Tell Julia you support marriage equality

17 Nov

On Tuesday I received the following email from Alex Greenwich, National Convener of Australian Marriage Equality. I urge everyone to follow the three easy steps below and tell Julia you support marriage equality.

TELL JULIA YOU SUPPORT MARRIAGE EQUALITY

Today the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, said that same-sex couples should be denied the opportunity to celebrate the meaning of marriage:

I support maintaining the Marriage Act in its current form and the government will not move legislation to change it.  My position flows from my strong conviction that the institution of marriage has come to have a particular meaning and standing in our culture and nation and that should continue unchanged.” Prime Minister Julia Gillard

This is despite most Labor State Conferences and State Leaders joining the majority of Australians who believe in equality.  We have been contacted by many supporters within Labor who will keep fighting for equality and are hopeful that a change to the ALP National Platform in support of marriage equality will still happen. 

There are three easy ways you can tell Julia Gillard that she is wrong:

Contact her office directly by clicking here

Sign the GetUP petition to be sent to Labor’s National Conference

Make a contribution to the campaign that is fighting to deliver equality

Thank you for the difference you are making.

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Two Fridays ago on 4 November submissions were due to the Queensland Government in relation to Deputy Premier Andrew Fraser’s historic Civil Partnership Bill.

Here is my wife’s submission:

I recently celebrated my second wedding anniversary. My wife and I were married in Vancouver, Canada in 2009. We’re both Australians and were in Vancouver on a work visa. We’d been there 3 months before deciding to come home, but before we did we knew we wanted to take the opportunity to have a legally recognised wedding. I married my wife in a free public space, in a foreign country, in front of 12 friends and in an outfit that cost $50. We got married because we wanted to commit to each other in a place that saw us as equal to every other couple. The only difference to the vows we know in Australia and those we took in Canada were the last few words. The celebrant said, “I now pronounce you married.” It was that simple. Our Canadian marriage certificate now takes pride of place in our living room.

When we tell people we’re married we have to deal with the humiliating questions that follow about the validity of our marriage. People say, “oh, does that marriage certificate count here?” and we have to say, “no“. We’ve been happily married for two years and my wife is 16 weeks pregnant. We own a home together, love each other, take care of each other and are working hard to create a safe, happy environment to raise a family in. But in our minds families should be able to have two parents who are legally bound to each other. Our kids should be able to come into this world knowing their parents have the right to commit to each other like all other parents do. And just like those other parents, no one should have the right to tell them which other consenting adult they can or can’t commit to.

The Labor government has gone a long way for equality and while I am 100% in favour of the Civil Partnerships Bill in Queensland, nothing but full equal marriage rights is acceptable in Australia.

To get divorced either my wife or I would need to live in Canada for a year, become a permanent resident and then apply for divorce. We got married knowing there was no ‘out’. If that’s not commitment deserving of a little piece of paper with a Queensland stamp on it, I don’t know what is.

Suzanne Michaels

You could write something similarly honest and amazing to the Prime Minister by using the above link to contact her office.

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Lastly, here is a link to an article written in the Brisbane Times on 15 November. The article outlines the concerns of Independent MP Chris Foley who was worried Christians were “often portrayed as being hateful or spiteful towards gay people”. He apparently called for feedback from other faith groups – including Islamic, Buddhist, Hindu and Sikh communities. All groups declined to comment (providing no backup to Mr Foley) except for the President of the Buddhist Council of Queensland and the President of the Federation of Buddhist Councils who said: “I think our community generally have a view that it’s live and let live and I can’t for the life of me think of why people would object to it.”

My wife suddenly wants to be Buddhist.

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