d) Family, relationships and marriage
This column was published in MCV and SX News on 30.11.10
A reader of this column recently criticised it for focussing so heavily on marriage equality.
The reader writes that “it is blatantly misleading” for the column to be subtitled "GLBTI issues in focus and in-depth".
“Croome has only one issue - same sex marriage. There are many other GLBTI issues equally if not more worthy of focus and in-depth address. A more accurate subtitle would be "A monomaniac drones on".
In my 20-plus years advocating and lobbying for GLBTI people I have been involved in depth with every imaginable issue from workplace discrimination through school anti-homophobia programs to transgender hate crime and gay blood donation.
I am proud of the changes I have helped bring about.
But there is one issue which demands as much of my attention, time and resources as possible – marriage equality.
This is not because I desperately want to get married (although one day I would like to wed the man I love).
It’s not even because of principles like legal equality and freedom of choice, as important as they are.
It is because marriage equality is a pre-requisite to full inclusion.
Marriage is an institution which joins partners, not only to each other, but to each other's families and to the community.
This is why marriage creates kinship through terms like 'brother-in-law' and 'mother-in-law'. It is why wedding guests are traditionally asked if they object to the marriage. It is why the state has a role in registering and entitling marriages.
In short, marriage creates belonging.
To exclude same-sex partners and their children from marriage sends the opposite message that we cannot love as deeply, commit as strongly, parent as well, or contribute as valuably as well as others do.
It says we do not belong.
On the weekend of the 4th and 5th of December, Australian Marriage Equality will be conducting workshops in Melbourne and Sydney respectively.
They have been designed by expert educators for people who support the issue but aren’t sure how to turn that support into effective action.
Register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
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