Coalition for Marriage’s Karina Okotel thumbs her nose at Executive Council of Australian Jewry

On the “Same Sex Marriage Debate” episode of Q&A (Monday October 23 2017) Karina Okotel from the Coalition for Marriage dismissed claims from the Executive Council of Australian Jewry:

TONY JONES
I’m going to bring in Karina here, because obviously you’re concerned about these areas precisely.

KARINA OKOTEL
The short answer to your question is that if same-sex marriage is legalised, no, Christian schools will not be immune from the consequences that flow from that. And we’ve seen that just last week, when Theresa May in the UK said that one of her greatest achievements in her parliamentary career was legalising same-sex marriage. And the next step now is to ensure that there is LGBTI sex education in all schools – not just government schools, all schools.

TONY JONES
OK, Magda.

MAGDA SZUBANSKI
I actually… You said fact-check. I did fact-check a couple of the claims that you’ve made. One of them was about the guy who’s the prominent guy from Canada for the No campaign. And he said it’s been sort of put forward that because he wouldn’t accept teachings about gender and sex education, he was suing the school.
He had a six-year-long battle going on and his claims, his list of claims, included things like he didn’t want his children to be exposed to what he called false teachings, which meant the mere idea that there were other sets of values that existed, anything to do with the environment, to do with astrology, which is in newspapers everywhere, and wizards, meaning the kids couldn’t discuss… He wanted to be informed. It was not because of a difference of views, it was…it was unworkable.
And one more thing – the other one I want… You mentioned the Jewish school in London. I fact-checked that because I actually went to the site of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry and they said that is inaccurate. If you want to tell the Jews how to run Jewish schools – because we’re talking about freedom of religion – it seems to me…

TONY JONES
Just to confirm, this is a story about a Jewish school in the UK and the suggestion or allegation that it was going to be forced to shut down because they were refusing to teach gender diversity?

MAGDA SZUBANSKI
And I’m not saying that’s inaccurate. The Executive Council of Australian Jewry is saying that that’s inaccurate.

TONY JONES
We’ll quickly throw that to Karina.

KARINA OKOTEL
The council are the only ones who say that that’s inaccurate. Everyone else says that it is accurate…

MAGDA SZUBANSKI
They’re the peak body. They’re the peak body.

KARINA OKOTEL
The reports are on the internet. If you don’t believe that it’s true…

(LAUGHTER)

KARINA OKOTEL
..have a look at the very reports that are provided by the inspectorate itself.

MAGDA SZUBANSKI
So, you don’t accept the word of the peak body of Australian Jewry?

KARINA OKOTEL
It’s inaccurate to say that they didn’t face consequences as a result. The reality is that the inspector came, inspected the school and they failed inspections after same-sex marriage was legalised.

TONY JONES
I’m going to draw a line. People can fact-check…

KARINA OKOTEL
Please fact-check it. I would ask people to fact-check it.

TONY JONES
I’d expect the fact-checkers will fact-check it.

MAGDA SZUBANSKI
I did fact-check. The Jews fact-checked it. But they don’t know, apparently.

(LAUGHTER)

KARINA OKOTEL
They’re the only body that say that.

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