As a matter of policy I don’t post anything political on this blog so, while I made my company Mods and Rockers an official supporter of the Yes campaign, hung posters and fought some battles online and IRL I’ve kept quiet here.
Just thinking about it this morning I’m now of the opinion that this is not a completely political issue and one of ethics whichever side you’re on.
I’ve reflected a lot on the reasons on why a yes vote is the correct vote.
There’s no point in me rehashing the popular arguments here.
The most compelling one that seems to be less often articulated is that of family definition. I’m not inclined to think that this redefines the family in any meaningful way. In any case the traditional unit of mammy and daddy with kids has never been the only way.
In the 19th and 20th century we as a country tried to shoehorn families that didn’t fit this brief with disastrous consequences (Magdalene Laundries etc.).
I’m proud how my cousin, who had a child with an absent daddy in the 1920s, didn’t succumb to the pressures of church and state and how the family raised him without separating him and his mother.
In any case the whole argument is based on what is natural. Natural is a terribly meaningless word. Our greatest successes as humans have been our triumphs over natural – modern medicine, agriculture, the lunar landings etc. In fact there are parents who are the natural guardians of children but not the best guardians.
The logical conclusion of the primacy of a “natural family” logic is that fostering and social services should be culled. Nonsense.
In any case this is not about that. The criteria of who can hold the custody of a child is another debate. There is already legislation here and it already allows homosexual couples to adopt.
The other argument is one of democracy. If we can accept the premise that this does not affect others negatively but feel we should vote no because “it doesn’t feel right” or “it’s against my religion” then I think that a voter should abstain. The consequences of a theocratic approach to government in any country in the world have been terrifying throughout history. If it doesn’t affect you or the disenfranchised future generations then don’t block it.
There are some other reasons to consider that the Yes campaign wouldn’t voice but I as a propagandist appreciate. Firstly, we’re being watched across the planet with the international media frequently painting us as a backward theocratic 19th century nightmare.
We’re not. We’ve had a painful last few years as a country but we’ve succeeded in really kicking ass despite a deficient ruling class.
This is our chance for us to show the planet that we’re the progressive species that built the USA, kept the flame of civilisation burning through the dark ages and has entertained and taught the planet despite being one of it’s smallest polities.
It’s telling that the vested interests that have financed the no campaign deny science, reason and anything that progresses our species beyond a blight that devours the planet. We cannot afford to give this organised denial of our capacity to reason an endorsement.
With this in mind. Inform your vote and your conscience and read the unbiased materials: http://refcom2015.ie/marriage/