December 05, 2005

Civil Partnership Act

It's about time. The Civil Partnership Act came into force about thirty minutes ago. This act gives the same rights and responsibilities to homosexual couples as straight couples. I am not sure why it doesn't extend to straight couples wanting an alternative to marriage (and all that it stands for) but who am I to challenge the wisdom of our MPs?!?

One of the opponents of the Civil Partnership Act is Patrick Cormack and my parents are in his constituency. He votes against all motions that seek to promote homosexual practise as a valid lifestyle. This includes motions that permit or encourage such teaching in schools, reduce the age of consent, give additional rights to homosexual couples, allow homosexuals to adopt or create state recognised unions between same-sex couples. I asked them not to vote for him, but they probably did. Does this mean that they agree with him on these issues, or didn't consider it important enough to base their choice of party on? I don't know what to feel about this but I don't think that it is good to dwell on it for too long.

But I am happy today, as the UK has come another step closer to equality for all of its citizens. It's good to know that no one can challenge Ms right to be with me when I have to have another operation or that if anything happens to either of us, there are inheritance tax rights the same as any other married couple.

But what to call M? I wouldn't say 'wife' because that suggests marriage which I don't want to be associated with. I wouldn't say 'girlfriend' either because it sounds too temporary. 'Partner' is out of the question as it sounds like you're in a gym lesson. 'Hi, this is my spouse' is just plain silly. Also, civil partners won't get divorced, we will get dissolved. Just pop us in some water and we disappear, just like that! Magic.

As hard as I try, I can't get to grips with the counter argument to rights for homosexual people. The argument invariably includes the following: "It's a choice", "It says that it's wrong in the bible", "It's not normal", "It undermines family values". The argument grinds to a halt after a few minutes and there is very little chance in changing anyones mind about the above. It is an eternal stalemate. I find that it is the religious argument that I really struggle with. It has become clear to me that it is acceptable to use religion as an excuse to hate by taking a one sided interpretation of a book (the translation of which is debatable) as an absolute truth. My God loves you, but hates what you do. Or just, my God hates you. You are wrong…but you can be saved! Hurrah! I will pray for you. Stop the damned praying. Where is that damned asbestos blanket?

- 5 comments by 2 or more people Not publicly viewable

  1. Matthew

    The problem with gay marriage is that it means you'll have to go on two Stag Nights. Think of the expense. I'm against it.

    05 Dec 2005, 11:49

  2. When will my country publish equality to all its citizens? I wont expect this could happen in one or two decades. All human beings in this planet deserve same rights of whatever things.

    05 Dec 2005, 13:21

  3. Shan, I agree with you. Everyone deserves the same rights. But, there are many countries such as the USA that promise it but fail to deliver in so many areas. I think that change only occurs if many people are vocal about it – making their point of view heard. Sometimes it falls on deaf ears, but sometimes it works. In China, are there lots of people being vocal about issues that matter to them, or is it not the done thing?

    05 Dec 2005, 23:03

  4. I think it is not the done thing, but also have to admit that very few people in China being vocal about issues that matter to them, especially young people, they keep complaining instead of doing in person. But this is caused by lots of reasons… and besides that, it seems most times we have to put our main attention on some more severe or urgent issures such as starvation, medical conditions or education in remote countries.

    06 Dec 2005, 18:10

  5. Paul Roberts

    I read your blog with interest on several counts and taking them in order, I am a little bemused about your dislike of the word partner. To me, a partnership denotes a relationship built on mutual trust that leads to sharing in the risks and opportunities of life. Alternatives such as consort sound formal and old fashioned, 'mate' I associate with animals and spouse with marriage.If you try to forget what must have been some gruesome gym sessions, you may find that partner hits the right note.

    The other major issue, equality, is one that we have still to get to grips with in this country and if we started by believing that everyone has the basic right to live and be treated on the same terms as everyone else all of the discussioins on who should have what (either in terms of recognition or finance) would be unnecessary. As to what to do about inequality, there's a subject for dissussion. I believe that we can all demonstrate that we treat others equally and this action should drive all who believe in equality. Some of course will seek to extend their influence through politics and others by supporting those politicians who advocate and practice equality.

    09 Dec 2005, 19:58

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