Western Australia's lower house has now passed legislation to legalise therapeutic cloning, in line with federal legislation that has already been mirrored in Victoria and New South Wales.
Once again, the Catholic Church oppposed this legislation, with the Archbishop of Perth threatening Catholic MPs if they voted in its favour. What is especially nauseating about this whole protracted process of getting some reasonable legislative reforms in Australia is the continued attempt by religious leaders to tear down any separation of church and state. They continue their efforts to impose a specifically religious - and barbaric - morality on the rest of us by means of the coercive power of the state. Yet again, it must be said: bishops and priests have no moral or intellectual authority, and their views deserve no credence in the formulation of public policy. We've given their medieval view of the world too much respect in the past, and it's about time we stopped. They can believe what they want, but there is no reason to defer to them when they meddle in the public sphere.