Here’s what I hate about the idea of a plebiscite on same-sex marriage, in order of how much I hate it:
1. The prospect of a ‘no’ vote campaign that fundamentally rests on the idea that gay people do not deserve the same legal or human rights in Australia as heterosexual people.
2. The thought that LGBTI Australians will have to endure a government funded campaign by homophobes masquerading as ‘traditionalists’ who will use words like “unnatural” and “won’t someone think of the children” to stoke fear and hatred in our community.
3. The idea that vulnerable LGBTI young Australians, many of whom have not publicly disclosed their sexuality due to anxiety around acceptance, discrimination and bigotry will be exposed to a (government funded) campaign that says they’re not worthy of the same rights as their straight peers.
4. Being told I must 'respect' those who support and promote the 'no' campaign. I refuse to do this because denying someone else the right to do what you have the right to do, based on their sexuality is abhorrent to me. And not a position worthy of respect. Just as I would not have respected all those who argued against Indigenous Australians being given the right to vote in 1962. Or those who argued against women being given the right to vote in 1902. No respect. None. Less than none. Negative respect. Revulsion.
5. Spending $160m AT LEAST on a glorified opinion poll with a fancy name. A plebiscite is non-binding. Coalition members have already said they will ignore it if the result doesn't conform to their (homophobic) beliefs.
On Mamamia Out Loud: why are we using these people's lives as political football?
6. Having to endure people like Tony Abbott and others defend their desire to discriminate against LGBTI Australians (as he did yesterday and has done repeatedly) with the use of the term "preserve traditional marriage" as if marriage is a static thing that has not evolved along with societal attitudes. Would those traditionalists like to return to the traditional definition of marriage where husbands could legally rape their wives? Where people of different races couldn't marry? How about where women had no legal or financial rights when she married and became the 'property' of her husband? THOSE WERE THE TRADITIONAL GOOD OL' DAYS, EH?