Monday, 30 December 2013

2013: The Year The Right-Wing Moralists Lost And The Left-Wing Moralists Won

Throughout 2012 the media fed us the, with hindsight, lies of opponents of marriage equality who assured us it'd be all but impossible to get marriage equality on to the statute books. 2013 revealed just how wrong they were and saw their campaign against marriage equality collapse under the weight of its own inconsistencies. 

Cardinal O'Brien had been a staunch, and often offensive, opponent of same-sex marriage (and pretty much any LGBT friendly policy). His downfall would've have been delicious if such joy was not tempered by sympathy for all those he hurt. But having one of the most visible opponents be brought down by scandal was not the only thing working against our opponents. 

There are some high-minded, intellectual debates one could have about the pros and cons of same-sex marriage. There are some interesting, thought-provoking issues that can be brought up by opponents of two people of same-sex getting married (see here for my review of the most compelling books from the opposition). Fortunately for those of us who favour such marriages, the opposition in this country didn't even touch on such issues. And their low-brow, scare-mongering served only to show how empty their arguments were. 

They thought they were on to a winning argument with the whole "teachers could be sacked for speaking their views" issue but were quickly undermined by the Catholic church threaten to sack pro-LGBT teachers. Their attempts to build bridges with LGBT anti-marriage radicals were misguided at best. And their briefings to Parliament were so full of strawman arguments and see-through attempts at misdirection that even I could rebut them

And when it came to the votes the Government's same-sex marriage bill passed. And it passed easily. Yes, the bill is flawed. But my how far we've come since this blogger started agitating for marriage equality in the UK.

The utter defeat of right-wing moralists would have been utterly sweet were it not for the continued rise of the joyless anti-sex left wingers who have slowly risen to fight the imaginary armies of the Patriarchy (and take out LGBT and other sexual minorities in the cross fire). 

These heteronormative campaigns against lad's mags, porn, sex workers and strip clubs have drawn some strong support and had some successes (such as with the Co-op and Tesco's meeting the demands of the Lose the Lad's Mags campaign halfway). And this is despite the campaigns being just as poorly thought out as the anti-LGBT rights campaigns earlier this year.

Next year... well... new challenges ahead. And huge risks. The EU elections and the Scottish independence campaign loom...

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