Same-Sex Marriage Referendum: One Day Out


I could try a number of things here. Another link dump for the past 24 hours worth of news. An appeal to emotional. An appeal to rationality.

All of those things can be found throughout the internet and social media if one has a mind to look for them, so I’ll keep my closing thoughts on this as brief as is practicable. Anyone interested in more can look back over my posts on the topic.

To the unregistered and the non-voter, I can only ask you to close the window and move on. You aren’t even worth the energy to scold right now.

To the committed “No” voter, I can only ask you to close the window, move on, and it’s probably best if you don’t come back.

To everyone else, that last section of genuine undecideds, I have more to say.

I discovered a “No” leaflet left propped against my door yesterday morning. This was at around 6.20, so whoever left it there was either operating very late at night, or very early in the morning.

The leaflet was full of the usual. Half-baked misinformation, twisting of facts, appeals to non-pertinent issues and abhorrent in its deeper message. Surrogacy and adoption and the ECHR and teaching in schools, all proven false or faulty. It does not surprise me that whoever left at my door did so at an hour when the chance of having to actually speak to the people he was trying to win over was negligible: because who, in good conscience, would stand over such a leaflet if put under scrutiny?

The “No” side would I suppose, the side that have run a campaign based on fear, panic, confusion and regressive ideology, all masked by an outer shell of faux-reasonableness and “I don’t have problems with gay people but….”. They have managed to change minds. They have, beyond all intrusions of reality, managed to cultivate a perception that they are a bullied minority. With the aid of a willing media, they have injected poisonous and factious rhetoric into this debate, in an at-all-costs style of campaign.

Please, don’t be one of those people. Don’t get sucked in by their message. Because, as I pointed out here and here, the key tenants of the “No” vote message simply do not stand up under any serious observation.

Meanwhile, the reasons for voting “Yes”, clear, simple and with the full force of the law and moral right on their side, are undeniable and unequivocal. For the rights of all Irish citizens to be equal. For people to not have to hide their sexual orientation. For people in love to be in a position to enjoy all of the rights that others do in this country. It is about those things, and nothing else.

48 hours from time of posting, we should know whether the constitution will be changed. I remain confident that it will, though, in any campaign like this, the confidence is tinged with that ever-present sense of danger. We need the vote, the young, the old, the urbanite and the rural dweller, to get out tomorrow and make it happen. If the turnout is high enough, you can put a fork in it. If you are still undecided and seeking an answer, I have only one for you: be a part of significant, worthy and righteous change in our country. Reject fear. Reject “tradition”. Reject lies. And look back with pride later.

To the committed “Yes” voters, I offer my praise, my appreciation, my support and my urging to take that final step tomorrow, and cast one of the most significant ballots of your lives. A “No” poster outside Trinity College that I pass every day, that has had another poster above it slip down and obscure some of the message, is a truthful appraisal of what “No” wants from the LGBT community and its supporters: “BE SILENCED – VOTE NO”.

But you don’t have to be silent any more. You have a voice. And in conjunction with millions of others, it can roar tomorrow.

Vote Yes. Please.

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