Partyroom Politics

Marriage Equality is the subject for today in the party rooms. They will, hopefully, be discussing Dean Smith’s private member’s bill and, hopefully, they will approve it for discussion and a vote in parliament.

The government is crazy if they think they can survive NOT putting this forward. It has gone on long enough, over 20 bills have been put forward and rejected over the last 10 or so years. This is an inevitability they must face. They can either be the party that lead the way to marriage equality in Australia, or they can get out of the way at the next election.

For those who worry about the religious exemptions in the bill fear not for two reason:

  1. The gays are just being added to a long list of exemptions that already exist for clergy. They currently are exempt from having to marry people who have differing faiths, from themselves or from each other, divorcees, and even people they don’t think should be married. They can currently just say, nope, I don’t think you’re right for each other, I’m not going to be the one to marry you. So we gays are just being added to a list that already exists, they aren’t making a new one.
  2. The churches will come around, and likely quite quickly. Their numbers are falling, the are bolstering them with rhetoric about the evils of the gays and their abhorrent lifestyle “choice”. But they are fighting a losing battle. Sure the Biebs and other music, and the brainwashing is bringing folks to Hillsong. But that can’t save the dying ideology that is structured religion.

    We know the churches will come around because they need the money and because we have historic precedent… black people and the church. The church was a driver behind segregation and preventing inter-racial marriage, but these days it’s mostly nothing to them. They embrace black culture and in the US the African American community have weird, in my opinion, embraced the church… the teachings of which once and continues to drive the KKK and other white supremacists.

So let’s not fear the religious exemptions as they exist in the bill. Let’s get married and let the church sort itself out. We don’t need them any more now than we did yesterday.

It’s time to join the new world of liberty and equality for all.

Still Not Us

Still not us… :-/

Malta, a country predominantly religious with around 88% of the population declaring themselves of some Catholic persuasion, passed Marriage Equality via a parliamentary vote. Just as Germany did recently, just as we COULD do now.

In Malta the vote went ahead and only had a single vote against, the naysayer cited his conscious religious objection, as a free vote in Australian parliament would allow our MPs to do too.

It really is time Australia… let’s do it.

barry-manilow-2000x1333

Barry is Gay!

Colour me surprised! Barry Manilow has come out as gay!

On a serious note though… I’m glad he has had love for the past 40 years, and I’m even more glad he can now live his truth and be seen in public with his partner and not just “his manager”.

I know some will say “who cares?”, “why is this our business?” etc and to those I say “I care”, and “It’s nobody’s ‘business’.” but I’m glad Barry Manilow has shed the burden of his ‘secret’ that he has kept and clearly something that has played on his mind, consuming his thoughts.

If you’re keeping up with the kids of today none of them care if a music star is gay… look at the likes of Troye Sivan 4.4 million followers on YouTube, very out, and still getting adoring messages from female fans day in and day out.

I’m left still feeling that all the guys who play in elite sports and are almost forced by society to remain in the closet, faking relationships or worse, putting themselves and the ladies they date through a lie to protect their reputation, scared to live their truth.

In a country where debates about marriage equality are still a thing and where MPs think and publicly state that you can “pray the gay away” (paraphrasing Abetz), it’s no wonder we have no elite AFL, Rugby League or Rugby Union players out and proud.

May those with weird thoughts leave the public arena soon and take those ideas with them and may the younger generations live their truths from younger ages.

While I don’t spend a lot of time wondering what my life may have been like had I been brave enough to come out at school, I’m glad kids these days are doing so. Everything that happened in my life has lead to where I am now, and I’m very happy with my lot in life, but there sure was some heartache there in my youth.

So to wrap up, congrats Barry… you be you!

Safe Schools Program needs to stay!

If the “right” side of politics won’t listen to we the gays about Safe Schools and how awesome it might have been to have something like that when we were there, maybe they’ll listen to the mother of a gay who’s not here now to speak for himself:

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My name is Sheryl Moore, and I’m the mother of A.J. Betts. A.J. made a statement that was very poignant.

He said, “Mom, I just can’t go to this school anymore where people are hurting my feelings and making me cry every day because I’m gay.” And I said, “A.J., do you want me to pull you out of that school? Because I’ll do it in a heartbeat. I’ll send you to another school where you feel more comfortable.”

And he said “No, Mom. I’m pretty sure it’s not okay to be gay anywhere.”

And I said, “You know what, buddy? I don’t disagree with you.”

And he said, “I’m just gonna do my time and be done with my senior year and graduate and go on to college where people are more accepting.” And I said, “I think that’s a great idea, A.J.”

And those were the last words my son said to me before he took his life.

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Taken from the eighth episode of “American Crime” season two where she appeared in a piece to camera.