Tuesday, 28 April 2015

May 22nd 2015, a day for the Irish History Books

On the 22nd May, we get to go out and make history.  Our generation gets the opportunity to change a law in this country that will have an amazingly positive effect on so many people who live here.  It is a date that will go down as one of our greatest achievements as a Nation.  We live in a country that is going through so much change, a lot of which we, as an electorate, have little or no control over. But, on the 22nd May, we have the power to make a positive change for so many people and, most importantly to me, our children!

Voting yes to equality for marriage shows that we no longer see homosexuality as "different".  It means that everyone, no matter who you love, gets to stand up in front of all their friends and family and commit to that love until death do they part.  The day I got married was the second happiest day of my life, pipped only by the day we brought our daughter into the world.  Why on earth shouldn't everyone, every last person in this country, have the right to do that if they wish?

I have seen some of the "No Side" posters, one of which says "don't redefine marriage".  But I think this referendum shows that for some, marriage does need to be redefined.  It is the perfect time for those of us born with the right to marry who we want to stop, take a good long look and appreciate what a privilege it is to posses this right.  It is a privilege that my husband got down on one knee and and said the words "will you marry me".  It was one of the most beautiful sentences that has ever been uttered to me.  I am pretty sure the words "will you civil partnership me" has a far less romantic re-tell value... I didn't have to fight for the right to commit to my husband.  No one had to hold a referendum for me to do it.  I didn't have to sit and wait impatiently for news that a law has been passed condoning our love and commitment to one another.  This debate makes me appreciate how easy it was for us, and makes me realise how much I want it to be that easy for everyone.  Maybe redefining how those of us with the right to marry see marriage will make people more respectful of it?

Since having my daughter, these issues have become so much more important to me.  Equality for all is the most important thing to me now.  Who's to say that my little girl is not going to fall in love with someone else's little girl?  Does that mean that we, as parents, should be robbed of the pride of walking her down an aisle and giving her away to that love?  I want my children, however many I am blessed with, to know that it is ok to be who you are.  I don't want them to hide from themselves.  I want them to embrace it.  And, if they do love the same sex, I want them to have the same rights they would have if they loved the opposite sex.

Love is love. Let's all get out on the 22nd May and vote Yes! Let's be part of a positive change in this country.  One we can stand up and be proud of.  One that our kids and every other generation afterwards can be grateful for.

As Macklemore and Ryan Lewis once said " No Freedom till we are all equal"...