OTTAWA, November 30, 2001 ( – In comments made in the Senate on November 22, British Columbia Senator Mobina Jaffer said defending the existing definition of marriage is tantamount to “giving comfort to those who hate.” Focus on the Family reported that Jaffer’s comments came in a debate around a bill seeking to affirm in law that marriage is exclusively “between a man and a woman,” introduced last January by Senator Anne Cools.

Jaffer said speeches in favour of traditional marriage left her “dumbfounded” especially following the recent murder of Aaron Webster, a homosexual man who was viciously beaten to death in Vancouver’s Stanley Park. Today’s Family News noted that Jaffer warned Senators that those who speak in favour of Bill S-9 are only helping to ensure such crimes keep recurring. “They are telling more generations of young Canadians that we should not treat homosexuals equally,” she said. “They are also teaching that intolerance of homosexuals is both proper and righteous.”

Derek Rogusky, the director of research at Focus on the Family Canada, expressed alarm at Jaffer’s logic. “This is a blatant attempt to limit debate on a very serious issue and silence the many Canadians who feel very strongly that marriage is an exclusively heterosexual relationship,” he stated. “There is a big difference between strongly disagreeing with a lifestyle and inciting hatred.” REAL Women Canada said that the novice senator “has insulted the intelligence and integrity of the Senate, her own institution. She also has exploited the tragic murder of a gay man in Vancouver, by claiming there is a connection between the murder and the law on marriage.”

(with files from Today’s Family News )