Monday, May 25, 2015

Irish Gay Marriages by Fall


We can forgive a short pun period following the Irish plebiscite putting marriage equality in the constitution. I've heard the likes of sods on the auld sod. I do not hear anti-gay meanness, just spill-over giddiness.

[By the bye, all constituencies but one, Roscommon–South Leitrim, voted in favor of equality. That exurban area was close, 51.42% to 48.58% against. Surprisingly, there was little difference by age, but as a rule, the more urban, the more in favor.]

Now implementation turns out to be trivial. After all, the constitution did not forbid same-sex marriage. Instead, the vote this weekend added only, "Marriage may be contracted in accordance with law by two persons without distinction as to their sex."

Putting that into reality, likely by September, seems to require:

  1. President Michael D. HIggins signing the Marriage Equality Bill into law.
  2. Legal genuflection to religious lobbyists to put in unnecessary religious-protection redundancies as has happened throughout the United States.
  3. Similarly even though same-sex marriages will have equal footing and requirements, the new law will also state specifically that the same consanguinity (incest) strictures apply to gay couples.
  4. Civil forms and the resulting ceremonies will allow couples to be husband and wife or spouses of each other.
  5. And...and...nothing. Done and done.

In that very Catholic nation, that church got support from Protestants and Muslims for its literal demand that the law state explicitly that no cleric will have to perform a same-sex wedding. That red herring is so tiresome and so irrational and so unnecessary. Yet, it seems to make the anti-gay types feel better about their other tradition, that of harming, hampering and hindering homosexuals.

With this false and silly "victory," will they shut up about this? Probably not.

As we have seen and heard in the socially slow United States and even in spots in Canada, anti-gay sorts fixate on religious oppression certain to befall clerics and laity. It doesn't happen and won't happen. It is forbidden by law. The mere passage of marriage-equality does not clear out the statutes and case law protecting the, nominally at least, religious. They can continue to be nasty, spiteful and slanderous. How very sad that must be.



Saturday, May 23, 2015

Ireland's Newest Beacon

Less than a year ago, we headed to Ireland for two weeks, arriving on the Dublin leg coincidentally on Pride Day. While most of the marchers and those at the Pride concerts were young, it's no exaggeration to note that the city was delighted.

I can't say I was surprised that the country voted strongly to put marriage equality in its constitution. It's the first nation to do so, putting yet another rock on the trash can filled with anti-gay sorts.

When this country or that state legalized same-sex marriage, the anti sorts did their damnedest to qualify it. Oh, that was a court of unelected activist judges. Then, oh, well the legislature forced this on the voters. And the ever serviceable, let the people vote!

Now thanks to Ireland, it's all ways now, including plebiscite.

On Dublin Pride 2014, they out-Boston-ed us. It seemed every private and public building and business had the banners, flags and posters. Meanwhile, here there were still loud debates about whether gay groups would be able to march in the St. Patrick's Day parade. Well, in all Irish cities, that had long been settled in favor on inclusion.

Sure there are things that are public business and others that affect only those directly involved. Ireland is in the camp of marriage between two adults is their business and not yours or mine. Good on 'em.


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