This blog is mostly about films, and TV, and my love of stories in general, but occasionally there are important things outside of the media I want to discuss, and this is one of them.
I live in Australia and at the moment my country is holding a postal plebiscite on whether the Australian Constitution should be changed to recognise same-sex marriage. This survey is being run by the same people that screwed up the national census about a year ago, and won’t bind the Australian government to pass marriage equality. It’s dumb, but unfortunately, it’s the only way my country is likely to get something that is so important to so many people.
Full disclosure, I’m not gay or bi, but this is still incredibly, incredibly important to me. It’s at least partially because my childhood best friends are gay, and got married last year. I was so proud to be able to stand beside them as their bridesmaid and sign their Partners for Life certificate. But it’s not enough. Their relationship still isn’t considered equal in the eyes of the government. They will still have to fight as they have all their lives to remain equal, to be recognised as each other’s most important family member unless we do something about it.
It’s also partially important to me because of my future children, nieces, nephews and maybe even grandkids. I have no way of knowing their sexuality or gender before they are born or grow, or before they are ready to tell me. I want them to have all their options open. I want them to be able to be there for their partner should the worst happen and one of them end up in hospital. I want their partner to be able to be the first point to call if something goes horribly wrong. I want their partner to be an equal part of my life, no matter what their gender.
But it’s more than that, marriage equality is most important to me as a human who wants equal rights for all. I don’t want any more children crying in a corner for fear of coming out to their family. I don’t want any more partners left out of the loop by officials because their relationship isn’t recognised in the eyes of the state. I don’t want to sit by while the LGBTQIA+ community is treated as less than everyone else. I want to stand up and fight for their rights because it is overwhelmingly the right thing to do.
I pledge to fight for a yes vote until the last second of the vote being counted.
I pledge to continue fighting for equal rights for EVERYONE in the LGBTQIA+ community after this plebiscite is finished.
I pledge to support anyone who needs it no matter what the outcome of this vote.
Please, please, please Australia, take time to think about the people this most effects. It’s not about religious freedoms, freedom of speech or what we teach in schools. It’s about basic human decency. Let’s show the world that Australia is not a country filled with bigots, but rather a place where human rights are honoured. It’s only a first step, but an important one.
Please vote yes.
All images were taken at the Canberra Marriage Equality rally on the 22 of October.