Finally, after a long and painful battle, the equal marriage law has past its final hurdle in the commons and the lords and it’s heading for royal assent
Royal assent is a rubber stamp, even though there’s a petition from the homophobes to try and encourage Her Maj not to sign it – that’s just ridiculous. Even I, at my most paranoid and cynical (which is very very paranoid indeed and cynical beyond measure) don’t believe for a second that royal assent isn’t going to happen.
David Burrowes, the eternal homophobe, was the last one to try and derail this and he failed. It has been an exhausting and soul destroying fight. The homophobes in the media, on the net, in parliament, in daily life and most certainly from the churches have been overwhelmingly vicious. It has been a trial these last few months while the bigots did everything they could to hurt us, to attack us, to say grossly unacceptable things about us, to do everything they possibly could to stop our rights advancing.
Their fight shows that our fight cannot stop- there are still so many battles to fight, we still have to battle for our place in society, our place as full members and our place as people due respect and even safety. We also have to expect that they will push back against us, they will launch their stealth attacks, their exceptions, their loopholes for bigotry – and they will certainly try to claim that homophobia has disappeared.
Remember how ridiculous that claim is. Full legal equality (which we don’t actually have due to some holes) does not mean prejudice and persecution dies, nor does it mean we’re going to live in a country that fully respects us as people. In truth, full legal equality merely brings us to the same place that other persecuted minorities already occupy in the UK – and only the most privileged, delusional or bigoted (Daily Mail readers) would claim that sexism, racism et al have disappeared and there’s no problems left in the country.
We still have to fight – but this battle? This battle we won. I can still scarcely believe it, at every stage I expected one of the innumerable attacks to succeed in derailing us… but we got there.
We’ve taken a step forward – but there’s a long way yet to come. But I’m going to stand on this step and feel the joy for a while.
We will be able to get married in summer 2014, most likely. I don’t think it will truly sink in or I will be able to relax until it actually reaches then – but we’ve passed the hurdles.