Australia is broke (especially Queensland).
Australia is broke, while Wales and England choose to send “a powerful message” about equality;“The introduction of same-sex civil marriage says something about the sort of country we are. “It says we are a country that will continue to honour its proud traditions of respect, tolerance and equal worth. It also sends a powerful message to young people growing up who are uncertain about their sexuality. “It clearly says ‘you are equal’ whether straight or gay. That is so important in trying to create an environment where people are no longer bullied because of their sexuality – and where they can realise their potential, whether as a great mathematician like Alan Turing, a star of stage and screen like Sir Ian McKellen or a wonderful journalist and presenter like Clare Balding.”
Australia is broke, and I am not just referring to the economy. Marriage equality advocates herald Abboott’s agreement to allow same-sex couples with British citizenship to marry at UK consulates in Australia as progress. After the public’s reaction to the schooling Abbott received by these Year 9s, where even he got “a clear message”. It is the least he could do given the current social environment.
To approach Liberals on the subject of same-sex marriage rights with arguments about ethics or what befits a civil society, is rather like me extolling the virtues of my new computer operating system to a handful of kale I purchased at the Farmer’s Market. Abbott cuts legal support to our asylum seeking prisoners, but he re-introduces knighthoods. Abbott denies climate change and defends bigots. Abbtt truly deserves our scorn, and Australia continues in its race to the bottom.
And while I dwell on the topic of bottoms, I share Dan Savage’s opinion that homophobia is really male butt-sex (sodomy) phobia so, a) if you do not like thinking about it, stop trying to picture it, and b) lots of heterosexual couples enjoy anal sex and sometimes it is the man getting it in the bum. It’s called pegging. I could comment tangentially how Winnipeg is called “The Peg”, and the people of Winnipeg are called “Peggers”, but I will exercise restraint.
To swiftly build Liberal support for same-sex marriage is the argue the power of the dollar, the Pink Dollar.
The “pink dollar” would create an influx of money back into the economy. Consider bucks/hens nights, bridal showers, reception venues, “alt”and traditional fancy dress stores, lingerie shops, sex stores, stores with wedding registries, hotels, and honeymoon destinations. Consider the Entertainers, Bands, DJs, Caterers, Justices of the Peace (and others), Event Planners, Decorators, Flower Arrangers, Cake Specialists, Beauticians, and yes, pre-nup and divorce Lawyers.
Not to mention the “long-term” purchases that couples are more likely to make when they feel secure and stable – mortgages, loans, houses, cars, weekend residences/timeshares, boats…and what about the further expenses if we embrace sex-sex adoption?
As Australia continues to fight it, couples will choose to go elsewhere to marry (and may choose to remain elsewhere permanently in order to have their union recognised and to enjoy the legal benefits that are the natural result of that recognition).
We will lose out in many respects, not least of all because of our reputation as the “developed” nation that fiercely demands to be bigoted and backwards.
We can look to Arizona to see the times are a-changin’. When conservative politicians and businesses pushed for the veto of a bill that would allow businesses to legally refuse to serve LGBT people, it is unsurprising that the issue at hand was about potential financial losses. The CEOs of the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, Greater Phoenix Leadership and the Southern Arizona Leadership Council released a statement that should Governor Jan Brewer approve SB 1062, it would “send a message that our state is anything but an open and attractive place for visitors and the top talent that will be the cornerstone of our continued economic growth”.
Kristin Jarnagin, vice president of the Arizona Lodging and Tourism Association, said just the fact that the Legislature approved the measure has resulted in canceled trips. “We literally begged lawmakers to consider the unintended consequences not only on our tourism industry but on our ability to attract new businesses and jobs to our state”.
In an open letter, internationally recognised actor, pop-culture icon, and Facebook celebrity, George Takei announced that he would proudly lead a national boycott if Brewer did not veto the bill:
“If your Governor Jan Brewer signs this repugnant bill into law, make no mistake. We will not come. We will not spend. And we will urge everyone we know–from large corporations to small families on vacation–to boycott. Because you don’t deserve our dollars. Not one red cent”.
Whichever voice she heard, Governor Brewer listened to the message and vetoed the bill, because politicians understand money and votes.
Money motivates, and the economy can be an indicator of the well-being of a population. We use fines, taxes, and economic sanctions to control behaviour.
- accepting same-sex couples can have immediate benefits to the economy
- accepting same-sex couples makes living here attractive to younger generations
- accepting same-sex couples invites entrepreneurs and investors
- accepting same-sex couples creates a stronger society
- accepting same-sex couples creates a more unified Australian identity
And, while it is not a magic solution, it can help to begin some deeper healing
- accepting same-sex couples will allow taboo topics such as sexual identity, depression, health issues, and abuse to come to the fore
- accepting same-sex couples can improve mental and physical health outcomes for many Australians, regardless of their seal orientation
- accepting same-sex couples can allow us to become conscious of addressing the inequalities that exist in the LGBTI “community”, and evolve a wider understanding of the diversity and nuance that exists in our sexuality and gender.
The acceptance of same-sex couples, and diversity of gender is what befits a “developed” country, one based on democracy and Christian values, the man who spoke out against divorce, but not homosexuality.