Letter to Australian Senators re: Marriage Act Amendment Bill

14 Sep

This bill will be voted on in the Australian Federal Government Senate as soon as next week. I emailed the undecided senators to give them my side of the story:

Dear Senator,
I write this entreaty from New York, USA, where I have come with my
partner of six years to be legally married. We are ordinarily
residents of Sydney. I am a solicitor and my wife is an academic.
Our late summer wedding day was beautiful – a few close friends and my
immediate family were able to make the trip over, to witness the
ceremony in Central Park.
As we wandered around the park afterwards having photographs taken,
many many total strangers congratulated us on our special day – so many that we just couldn’t believe our ears! It became clear to us
just how proud the New Yorkers are that they can now offer this right
to same sex couples from all over the world. They are so proud that
they can be progressive and courageous and magnanimous, conferring on l
the minority the rights taken for granted by the majority.
It was upsetting to me that my elderly grandparents couldn’t be with
us, nor my young nephew as we celebrated our wedding day, as they all
absolutely adore my wife and would have loved to be there on the day
to celebrate with us. But their age and health meant they couldn’t
make the journey.
It just doesn’t seem fair that by virtue of our sexuality alone, we
should be denied these basic joys to which my siblings were entitled,
by virtue of theirs. Especially since we are subject to the same
social and fiscal obligations as our heterosexual siblings – we pay
the same taxes and participate in the same admirable Australian way of
life, yet are denied the benefits of same.
When we get home we know some of the burnish will fade – after all, we
will no longer be legally married once we set foot back in the country
of our birth.
Regardless of how one wishes to frame it – what semantic tricks are
played – it is discrimination, pure and simple. And I am sick of it.
Please support marriage equality for same sex couples.
Yours sincerely,


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