Equal progress – same-sex equality slowly but surely

Published May 10, 2013 by Katy J Went
In the UK equal marriage is progressing, despite disbelief that a Tory government would ever bring it in and despite high UKIP local election vote share allegedly based on immigration, EU and equal marriage fears. The Queen’s Speech suggested the Tories would do something about EU and immigration to try and win back some of their traditional vote but that the Equal Marriage proposals would continue in spite of back bench opposition. Meanwhile, another US state, Delaware, along with Rhode Island, has progressed its ‘gay’ or equal marriage legislation, the 10th and 11th states to do so. Yesterday, an historic vote for the Midwest USA as Minnesota closely approved equal marriage progress, making it the 12th state, which, along with the District of Columbia means 25% of US states have or are approving same-sex marriage into law. 

Last month 3 more countries – France, New Zealand and Uruguay, joined 11 others that allow equal marriage. Meanwhile, 75 nations still criminalise homosexuality, some with the death penalty. In Britain and in Australia it is the Green Party that have made equal marriage a party policy.

The former Chief Constable of West Midlands Police, now Lord Dear, has scaremongered in the House of Lords that introducing same-sex marriage might “create such opposition to homosexuals in general that the climate of tolerance and acceptance in this country that we have all championed and supported and seen flourish over recent years could well be set back by decades.” What utter rubbish, has equal marriage in over a dozen countries, back as far as 2001 in the Netherlands, resulted in increased homophobia? 

Lord Dear also related how 3 days before the last general election, Cameron said he’d no plans to introduce same-sex marriage. This private comment conflicts with a more public profession by Cameron to at least consider it. A month earlier Cameron had already written on PinkNews that he was open to changing the law on marriage to “further to guarantee equality.”, and that the Conservative party had committed to consider the case for same-sex marriage in its equality manifesto. 

Surely the avalanche effect of snowballing acceptance these last 12 years will eventually see EU and US wide acceptance of equal marriage, LGBT rights and overall society’s misplaced fears proven unfounded. Extremists will remain a vociferous minority, but just as nobody is calling for the disenfranchising of women voters or the reintroduction of slavery, they too will one day fall silent.

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