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Tuesday, 7 December 1971
Page: 4157

Dr CASS (Maribyrnong) - I do not want to debate the pros or cons of this matter but I want to make just one point. I believe that all honourable members feel frustration at the futility of debate in this House. Here is a case of something coming up which clearly should not be considered from a Party political point of view. It relates to one's innermost philosophy and it will almost certainly cross Party lines. We must make an intelligent decision and an intelligent appraisal of our attitudes to the situation, not just for the sake of ourselves but for the sake of future generations. That is what it amounts to. Once such legislation is enacted it is exceedingly difficult to repair it if it is wrong.

In this situation surely we have a case for acting on the sentiment that has arisen on both sides of the House - which the other House has acted upon - in appointing committees to look into these matters. Surely over the break which will occur between now and when the Parliament resumes in February, we could appoint a committee to look into the details, to seek expert advice and to consider carefully our approach to this problem. I do not want to say any more than that we should grasp the opportunity to teach ourselves a lesson and show ourselves bow we can be far more intelligent in our appraisal of prospective legislation. I urge the House to consider seriously the proposition and appoint a committee.

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