Anyone who has known me for a long time, knows that I’ve been passionate about marriage equality for a long time. When my younger son got married in 2000, it struck me how unfair it was that he could marry so easily because he was marrying a woman and my older son, who had been with his partner for more years, could not marry. That was my light bulb moment and became a passionate advocate for marriage equality.
One of the ways I advocated was working as a volunteer on the No on 8 campaign during the 2008 election. I was devastated when it passed and I rejoiced when it was finally overturned by the Supreme Court. I rejoiced again when the Supreme Court declared marriage equality in every state.
In today’s political climate, I’m beginning to worry again about my son having equal rights. In spite of being married, he can be fired for being gay in too many states. He can be refused service just because he is gay. He’s lucky – he lives in a community, if not a state, that respects him and his husband and he has had no problems in the southern state. He works for a company that is an ardent supporter of equality for the LGBTQ community and everyone who represents any of those letters.
I have a Facebook group providing support for parents of LGBTQ kids. Some of our parents live in Australia where marriage equality is a heated topic of discussion.
I don’t understand how things work in Australia, so forgive me if I get this wrong. The way I understand it, there is a non-binding mail in “vote” happening. Some say it’s really no more than a poll conducted by mail in ballot. It’s designed to perhaps measure the support for marriage equality. Since it is not a vote, there appears to be no restrictions on the type of advertising allowed. What I’ve heard of remind me so much of the lies and falsehoods told during the Prop 8 campaign here in California.
My hope is that people are a lot more savvy and open-minded today than they were in 2008. It appears that way more young people are mailing in their ballots and they are largely in favor of marriage equality. Even though this vote has no weight, it will still be good to see an overwhelming support for marriage equality in Australia. Maybe then the government will do what it’s supposed to do – grant equal rights to all their citizens. Love is love, after all.