Advocates are calling on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to condemn “disgraceful” and “disgusting” posters found in Melbourne that urge Australians to “Stop The Fags.”
The posters, which show two figures menacing a child with rainbow belts, spout a series of misleading and profoundly offensive claims -- including, 92 per cent of children raised by gay parents are abused, 51 per cent have depression and 72 per cent are obese.
The findings are credited to Donald Paul Sullins, a priest at Catholic University of America whose research has been widely discredited.
Melburnian Dan Leah-McGill was the first to draw attention to the vicious campaign, posting a photo of the poster found in Heffernan Lane to Twitter.
He captioned the upload: “How is this for a unity movement?”
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has taken to Facebook to condemn the “disgusting” posters, urging his counterpart to do the same.
“Overnight, it appears some disgusting posters have emerged against marriage equality. I absolutely condemn them and encourage Malcolm Turnbull to do the same,” he wrote. “Labor opposed this postal survey because we feared exactly this kind of hurtful filth would emerge.”
He added: “This kind of garbage isn’t ‘debate’, it’s abuse. I’m so sorry that LGBTI Australians have to put up with it.”
LGBTI rights advocate and ‘Just Equal’ spokesman, Rodney Croome, also called on the PM to condemn such vilification, and to “set out the parameters for respectful debate.”
“We have long warned the Government that a plebiscite or postal vote on marriage equality would amplify extremist and hateful views – yet the Prime Minister assured us of a respectful debate,” he said.
“It is now incumbent on the Prime Minister, who initiated the postal vote campaign, to take responsibility and denounce anti-LGBTI vilification like this poster.”
The hateful campaign come less than two weeks after Turnbull announced a $122 million postal vote on gay marriage.
A result is expected by 15 November 2017.
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