- Liberal party vice-president says flak for being against SSM is worse than racism
- Karina Okotel said she is scared same-sex marriage will limit freedom of speech
- Ms Okotel said she’s been labelled a ‘bigot’ and a ‘homophobe’ for opposing SSM
- She argues debate about same-sex marriage makes good democratic sense
A Liberal party boss has opened up about the criticism she has received for opposing same-sex marriage, saying the hostility she has received for her position is worse than racism.
Karina Okotel has written an opinion piece in The Australian saying the ‘discrimination and hate’ she has received for being opposed to same-sex marriage has been worse than what she has experienced from racists.
Ms Okotel is a Liberal party vice-president based in Melbourne and was born in Australia to Sri Lankan parents.
Liberal vice-president Karina Okotel has opened up about the hostility she has faced
Ms Okotel (pictured right) is a first-generation Australian born to Sri Lankan parents
‘I do from time to time experience discrimination on the basis of race’, she wrote.
After saying she is ‘scared’ about ‘what same-sex marriage leads to’, Ms Okotel said being labelled a ‘bigot’ or ‘homophobe’ is ‘even more disturbing’.
‘I wonder what life will be like for my own kids should they form a view that supports traditional marriage.
‘To protect them, will I have to caution them to keep their views to themselves, not to ask questions and not speak up?’
Ms Okotel said she has been refused service and received insulting comments based on her ethnicity.
In the opinion piece Ms Okotel said legalising same-sex marriage will impact freedom of speech, religion and association.
Ms Okotel said the flak she has received is worse than the discrimination she has faced from racists
She argues that respectful discussion and debate on same-sex marriage is good sense and an important part of the democratic process.
Ms Okotel told Daily Mail Australia she is most concerned about not being able to have a debate about the merits of same-sex marriage if it is legalised.
Postal ballots for the same-sex marriage plebiscite are being sent out this month.
Postal ballots for the same-sex marriage plebiscite are being sent out this month