.

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