This one is a little different to the last few issues the constitutional convention has discussed, in that it is actually an important issue that deserves some constitutional discussion. This is going to be a short and sweet post, because there is very little I have to say.
My thoughts on same-sex marriage can be summed up pretty easily, and I will do so by looking at the objections to the concept one by one.
The religious objections hold no weight with me. The furthest I will go is to back churches that do not want to carry out such ceremonies, since separation of church and state, something this nation should aspire to implementing, works in both directions (though, I would not include adoption agencies with a religious “ethos” in that). Religions shouldn’t get to determine laws relating to marriage, not to mention that the Bible’s teaching on homosexuality were written several millennia ago. There is plenty of stuff the Bible tells us to do that even the most devout Christian would blanch at. It’s a total non-runner for me. “God hates fags”? Grow the hell up.
The adoption/parenting objections hold no weight with me. Every study of any repute whatsoever shows that children that grow up with two mothers or two fathers have no adverse aspects to their state of mind, development, happiness or future endeavours. It’s a point that has been made over and over and over again. God knows there are enough orphans who deserve the chance to be part of a functional family.
The procreation objections hold no weight with me. This is 2013 and the creation of children is not the be all and end all of any kind of recognised union. Giving LGBT couples the right to marry does not denigrate or tarnish the ability of heterosexual couples to create children in a more traditional fashion. Marriage is about financial issues, it’s about stability and it’s about love, just as much as it is about offspring. And, as stated, offspring come from many sources.
The “natural order” objections hold no weight with me. “Natural” is the buzzword many people go for in this discussion, and it’s a dodge, an attempt to simply paint same-sex unions as some sort of abnormal freakshow, ignoring the legal aspects of the issue and the fact that, well, opinions change over time. The vast majority of people on this island seem to see same-sex marriage as something perfectly “natural” after all. The really bigoted type seems to think that same-sex marriage will lead on to people marrying horses or something, this insane line of thinking based on little more that irrationality and a fear of the unknown, of anything not perceived to be normal. It deserves no consideration at all, because the thinking gone into it is so faulty.
The “Attack on the family” objection holds no weight with me. This is a claim that we are incapable of changing the constitution, since it says a lot of things about protecting “the family” and “the families” inherent rights, etc. This simply ties back in to earlier points. This is about changing the definition of marriage, which does not have to change the definition of family, which is something that is good and proper to address, over 70 years since the constitution was first written.
What else is there? I can’t see a single viable objection to same-sex marriage, none that are not rooted in hateful ideology or faulty science. I read some of the “anti” submissions on the conventions websites, and all I see is a torrent of idiocy, bigotry, and insanity. The only thing worth discussing here is whether marriage should be constitutionally defined and protected. It’s an important institution, so I think it should.
Is there a party that will, with a straight face, oppose this idea? All of the Dail parties support it. Last poll showed 73% of the population supporting it. The laws are in place. This is actually the definition of a “no-brainer”. Put it to a vote, and it will pass, in the convention, in the Dail, in the Seanad and in the country.
Gays, lesbians, transgendered, they aren’t a threat to society, to the country or to children. Welcome to modern Ireland.