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First Misleading 'No' To Same-Sex Marriage Ad Airs To Sharp Criticism

The Coalition For Marriage has run their first TV ad scaring people into voting No to marriage equality in the postal survey.

The ad, which aired on commercial television on Tuesday night, features four 'mothers' sharing their fears about the impact marriage equality will have on their children.

"Kids in year 7 are being asked to role play being in a same-sex relationship," said one woman.

"When same-sex marriage passes as law overseas, this type of (school) program becomes widespread and compulsory,” said another.

"The school told my son he could wear a dress next year if he felt like it," said Cella White, an outspoken opponent of the Safe Schools program whose son attends Frankston High School in Melbourne. The school's principal has denied her claims.

Equality Campaign director Tiernan Brady criticised the ad for misleading people with "red herrings."

"The people behind this ad know that Australians believe everyone should have the same opportunity to marry, so they are deliberately resorting to misleading people," he said.

The ad's claim that legalising same-sex marriage will impact on gender education in schools was slammed by Education Minister Simon Birmingham.

"It is patently ridiculous to suggest that allowing same-sex couples to marry is somehow going to see some new wave of teaching reform sweep across the country.”

"That's just not going to happen. This is a simple issue, and it should not be conflated with other issues."

The strategy to link same-sex marriage to serious implications for society is being masterminded by Tony Abbott and The Australian Christian Lobby, based on the strategy used by the No campaign in the USA, which warned of gay propaganda in schools, gay marriage leading to bestiality and religious freedoms being violated.

"I say to you if you don't like same-sex marriage, vote no," Abbott said after the survey was announced. "If you're worried about religious freedom and freedom of speech, vote no, and if you don't like political correctness, vote no because voting no will help to stop political correctness in its tracks."

The postal survey does not yet have safeguards to prevent deceptive or misleading information from being distributed because it’s being run by the Australian Bureau of Statistics instead of the Australian Electoral Commission.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said the government would not be strengthening advertising restrictions until after the High Court decides if the survey can go ahead. The hearing is set for September 5 and 6.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten told Fairfax Media the ad was "offensive and hurtful to LGBTI Australians and their families".

"This is exactly what was predicted when Malcolm Turnbull decided to waste $122 million on a postal survey. He gave the green light to this rubbish.”

"This is not freedom of speech. This is freedom to hurt. I just want to tell LGBTI families that they are not on their own. Most people know this is total rubbish."

#SameSexMarriagePostalSurvey #AustralianPolitics