The Day Love Won in Australia

Yesterday the results of a nation wide vote for Same sex marriage came in and the result was that the majority of participants who voted in the plebiscite believe that YES, gay people should be allowed to be married. Over 70% votes yes in the same sex marriage vote which clearly rules people who want to marry the love of their life, can now even if they are of the same sex. 

I don’t claim to be an expert in the field but I do care about the outcome for personal reasons. Seeing what my step-sister has had to endure is saddening. She and her wife went overseas to Canada when they first got married so they could legally do so. Even if the country they were married in wasn’t their own, they wanted their marriage recognized as any committed married couple would but that’s how committed they were to each other and to getting married. I admire that about them and their relationship and always felt it was unfair that they couldn’t get legally married in their home country of Australia. They are married happily ten or so years down the track and now have 2 beautiful children. Thanks to the new laws my nephew and niece will grow up with married parents who most importantly, will be accepted by society. For those and many other reasons I am glad their marriage can now be upheld in our country. 

I am only saddened by the discussion about other amendments to the marriage bill that threaten to take away from the main victory here. There is laws that have been changed in relation to discrimination along with the marriage laws. And it seems that the religious right wing has themselves had a win in that they can decide to withhold services to a gay couple if it goes against their religious beliefs or if they don’t agree with the LGBTI lifestyles in general. I hope that common sense will prevail and these acts won’t be amended to allow for blatant discrimination, but only to allow for same-sex marriage to be legalized. As it should be for loving, committed couples who have likely had to live with such discrimination their entire lives. Many have had to endure other terrible adversity and judgement or bullying and even violence in a community that, until now hasn’t fully accepted them or acknowledged them for who they are in a respectful and dignified manner. Hopefully this will now change and the stigma can be dropped allowing many people to finally feel accepted and comfortable being themselves. It’s sad we had to have the vote to begin with, the answer seemed simple to me but obviously some were not in agreement. 

Now the vote is in it will be a short wait for the same sex marriage laws to be put in place. It was reported that it should happen by Christmas time, possibly on Christmas Eve. 

The news is great for many Australians who are in same sex relationships and the people who, like myself, support them. Congratulations to those who voted Yes and especially to those who this change will affect directly. Yesterday was the day that love won in Australia.