I am in a heterosexual relationship, engaged to be married just 103 days from now. I have been able to socialise publicly with a boyfriend, become Facebook official, get engaged, book a wedding celebrant, file Intention To Marry documents, and soon – be legally married – without any issues whatsoever.
Yet in 2017, two people of the same gender cannot be legally recognised by the Australian Government. Why? Because we still cannot separate religion and the law. And THAT’S the issue here.
I become increasingly upset with every day this debate goes on. It’s not even my rights or personal value that are being discriminated against. Enough is enough. The upcoming postal vote is a bullshit approach to a simple problem, not to mention a huge waste of money, but that’s what we’ve got for now.
I spend a lot of time mulling over the ridiculous arguments put forward as to why same sex marriage (SSM) should not be legalised. For every opinion you give me for voting no, I can tell you why that opinion just doesn’t have a leg to stand on.
ARGUMENT: Same-sex relationships are against God’s law
God’s law and state/federal law are not the same thing. If you wish to live your life by God’s law, then that’s fine! But you cannot impose YOUR religious beliefs on others, let along an entire country. If so, then tattoos, eating pork, and divorce should also be illegal. I suggest you start reading some legislation and tell me where else our state/federal law doesn’t match up with your holy book. Make a list, and start protesting those, too.
Let’s take a hypothetical, and pretend that working on the Sabbath is CURRENTLY ILLEGAL in Australia. People are protesting because they’re not part of your religion, and believe they should be allowed to work on any day of the week. Would you be voting NO to this change in legislation?
ARGUMENT: Marriage is between a man and a woman
The definition of marriage differs across cultures and countries around the world.
Polygamy is common in West Africa and many Arab nations. Arranged child marriage is still common in South Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. Monogomy is most common in most modernised Western countries, where SSM is legal in MANY of these already.
The Bible does not contain a definition of marriage. It tells of Solomon having 700 wives and 300 concubines, and even gives instruction on taking multiple wives. Simply having sex with a woman, even in cases of rape, meant that she was then considered to be married to you.
Maybe the Bible doesn’t tell a story of John marrying Jack, or Sally eating out Sarah, but you can’t argue a point based on something that your holy book doesn’t talk about.
ARGUMENT: A child needs both a mum and a dad
Well, besides having nothing to do with SSM, this is untrue. There are no scientifically-supported studies showing that a child requires both a mum and dad figure to grow up as capable as children from hetero relationships. I can introduce you to a dozen children from same-sex partnerships that are highly intelligent, creative, and successful.
What about single parents? Would you say to a poor single mum or dad’s face that you don’t think their child is in an appropriate family setting?
Are you aware that same sex couples currently parent children all around the country? Legalising SSM doesn’t mean that same-sex couples can now magically adopt or have children – they already are.
ARGUMENT: It’s not natural
Homosexuality is present in over 500 species. Homophobia is present in only one.
If you’re attracted to the same sex, if a man turns you on, or if you prefer the intimacy of a woman, then that’s natural.
You know what else people used to think wasn’t natural? Interracial marriage.
ARGUMENT: Our religion/God/church won’t recognise the union, so why bother making it legal?
The union I am having with my fiance 103 days from now will have no religious context whatsoever. Marriage is already a legal proceeding, it’s only when you bring it into the church or a religious place that it becomes a religious ceremony. It is simply the wording of the Australian definition of marriage that is stopping same-sex couples from uniting in the eyes of the law. Marriage in Australia is a LEGAL PROCESS, NOT a religious one.
People are married outside of the church, without a priest or reverent, every single day.
We want to bother making it legal so that same-sex couples are treated equally to hetero-relationships. So that in times of crisis, they can visit their partner in hospital, access life insurance, and gain a little more respect at the very least.
ARGUMENT: It will shove homosexuality in my face and the faces of our children
No, it won’t. Same-sex couples will continue to go about their daily activities as usual, but they will now just be treated as equals in the eyes of the law! If anything is being shoved down anybody’s throat, it’s your judgmental religion.
Have any more arguments? Pop them below.
It is unfair and unconstitutional to force an entire country to live by what your religion says is right or wrong.
Marriage is a LEGAL construct that unites two people as one, recognising their union so that they can be treated EQUALLY to everybody else in a committed relationship. It is not religious property.
Please, vote YES. Love is love.
For the postal vote, you have until August 24 to enrol to vote, if you have not already, or update your details if they have changed since the last election. The ABS will run the process with ballot papers going to every enrolled Australian from next month, to be returned by November 7 and a result on November 25.