Thursday, 1 March 2012

Campaign For Marriage Is Doing Far Better Than They Should Be

So the Coalition Against, sorry, For Marriage's campaign is doing well. Oh, I'm not too worried that they are about to tip the balance against the Government's civil marriage equality plans. But they are doing far better than they should be.

Their petition against marriage equality has, at the time of writing, just under 65,000 signatures. The campaign for equal marriage has just over 10% of that number signing up. They've also got vocal supporters who are much more able to get press coverage of their authoritarian views. Be it Ann Widdecombe suggesting marriage equality is being foisted on an unwilling populace, or Peter Bone who thinks the idea is "completely nuts", they are the ones getting all the attention. They even have Labour MPs like Joe Benton and Jim Dobbin signing their petition (Gordon Brown and Jack Straw next perhaps?).

Thanks to the neutering of the debate due to the introduction of civil partnerships, we don't have supporters in the public eye who are even half as devoted to marriage equality as their opposite numbers are devoted to defeating it. It's not an issue that get's the LGBT friendly types excited. We don't have someone of Lady Gaga's stature in popular culture calling for it. We don't have politicians doing more than offering their support. We don't have champions willing to get dirty for it. The best we have, and I shake my head as I type this, is Ben Summerskill! The only truly pro-marriage equality story to make the big time news wise was Lynne Featherstone's recent show of support, and that's only because she's a Minister (the story getting into the news that is, her support isn't questioned!). Peter Tatchell, hero that he is, isn't forgotten but the media tend to ignore him unless he is 1) violently attacked or 2) arrested and I hope he doesn't need to do either of those two things in the name of marriage equality in the UK!

Even worse, we still have the radical anti-marriage folks (who I have sympathy with but they want to BAN marriage where as I want to make it a private matter) playing right into the campaigns evil plans! Just check out Julie Bindel, she of transphobic fame, getting all upset at the time wasted on marriage equality. She might think it's wasted time, she doesn't need to campaign for it, but for some of us it's about being able to marry the one we love! I know, romance is dead and all that...

Who is going to be to marriage equality what Ben Cohen and Gareth Roberts have been to the campaign against homophobia in sport? We need a hero!

If you feel benevolent and particularly generous, this writer always appreciates things bought for him from his wishlist

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