Monday, 20 January 2014, 12:00 , by Stephen Calleja
Nationalist Party leader Simon Busuttil said that gay people, like heterosexuals, do not have a right to children. Therefore, where gay adoptions are concerned, the most important thing is the protection of the rights of the children.
Civil unions and gay adoptions are two separate issues, Dr Busuttil said in an interview. With regard to civil unions, the PN is in agreement and will vote in favour, but it will insist on a clear distinction between a civil union and marriage. This does not mean that the intention is to reduce the rights of gay people, but the law should establish a difference.
For example, legislation should recognise that there should not be a religious celebration for civil unions and also that what applies in marriage should not necessarily apply in a civil union, said Dr Busuttil.
This distinction would make it clear that marriage is between a man and a woman and a civil union is for either heterosexual couples who prefer this option to marriage, or for gay couples, he said.
On this, the two parties are seemingly ready to agree and if this happens it would be a great step forward.
Gay adoption is a different issue, said Dr Busuttil. It was not a case of the rights of the parents or prospective parents, but the rights of child or children. Sexual orientation is not part of the equation here, because no couple has the right to have children, not even in a natural way. When it comes to gay adoption, the argument based on gay people’s rights does not hold water, he said.
This means that the focus must be on the interests of the children. “I am not saying that we are absolutely for or against gay adoption, which is on the whole a new concept in our society as it is in other societies. In Italy, for example, Socialist leader Renzi has said it is time for Italy to introduce civil unions but not gay adoptions. Can we not take more time? Would it not be better to study the impact [of gay adoptions] on our society and on the children?”, the PN leader said.