Equality

I’ve been fortunate to be out of Australia for the last couple of months, so I’ve missed much of the rhetoric over the ridiculous equality plebiscite that isn’t even binding.

I didn’t say marriage equality or gay marriage on purpose, if another person is not allowed the same rights as you are, that’s not a gay issue, or a marriage issue, it’s an equality issue.

My personal view, which is somewhat irrelevant, is that this issue should not even be an issue. Marry who you want to, your marital status will not affect my life and it won’t diminish my marital status, and if you think it will, the issue isn’t with someone else being allowed to get married, it’s with you and your own marriage.

My opinion isn’t the point of the post though, I recently read that an Archbishop in Australia has written to Catholics urging them to vote no. He makes his case, which I think is weak, but nevertheless he makes his case. He advocates for inequality, and this is why I have a particular issue with a Catholic Archbishop advocating for inequality.

I have just returned from a month in Ireland. (It’s a beautiful country with amazing people and I recommend you visit) On every tour I did I would hear about the time when Catholics were unequal. When Catholics were second-class citizens, when Catholics couldn’t vote, when Catholics could have mass, when Catholics couldn’t own land, etc.

I learnt that the Irish potato famine wasn’t a time when Ireland had no food or grew no food…it was a time when Catholics didn’t have access to food, there was plenty of food grown in Ireland at the time, but Catholics weren’t allowed it, because they’re weren’t equal. Around a million Catholics literally starved to death due to that inequality.

The stories are tragic and unfair and had horrific consequences, basically all because Catholics weren’t equal. Catholics didn’t have equal rights, Catholics were second-class citizens, so it’s bitterly disappointing to me that a man, this boss of the Catholics in Australia, has written to his parishioners asking them to vote for inequality, when he should know from his own religion’s relatively recent past the harm inequality does.

If you hold someone down to validate your place, there is something wrong with your place. If you can’t look to the inequality of the past in your own religion and see that inequality is wrong, then there’s something wrong with you.

I have a fear that the no vote will win and that will not be okay. My whole timeline thought people would vote remain in Brexit, my whole timeline thought Hilary would be president and my whole timeline thinks yes is  right…. because it is, but god only knows how the Catholics will vote after their boss advocated for inequality.

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