RELIGION, politics, feminism, human rights: they’re all topics that generate quite a bit of argy-bargy both in real-world conversations and online.
For the most part, I appreciate them for what they are: the ability to peek at someone else’s worldview as my own continues to evolve.
But there is one opinion or viewpoint in this world that I really, genuinely struggle to understand.
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Perhaps it’s because I’m not religious, so I’ve never felt that unique sense of personal superiority disguised as religious belief that some seem to own with such ease. I’m not sure.
The issue that I’m referring to is gay marriage. Or, as I hope it’s soon known as, marriage.
It’s astonishing to me that, in the year 2015, homosexual couples still don’t have the legal right to marry the love of their life.
What’s more astonishing is the lengths people will go to ensure this doesn’t change.
People like Nick and Sarah Jenson. For some inexplicable reason, this Canberra couple have publicly vowed to get a divorce and end their “sacred” 10-year union, if Australia allows same-sex couples to legally marry.
“My wife and I, as a matter of conscience, refuse to recognise the government’s regulation of marriage if its definition includes the solemnisation of same sex couples,” says Nick.
His reasoning? The same old clichés about kids and polygamy.
“Once you say that marriage is detached from children, [that it’s] just about love, then when three people come to the state and say ‘well we’re all in love’, then the state has no grounds, except unjust discrimination, to say why they can’t get married,” he says.
If marriage is primarily about kids as Nick suggests, then perhaps we shouldn’t allow heterosexual couples to marry if they don’t intend on having children? I mean, to do so would be a slight against “our most sacred institution”, wouldn’t it?
I’m passionate about this and it’s because it’s not just the legal act of marriage that is important, but all of the rights and responsibilities that go with it.
Things like the ability to stand by your spouse as they receive medical treatment.
When I hear a story – such as this one, about a woman who’s wife was not allowed to visit her in hospital, and instead had to get third-hand updates about her wife’s pregnancy complications and the loss of her baby – my brain hurts from the injustice of it all.
Why should I have more rights than them?
Why do Nick and Sarah deserve these rights, but a couple called Britt and Sarah don’t?
If you stand on the other side of the fence to me on this one, I’d love to hear your thoughts.
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