By Staff Writer
The newly established Australian Sex Party has pledged to make Viagra more accessible and convene a royal commission into child sex abuse in the nation’s religious institutions.
Under the slogan, We are serious about sex, the party was officially launched at Sexpo in Melbourne yesterday in reaction to what it called “an increasing resistance to ‘nanny state’ politics”.
Party convener, Fiona Patten said the party would first take aim at Communications Minister Stephen Conroy’s proposed mandatory internet filtering.
“Senator Conroy’s plans actually threaten the existence of the Sex Party online which represents a real challenge to political free speech,” she said in a statement.
Ms Patten, also the CEO of adult entertainment industry peak body, Eros Foundation, said "prudish politicians" had managed to get themselves elected to key power positions in the senate and state upper houses, creating a climate of “wowserism”.
“Community attitudes to sex and censorship have been shown over and over again by community opinion polling to be more relaxed than ever and yet in politics, the opposite is the case.
“When was the last time you heard a politician say something positive about sex?”
While the party’s main theme revolves around sex, she said it was in fact a “very broad church” that touches issues encompassing economy, social welfare, environment and even defence.
Among the party’s key policies are a uniform non-violent erotica rating for explicit adult material for all jurisdictions, a national sex education curriculum for secondary schools to prevent the sexualisation of children, and a referendum to create mandatory equal numbers of women in the senate and state upper houses.
It also wants Viagra and other drugs used to treat sexual dysfunction to be included on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, and to convene a royal commission into child sex abuse in the nation’s religious institutions.
The party aims to run candidates in the next senate election and in some state upper house elections over the next few years.
In order to register and stand for state upper house and senator seats a party requires to have 500 members, but Ms Patten said her party would have substantial backing from Australia’s 1,000 adult shops plus an estimated four million recurring customers.
The Australian Christian Lobby, as expected, was quick to denounce the party. Drawing an analogy with Pauline Hanson, the lobby group said the party should be put last on how-to-vote cards in upcoming elections.
“Pauline Hanson was rightly put last on how-to-vote cards because of her inappropriate views on race," the lobby’s managing director Jim Wallace said in a statement.
"How much more should the Australian Sex Party be treated in the same way for its inappropriate views about women?
“A party which gives solace to the purveyors of internet porn is not one worthy of consideration for preference deals in the mainstream political process.”
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