A few hours ago, gay marriage in the United Kingdom was approved in principal so if that doesn't warrant a blog post, then nothing will.
As a gay male myself, I have differing views regarding gay marriage but it has always presented itself as an almost archaic embarrassment in an otherwise widely liberal country. I don't think I would ever choose to marry (never say never) but that is more for personal reasons rather than the belief that gay people should not be allowed - it is just not something I would ever wish to partake in. I do however view the current 'civil partnership' system as somewhat of a smoke screen that segregates sexual orientations whilst at the same time prevents the British government from being labelled as bigots. It's a crowd pleaser, let's be honest. I believe that all humans regardless of race, gender, age or sexuality should have the same choices in life and that it should be down to the individual as to whether they then make those choices. Any law that restricts this automatically gets my back up and the gay marriage bill is the one stickler that I have had my eye on for a while.
Britain is one of the most powerful countries in the world and historically has been classified as a trendsetter when it comes to laws and policies. The fact that, up until now, its gay citizens were still deemed inferior to its straight population made my heart sink. Compared to the rest of northern Europe, we're practically medieval - our close neighbours in Belgium, Denmark, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and The Netherlands have all offered marriage equality for some time now and I'm surprised that it has even taken this long to get the ball rolling. In fact, I honestly did not think the ball would ever get kicked let alone roll.
Imagine my surprise earlier at work, whilst busy tidying up ready for lights out; I looked up at our BBC news screen and was confronted with the headline 'BREAKING NEWS: COMMONS BACKS GAY MARRIAGE BILL'. Yes it has taken far too long and yes it is causing far greater chaos than the topic of equality really should but I have to say that I am incredibly proud of Prime Minister David Cameron for bulldozing this bill through despite going against his own party's beliefs and alienating many of his voters in the progress. It would be easy for the Labour party to pass this bill; the majority of their supporters are left wing liberalists who have been speaking out in support of this topic for many years. It's a sure fire vote-winner for Labour but for the Tories, it's a whole different ball game; staunch centre-right conservatives that have no interest in modernisation. News reports are describing him as a sinking ship, a kamikaze pilot losing the support of his peers but in all honesty, I really do not think this decision has done him any harm. There are thousands upon thousands of potential voters in this country that have never been compelled to visit a polling booth in their lives but this strong brave move from a man that stands to lose everything may just provide them with the encouragement they need in order to pledge their support.
I am a great believer in the idea that everyone should be entitled to voice their opinions and put across their views in a sensible, fair manner but it has angered me at just how many women have had the audacity to speak out against gay marriage over the past few days. The disgusting injustices that women have had to endure and overcome in order to get to where they are today, I would wholeheartedly expect the majority to pledge their support to the cause and to hear the triade of hate speech and ridiculous opinions from some of them has completely sickened me. It appears many feel that the guise of religion allows them to separate the trials gay people currently face from their own plight over the years - something I will never understand as if we still lived in accordance with holy books, women would not even be allowed to present an opinion on social issues, let alone vote.
The religious fanatics will continue to shout (possibly louder than ever before) and legions of bigots will hold on to the shield of 'religious views' in order to practice their hate speech but nothing can take away from the fact that times are changing and today will forever hold a place in history as the day Britain took its final step in the direction of universal equality.
Today I feel proud. Injustice never triumphs; not in the end.