I don’t know about you guys but when Family First says something is great I get worried.
So when those reactionaries say NACT has strengthened the Families Commission with its new appointments it’s worth having a second look at what’s going on.
The Families Commission is Peter Dunne’s baby he wanted it to protect the ‘family’ by which he meant some kind of mythical 1950s style family (no gays or divorcees please). Didn’t turn out like that in practice because it employed good, qualified people, not bigots. Surprisingly, the Families Commission has become a voice for sensible, well thought out, liberal policies alongside the Children’s Commissioner, the Human Rights Commission, and the Race Relations Conciliator.
That was never going to last. NACT has appointed Bruce Pilbrow from the evangelical Parents Inc and Christine Rankin, the woman Jenny Shipley chose to bring in her infamous Code of Social Responsibility. Even Peter Dunne thinks these two are too reactionary.
It’s clear that the plan is to shut down the Families Commission as a progressive, science-based voice and, in the process pay off National’s religious extremist backers. Actually, probably the latter is the aim, the second a nice side-effect; National doesn’t care much about the Families Commission but the evangelicals do.
OK, so losing the Families Commission isn’t the end of the world but it’s a start. Next target: Joris De Bres.