I’ve spent the last few hours attempting to write this article from a non-personal perspective and I’ve failed miserably. So straight up, I’m sorry. I take decisions surrounding the rights of the people I care about extremely personally.
I moved to Queensland around seven years ago and up until last night I was proud to call it home.
An emergency rally was called yesterday at the Queensland parliament as a motion was urgently moved forward to not only remove civil ceremonies from the Civil Unions Act, but also further water it down by changing it to “registered relationships.”
June 21st, 2012
Sitting in the public gallery listening to a group of politicians refer to same-sex relationships as of lessor value then heterosexual ones, I was so repulsed and angry that I really couldn’t contain myself any more. When member for Coomera Michael Crandon used the words “register their interest in one another” that was the straw that broke this camel’s back. I am human being, not a house hold pet or car!
I stood up and rather loudly shouted “We’re not bloody dogs we are human beings.” I had a few other things that I said in the heat of the moment that I can’t quite remember, but I found myself being swiftly escorted out of the building by security and police.
As I sat out the front I watched a few other members of the public leave in utter disgust over what they were hearing inside. The consensus was the LNP had won before the debate was over. Their numbers far outweighed the opposition that the so called “urgent amendments” to the Civil Unions Act would happen whether we like it or not. The LNP now had enough power in the state government one could even go to the extent of calling it a dictatorship.
It was about 15 minutes after my removal from the building that I heard it. Turns out the protesters who had turned up early to chant outside and attend the debate had also had enough. What followed was nearly 100 people repeatedly chanting “Shame, bigot, shame.” being forced to the leave the public gallery. One security guard went so far as to forcibly remove one protester by twisting his arm quite high behind his back. While it has also been reported another policeman was forcibly pushing others. The group migrated to the front doors where more chants continued.
You can see a video of the action below.
And here’s the ABC’s news story.
The current Queensland Government has yet again given the LGBTIQ community another slap to the face with their motion to make further amendments to the Civil Unions Act not only stopping with the removal of state sanctioned ceremonies, but also renaming the bill.
And if that wasn’t enough, Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie also announced at the parliamentary debate that Queensland Government would also in the future be introducing a bill to reshape the altruistic surrogacy law that would ban single people and same-sex couples from having a child through surrogacy, while adding more restrictions to couples in de facto relationships.
Qld AG Jarrod Bleijie hasannounced surrogacy 2 b amended so singles and same-sex couples can no longer acquire babies.#kidsrightscount— Lyle Shelton (@LyleShelton) June 21, 2012
Whether some like to admit it or not, a majority of the LGBTQI community do feel that the current times are becoming more reminiscent of the appalling Joh Bjelke – Petersen era as the days go on. This is just the beginning. Some reading this are probably thinking why bother protesting? What’s the point?
I can only speak for myself, but I feel proud that members of the LGBTQI community stood up to an oppresive government back then, and I feel I at least owe it to those very people that sweated and fought so hard to get me the rights I have today, that I too need to keep fighting.
The fact of the matter is, this is more than just civil unions, marriage equality, and the de-funding of healthy communities. This is about the rights and needs of a minority group being taken away while being expected to pay taxes to be classed as second class citizens. It has to stop!
We’ll keep you updated on future events and actions, and you can join the Equal Love Brisbane group on Facebook here.