August 26th 2017

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Articles from this issue:

CANBERRA OBSERVED Crikey, is nobody a true dinks Aussie these days?

SAME-SEX MARRIAGE Hundreds of doctors call on AMA to withdraw defective statement on same-sex marriage

EUTHANASIA What disability advocates say about assisted suicide by Daniel Giles

RIGHTS Triggs' contribution to human rights and the role of international human rights bodies

ENERGY High prices 'destroying the economy': Glencore

ENERGY Renewable energy barely even a fair weather friend

ECONOMICS The world it is a-changin': globalisation in crisis

SAME-SEX MARRIAGE Gay Liberals' push out of step with LGBTI realities

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS South Africa is losing its rainbow nation credentials

MUSIC A moral scale: Does 'good' music make us better?

CINEMA War for the Planet of the Apes: Best-laid plans of apes and men

BOOK REVIEW Risk nothing; gain nothing

BOOK REVIEW The most infamous crime in history

MARRIAGE The issue, Bill, is transgender marriage




SAME-SEX MARRIAGE The media, champions for free speech and rights (for the media), demonstrate predictable inability to contain bias on postal vote

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Hundreds of doctors call on AMA to withdraw defective statement on same-sex marriage

by Peter Westmore

News Weekly, August 26, 2017

Hundreds of doctors have urged the AMA to withdraw its support for “same-sex marriage”, after the AMA issued a statement supporting “same-sex marriage” without consulting its membership.

On August 5, a working group of doctors issued a media release accusing the AMA of “misleading the public” on the issue, and launched a petition for other AMA members to sign.

A former AMA state president and two AMA life members are among the group of doctors urging the AMA to retract its “fatally flawed” “Position statement on marriage equality”. The AMA statement was published in May.

Spokesman for the group, former Tasmanian president and AMA Fellow Chris Middleton, has resigned from the AMA because of its position statement.

He says: “The AMA has strayed into social activism and has mortgaged its credibility.”

The group includes a paediatrician, child psychiatrist, physician, occupational medicine practitioner and two GPs. They say: “The AMA has misled the public on a great political question; it has also neglected the needs and best interests of the child.”

In a 15-page critique delivered to AMA federal president Michael Gannon at the end of July, the doctors identified a number of misleading clinical claims, in particular the AMA’s assertion that there is no peer-reviewed evidence of poorer outcomes for children of same-sex parented families. The critique declares that to be “unequivocally false”.

“We reference peer-reviewed articles that do find poorer outcomes for children raised by same-sex couples, and we also show that the AMA was aware of this evidence. By denying publicly that there is any such evidence of detriment to children, while admitting privately that there is, the AMA has misled the public on a crucial aspect of the marriage debate and must be held to account.”

In addition, the critique analyses “politically sensitive” but unjustified AMA claims that our current marriage laws harm the health of LGBT persons, showing that the AMA’s evidence is specious and the claims are misleading.

The AMA was given this analysis, but declined to correct the erroneous assertions in its position statement. The doctors have told the AMA they will now “undertake that task” themselves, sending the critique to federal MPs and Senators “to minimise the harm done by the AMA prior to any debate … on marriage”.

The working group has also asked medical professionals to add their name to the urgent petition launched asking the AMA to retract its position statement.

The petition states:

“In our view, the Australian Medical Association’s ‘Position statement on marriage equality’ has misled politicians and the public.

“On the crucial question of harm to children of same-sex parents, the AMA misrepresents the science by asserting publicly that no peer-reviewed evidence of harm exists while acknowledging privately that it does.


• On the alleged link between ‘marriage equality’ and LGBT health, the AMA violates academic standards by making an unequivocal claim based on poor-quality evidence without considering contrary facts.

• On the alleged link between ‘marriage equality’ and LGBT access to health care, the AMA relies on evidence from America that is irrelevant to Australia.

• On the emotive assertion that ‘tragic consequences in medical emergencies’ will occur if we don’t have ‘marriage equality’, the AMA uses specious evidence and false legal argument.”

The petition continues: “The position statement is fatally flawed, not least by its poor scholarship. It is unworthy of the Australian Medical Association and we call for its immediate and public retraction.”

Several hundred medical practitioners, including several professors at universities around Australia, have already signed the petition.

Medical practitioners who wish to sign the petition can access it online at:

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