Project 365 – 14th August 2010

Posted: August 14, 2010 in Project 365
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Day 195 – In Support of Gay Marriage

Had a busy day today, study in the morning, protest march at Town Hall at lunch, photos of Sydney Uni AFL’s Old Boys Day in the evening followed by the SWAFL Trivia night (which our table won!!).

Anyway for my 365 photo (s) for the day I picked some from the protest march. I still find it unbelievable that in a country like Australia, where the majority of people support same-sex marriage that the 2 main political parties both take the stance that they would not bring in legislation to allow gay people to marry. Julia Gillard believes now isn’t the time based on “where we’re at as a community now”, well then Julia when is the right time? Was the time right for women’s rights or the rights of the black people in the US? Was it ok that before the time was ‘right’ people were being lynched, murdered or treated as second-class citizens? I read a great quote from Martin Luther King recently:

“We are now faced with the fact, my friends, that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history, there is such a thing as being too late. Procrastination is still the thief of time. Life often leaves us standing bare, naked, and dejected with a lost opportunity. The tide in the affairs of men does not remain at flood — it ebbs. We may cry out desperately for time to pause in her passage, but time is adamant to every plea and rushes on. Over the bleached bones and jumbled residues of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic words, “Too late.” There is an invisible book of life that faithfully records our vigilance or our neglect. If we do not act, we shall surely be dragged down the long, dark, and shameful corridors of time reserved for those who possess power without compassion, might without morality, and strength without sight.”

There are some then who believe that marriage shouldn’t be allowed because religious leaders disagree with it. They think that gay people getting married will see moral society grinding to a halt or that it needs to be kept as just a religious sacrament. But which religion? The state recognises marriages of all religions, marriages involving atheists, marriages between people who have broken the law, murderers and child abusers in jail can get married but gay people still can’t. The institution of marriage even outdates most traditional religions, going back to Ancient Mesopotamia.

The part of the election campaign I had to laugh at though was Wendy Francis, who did her party no favours with an ill-thought twitter message after a debate involving gay marriage on one of the breakfast TV programmes. This is actually what she said:

“Legitimising gay marriage is like legalising child abuse” Firstly what a load of unintelligible crap from someone who is actually RUNNING FOR GOVERNMENT! Secondly what she isn’t seeing, and what a lot of other people don’t see is that children are already in these families, whether it’s children from previous relationships, by circumstance or planned. These families exist, and the lack of a formal structure, not to mind adoption rights to same-sex partners, make the children’s life considerably poorer than it could be. For example anyone can have a child in Australia (or any other country), anyone can have a same-sex relationship (even as Wendy says ‘all have a right to be homosexual), but if the paternal half of the couple dies then the other partner, who, for all intent and purposes has been a parent to the child for all of its life, then doesn’t have any rights to the child. It just doesn’t make sense.

Martin Luther King was right, there is such a thing as being “too late”. It’s too late for parents and children who are being affected by this now, and the worst thing is that it, in no way, affects the lives of those who oppose gay marriage. Not one little bit. They’ll never have to even contemplate what it would be like not to be able to have their relationship recognised in law, not to be able to be a legal parent to children they already are parents to, they’ll never be discriminated against or have to go through what gay people have to go through. Secular people, it can be argued are entitled to their views based on their individual reasoning of the facts, but religious people, of all dominations, are supposed to be compassionate and ‘good’ people by virtue that they follow a religion. Quite often they are the most hateful of all, judging something they don’t understand and uncaring regarding the pain they cause. The Phelps family in America think they’re going to Heaven? Don’t make me laugh! The problem is that people like them exist in every country, including a 60 year old woman I saw on this march, with a look of pure venom on her face, telling a nearby guy with a picket to ‘go take a bath’ that he was disgusting. And Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott are unashamedly basing policy on the fear of loosing their vote.


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