Stella & Lucy: Love Conquers Prejudice
Curve’s resident fashionistas join the fight for marriage equality.
Photo By: Alex Styles
We are engaged and have told our families that we want to get married, which has led to more negative responses from them. No surprise there: this has been the norm ever since our stop-go coming out and remains our biggest challenge, an altercation we simply cannot win. The fight for equality is reaching its climax, and we mean business! How can family members possibly understand our love for one another and stop judging us when not even the government of our country, where we have lived our whole lives, is wholeheartedly committed to equal marriage? In effect, it makes our situation even more painful and harder to defend. Trouble is, that’s all we do now—constantly shield who we are, how we live, and who we love. We hear that same-sex couples are unnatural, but equally it is immoral for people to bully, and discriminate against, those who love someone of the same sex. To love and wish to belong—these are the most natural desires in the world. It seems that hatred motivates and rules the narrow-minded. Victimization is abuse, and those on the receiving end suffer more damage than those who cast the stones could imagine.
The smiles and flow of champagne reaction has been replaced by words of discouragement. ‘If you’re happy, we’re happy!’ is a line regularly employed whilst congratulations do not make an appearance. Will we get our chin-chin from cut crystal or will we be sipping the sanctimonious words of some relatives? We have to surround ourselves with like-minded people and share our joy with those who understand our life values. Even the most established and confident of women can be confused ... how can we not question our own beliefs when the very people whose blood we share question our identity and decisions merely because the person with whom we want to spend the rest of our lives is the same sex?!
We have never expected material things but we do expect respect. We have been brought up to believe that family is inclusive, that family is with you every step of the way, that family has no end. Unfortunately these precepts are easily abandoned when the going gets tough.
As we understand it, the UK Coalition Government intends that any legislative changes necessary to implement equal civil marriage for same-sex couples will have been made before the next general election, due in 2015. Whether we can trust this process is another matter, especially given this Government’s habit of giving voice to opponents of equality. Opinion polls show increasing levels of tolerance and support from the wider population.
Why should we have to prove that we are as worthy as any other couple to embark upon a loving, shared, prosperous life together? We ask ourselves why we should feel compelled to retaliate against such prejudice? On looking at society’s stereotypes of the modern lesbian, even we question our place. When the UK Government is so slow to act on inclusion, how can we expect others to empathize?
If we don’t all pull together now, then our voices will not be heard. There’s more to uniting than just paying lip service. We have been suffering in silence for too long. If the Government thinks that we will all wait patiently until nothing is done, they clearly haven’t been dealing with the right people. We will NOT be waiting forever and we will NOT be forced to marry in another country because our own cannot take the appropriate action. We personally are not engaged to be civil-partnered; we are engaged to be married. To have the legal right to a civil partnership is certainly a step in the right direction, but we haven’t made it to the altar yet! The Government proposals for 2015 address civil marriage only, but why shouldn’t we have the same entitlement as heterosexual couples to marry in church? This is what personally hurts the most: we both believe in God and maintain a strong belief in our faith and religion, but our respective churches frown on us. Some Christian churches display most un-Christian attitudes, appearing to forget Jesus’s command that we should all love one another as he loved us. Some heterosexual couples who marry in church have not even been baptized, have no faith and yet see fit to hold their marriage ceremony there simply for show. Why is this not frowned upon?
We’re more than ready to throw on the gear and fight a full equality campaign. We, meaning all of the LGBT communities, need to engage in the struggle and not shy away from the facts of the situation. We are not defeatist types and it’s now or never. We will no longer be rejected, we deserve and demand to be accepted.
We have set up a petition, addressed to David Cameron, calling for the legalization of same-sex marriage in the UK. Please follow the link attached to this article and sign it. Show your support for our cause. We are not just a label and are more than our stereotypes. We are human too and we bleed the same blood as every other. We need everyone who believes in justice and equality to stand up and fight. We will not just lie down and be walked all over. It really is time to make a change. STAMP OUT DISCRIMINATION—MAKE US ONE EQUAL NATION.
xox Stella and Lucy