Canada recently elected social extremist Stephen Harper as a Prime Minister. Harper is against gay marriage.
I am a conservative, family and community based citizen and therefore support gay marriage.
Criminals, pimps, prostitutes, sex offenders and Stephen Harper are allowed to be married. The human rights of these citizens are defended in higher status than gays in many countries. I was proud that Canada put gays rights at least as valuable as a pimp on July 20, 2005.
If the extremist governement of Harper believes that traditional families are defined for having children, then shouldn't all infertile women and men not be allowed to get married? How about couples long divorced and with grown children? Should it be illegal for them to marry?
Marriage isn't just about children otherwise we would consider elderly and infertile people ineligible for marriage.
Denmark legalized gay marriage in 1989 and has seen reduced suicide rates and reduced sexually transmitted diseases. Studies show that married people are happier and are healthier therefore this relieves medical benefits for employers and the state.
During the SARS outbreak I was admitted to an emergency ward in downtown Toronto. The hospital was hauntingly quiet no visitors and no voluteer staff. I came to appreciate the valuable irreplaceable efforts that help run a hospital by seeing it function without its support staff and family visitors. I would have normally imagined I would want a private room but I was so pleased to have the company of other patients. We were not allowed visitors unless they were a spouse. For a glass of water or cup of tea we had to burden the already overwhelmed nursing staff. A hospital is dependant on volunteers, nuns, priests rabbis, family and spouses to help patient care and smooth the burdens on health care professionals. It was a lonely frightening few days.
I came to respect the rights of gays more than ever for gay marriage. Medical decisions would be protected for both partners/spouses and most importantly, any children. Who would visit a child in the hospital? Who would visit school plays, parent teacher meetings, and represent a child in legal matters? We are inviting a new kind of orphan with rejecting the rights to gay couples and families to represent their kids and each other.
We don't have to agree , like or believe in gay peoples sexual orientation to be tolerant. What kind of human are we to allow a child to function as an orphan or a patient to be left marooned within the health care system. We should want to protect inheritance laws that straights already have grown comfortable facilitaitng. Other legal and human rights issues are involved including conjugal visits the idea of justice where a spouse would be forced to testify against their partner and the loss of real estate and lifes work due to ignorance or lack of empathy in the well protected comfortable world of straights. A convict serving time for armed robbery can have conjugal visits. A white collar gay convict can not.
Don't let intolerance and cynicism guide you Canadians! Don't let Stephen Harper talk you out of love and compassion. After political fat cats have a long summer holiday with their families... don't let a few politicians this coming autumn corrupt the proud human rights acheivements of Canada.
I follow a blog called Desert Odyssey by a fun military guy Lucky. This week he was a guest blooger on a another persons blog here. He is an unlikely soul to inspire me with his definition of a family for a post about gay marriage, but inspire me he does with the following universal sentiments...
"To me a family unit is not simply numbers, like a definition of a husband, wife, and 2.5 kids. A family is not a unit just by being a family. It becomes a unit when it becomes one, like parts of a body. When separated the unit suffers as a whole, and the only cure to that unit is to bring them back together again." Lucky
ADDENDUM: In December, 2006, Canada turned down Harper's attempt to outlaw gay marriage. Yippee Canada! Here is the story.