Article Title:Wedding Belles: Hating the hate
Category:True Stories
Author or Credit:Jacqui Stanford
Published on:30th July 2012 - 02:07 pm
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Story ID:12061
Text:It’s been an emotional and draining ride for reporter Jacqui Stanford, covering the twists and turns since Louisa Wall’s marriage equality bill was pulled. It’s not so much political as personal for her: she is planning her civil union, you see. She rants here … At my desk where I write for is a pile of invitations my fiancée Dee and I have lovingly crafted, which read “Celebration of Love”. Because that’s what our civil union in January will be, a celebration of our love. It’s been strange to sit next to these beautiful invitations and read and report on the words of people in this country who are utterly hateful and fearful their lives will somehow be destroyed if Dee and I join hands in a full first-class citizen wedding ceremony. It has made me feel utterly ill, not because I give a toss what they think of the incredible love I have in my life – but simply that they could be so detestable, and really, ignorant. Never mind their bullet points about why their unions are so much better. Such claims are just plain dumb. Love is love. How can anyone not understand that fundamental of humanness? I explained the reasons Dee and I are getting hitched in an earlier piece, and am not going to go back over them, except to say that we love each other like crazy and are excitedly building a life together. So as we are engaged and all, when Louisa’s Bill was pulled, we excitedly debated whether, if by any chance it passed and came into effect by January 19th, we would have a full marriage ceremony – or whether we will ‘upgrade’ if it passes later. Our decision was simple. It was about semantics: we want to legally be able to call each other ‘wife’, not the laboriously unromantic ‘civil union partner’. A simpler decision than picking out serviette colours! And probably as simple as some of the minds behind these campaigns to “protect” marriage from the evil likes of Dee and me (who really, are pretty boringly well behaved). Why are these people so threatened? If they care so much, why are they not trying to protect marriage from the many straight people all over the globe who incessantly abuse it? Shotgun weddings, quickie divorces and sham marriages are everywhere. Where are the websites rallying against those? At the crux of all of the sentiment is surely just plain old homophobia. That’s the only possible reason these people can be so afraid of us. And the reason that when it comes down to it most of the hate is directed at gay men, rather than lesbians - the only reason Colin two-first-names Craig can go on about two men raising a child together like he is going to catch something by even mentioning it. You wonder why our communities are so much more likely to suffer from depression, self-harm, alcohol and drug abuse – with the type of hate that so clear lies at the belly of our community -it’s hard not to let any of it hit you in the guts. Don’t these people realise that we already have a shit enough time of it without all this horrible sentiment? That the gay babies so many straight people keep making are still growing up and being hated upon? It’s not very Christ-like is it? I don’t recall him attacking gay people in the street during my many readings and re-readings of the Bible as a religiously-raised kid! These people need to realise that by being so hateful to us, they are allowing people with small minds and ready fists the room to think it’s ok to abuse and attack us … and I am not being dramatic here – my best friend and the future father of my kids was attacked a few years ago in gay bashing and is still suffering the side-effects of the brain damage they caused. It happens. And spouting the type of hate that has been blasted forth during this marriage debate so far really doesn’t help. And yes, ‘future father of my kids’ – shocking isn’t it!? It must be big news for those who claim gay people can’t have kids together. Um … yes we can … and yes we do. Craig, Colin, or whatever his name is has even conceded under a grilling from ZB’s Susan Wood that yeah, actually two parents, straight or gay, are probably better than none. My kids will be pretty lucky then huh – they will have two mums, two dads, nearly four full sets of grandparents – and more aunties, uncles, cousins and ‘family’ than a small tribe! And it’s when I kind of giggle at the stupidity of all the haters, and think about my family to be, I realise as our wedding song goes – we are the lucky ones. Our lives are so full of love. When I look at my invitations I think stuff the dinosaurs: they can marry their own giant self-righteous egos for all I care. I am going to marry the girl I love. It will not impact their silly, small lives one tiny bit. And it’s not intelligent to pretend it will.     Jacqui Stanford - 30th July 2012
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