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Comment: Marriage is the gold standard for gay couples

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  1. It’s great that Pink News is raising the profile of this issue.

  2. Damn straight. Couldn’t have said it better myself. Good to see Pinknews stepping up where Stonewall don’t.

    Here is the text of the Liberal Democrat motion which will be going to conference, which is available online;

    Conference notes that:
    i) At present no two individuals of the same sex may enter into a marriage in the United Kingdom, and that no two individuals of mixed sex may enter into a civil partnership.
    ii) Under the terms of the Gender Recognition Act (2004) any individual seeking gender recognition or to change their gender as legally recognised cannot remain in a marriage or civil partnership.

    Conference recognises that:
    a) The Deputy Prime Minister, and Leader of the Liberal Democrats, the Rt Hon Nick Clegg MP, said in Pink News on 17th February 2010: ‘I support gay marriage. Love is the same, straight
    or gay, so the civil institution should be the same too. All couples should be able to make that commitment to one another’.
    b) The moves by the new coalition government to allow ceremonies for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender couples to be performed in religious buildings are very much welcomed.
    c) Whether someone believes in marriage, civil partnership or commitment, any religious organisation or building whether a church, mosque or temple which chooses to have civil partnerships celebrated at their religious places of worship will be in the future able to do so.
    d) To grant rights to one group of individuals which are denied to others based on sexual orientation and gender is unconscionable.
    e) The current arrangements with regards to marriage are discriminatory in nature.
    f) Non-UK same-sex marriages are currently equated to civil partnership in the UK, not marriage.

    Conference believes that as stated in the preamble to the party’s constitution, we ‘exist to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values
    of liberty, equality and community’ and ‘reject all prejudice and discrimination’ including those issues which relate to gender and sexual orientation.

    Conference therefore calls on the British government to:
    1. Open both marriage and civil partnerships to both same-sex and mixed-sex couples.
    2. To allow approved religious and humanist celebrants to legally solemnise and celebrate same-sex marriage and civil partnerships in places of religious worship.
    3. To allow those individuals who wish to seek gender recognition or change their legally recognised gender to remain in their current marriage or civil partnership without changing
    any legal requirements.
    4. To establish a simplistic process by which any existing civil partnership may be converted into a marriage or vice-versa without the need to dissolve the civil partnership or proceed with a divorce.
    5. To automatically recognise all non-UK same-sex marriages as marriage in the UK, and to subsequently remove non-UK same-sex marriages from the current schedule which equates them to civil partnerships in the UK.
    6. To continue to maintain the schedule equating non-UK same-sex civil unions or registered partnerships as civil partnerships in the UK.
    7. To add non-UK opposite-sex civil unions or registered partnerships to the schedule equating them to Civil Partnerships in the UK.
    8. To openly promote and encourage recognition of same-sex marriage and civil partnerships across the European Union, especially in countries where currently no laws exist.

  3. This is Ben Summerskill’s fault – he is not pushing for gay marriage and he should go. He does not represent us

  4. This is positive news and news that surely the ‘powers that be’ can no longer ignore. To grant full marriage to all would stop once and for all the questions about recognition around the would and those companies that feel they don’t have to include Civil Partnerships in forms.

    With this and the other polls showing the majority of the UK population supporting this, it is time for the Lib-Con coalition to put their ‘consideration’ of the matter into practise and grant this equality for all.

    I believe we may have to wait a little bit longer but we Will get this.

  5. There can be no doubt that this issue is moving fairly rapidly now. If the UK does this it will be a major step forward for other EU countries, many of whom will find it easier to follow on (Germany and France specifically are the big ones who need to do this as well).

  6. Simon Murphy 12 Aug 2010, 11:40am

    These results are entirely predictable. But refreshing to see them confirmed.

    Stonewall must look at these findings and start representing the views of the LGBT population and start demanding civil marriage equality.

    Otherwise they must disband.

    Unless they have changed their clearly homophobic support of civil partnership apartheid then they must be viewed as a homophobic organisation who are the enemy of those LGBT people who think that we deserve equal status under the law.

    When was the last time Stonewall did a poll like this to check on the wishes of the people they claim to represent?

    As for Labour Party, the LibDems and the Conservatives. Here is proof positive about what the LGBT populatiuon expect from you.

    Either you step up to the plate or you lose our vote.

  7. While this is clearly not a scientific sample (nothing like 22% of gay people are in CPs) the result – by its shere scale – is still pretty incontrovertible.

    And as I have argued elsewhere, there is a strong case for gay marriage quite apart from whether or not gay people are demanding it (as we clearly are).

    The reason why we have marriage as a legally and socially recognised institution is because it seen as, on the whole, socially beneficial.

    Straight married people should (I would have thought) also feel happier to have more married gay people as friends and neighbours.

    That said we will look a bit lame if we make a huge issue of gay marriage, get it, and then hardly anyone takes it up.

  8. Simon Murphy 12 Aug 2010, 12:22pm

    “That said we will look a bit lame if we make a huge issue of gay marriage, get it, and then hardly anyone takes it up.”

    Well that’s sort of irrelevant I think.

    Gay people as law-abiding, tax-paying citizens should have equal access to the legal contract of civil marriage as heterosexual people.

    Whether or not they avail of it is entirely up to them.

    Same sex couples should not be getting married to impress their heterosexual neighbour. Rather they should be getting married because they wish to do so.

    I am 100% behind CP legislation being extended to heterosexual couples also.

    A 2-tier Apartheid system of relationship recognition is a gross and unconscionable situation.

  9. I completely agree that equal marriage is long overdue.

    But can we all please stop with the Stonewall bashing? It is clear from these comment pages, and similar on things like Facebook, that there is an element of the “community” with a big chip on their shoulder about Stonewall.

    I don’t think Stonewall is perfect, but they make up over 1/3 of the LGBT charity sector and are the ONLY organisation taken seriously at government level on gay rights.

    Instead of bitchy infighting how about we all pull together and do our bit? Although they are the big player in the sector, Stonewall don’t have the resources to fight every fight all at once.

    To suggest that Stonewall be disbanded because they only fought for equality in the law on CPs but not full marriage (even though full marriage is now certain to happen) is completely ignoring all the fantastic work they do with schools, young people, employers and family info.

  10. With this excellent editorial, pinknews has shown it is the voice of the lgbt community not Stonewall. An organisation that colludes with homophobes to deny us our right to marry and ignores completely the rights or needs of the trans community

  11. Moderator’s note: this comment was posted by an IP address that has been traced back to Stonewall

    Author : Confused (IP: 62.133.3.30 , mail.stonewall.org.uk)

    I agree that eventually everyone should have the option to choose either CP or Marriage as the name seems important to some (including straight couples).

    However but sorry I’m a little confused – can someone tell me as a British gay man (not trans) what the difference will be between Civil Partnerships and ‘equal marriage’. Pink news and Lib Dems themselves keep throwing this about but other than the name what will actually be different?

    To me they are bigger fights to be won first.
    Moderator’s note: this comment was posted by an IP address that has been traced back to Stonewall
    Author : Confused (IP: 62.133.3.30 , mail.stonewall.org.uk)

  12. Simon.Murphy 12 Aug 2010, 2:18pm

    “that there is an element of the “community” with a big chip on their shoulder about Stonewall.”

    A group which believes that same sex couples be denied access to civil marriage because they are gay deserves to be condemned. This betrayal is compounded by the fact that they themselves are an LGB group.

    “they make up over 1/3 of the LGBT charity sector and are the ONLY organisation taken seriously at government level on gay rights.”

    Yet they point blank REFUSE to represent the 98% of the LGBT population who believe in marriage equality?

    “Although they are the big player in the sector, Stonewall don’t have the resources to fight every fight all at once.”

    But they refuse to support even the PRINCIPLE of marriage equality?

    I would be fully supportive of Stonewall if they actually represemted the views of the constuency they claim to represent.

    I have no personal axe to grind with them. They have done some sterling work in the past but this survey proves that they are now clearly out of date in their agenda.

    Their point blank refusal to support civil marriage equality renders them not fit for purpose as an LGBT equality organissation.

    Pink News’ survey shows that Stonewall’s position is out of step with 98% of the LGBT population.

    Therefore until they get with the equality agenda I think it’s only fair and reasonable that they disband.

  13. “Well that’s sort of irrelevant I think.

    Gay people as law-abiding, tax-paying citizens should have equal access to the legal contract of civil marriage as heterosexual people.

    Whether or not they avail of it is entirely up to them.”

    Whilst (obviously) everyone gay or straight should be free to choose whether or not to marry I don’t think the issue is quite as simple as you suggest.

    Marriage as an institution exists not just for the benefits of the people getting married but because, rightly or wrongly, it is held to be beneficial to society as a whole. Otherwise there would be no justification for privileging this one type of relationship over others. And marriage does obviously carry legal and social priveleges.

    This implies a view that it is, on the whole, a good thing for society for people to be married.

    One of the problems with the purely libertarian approach is that a lot of people taking free decisions in isolation can have a big cumulative effect, often unexpected, and sometimes good or sometimes bad.

    Would it matter if hardly anyone in our society got married? Personally I think it would, as I see marriage as party of the glue – often very flakey admittedly that helps hold society together. It’s not a case of people gay or straight getting married to “impress” their neighbours, but we do influence each other.

    Straight marriages have certainly influenced me, and one of many reasons I have a CP is to express my solidarity with marriage in general.

    I accept that others may disagree. I also accept that it’s perfectly consistent to campaign for the right to do something that you don’t actually want to do.

    But I stick by my point that if gay marriage is treated as the number one burning issue and then hardly anyone takes it up, then it will look rather odd.

  14. the comment traced back to stonewall doesn’t use the correct grammar plus they don’t even see what the issue is, they don’t see that CP’s are not equal to marriage or that many want marriage and consider Stonewall useless

  15. Well if we adopt the lib dem policy there will be a huge difference between CP and marriages.

    One major difference will be that no only gays will benefit but also straights. At the moment a different sex French CP/PACS must first divorce/dissoilve their CP in France and then get married in the UK. You can’t do both!. If they don’t then, for instance, they will pay 40% iht on all worldwide assets. Not fair on them and not fair on them to have to divorce in FRance and get married in the UK ….

    Not fair on British CPs who move to another country and have to equate themselves to a foreign civil union with lesser rights, rather than be equated to a foreing marriage with more rights. Remember the guys whose partners died in France and had to pay 60% iht, well if they had been married then the tax bill would have been zero. France recognises foreign marriages including gay ones as what they are and prior to may 2009 did recognise foreign CP, especially the British one becuase it was only open to gays…

    Names are important….CPs are not marriages

  16. Simon.Murphy 12 Aug 2010, 3:00pm

    “Editor’s note: this comment was posted by an IP address that has been traced back to Stonewall
    Author : Confused (IP: 62.133.3.30 , mail.stonewall.org.uk) ”

    HAHAHAHAHA

    How appalling!

    No wonder people don’t take Stonewall seriously anymore if they have to get their own staff to pose as members of the public to defend their indefensible position

  17. Half of me is shocked that someone working (I assume) at Stonewall doesn’t understand what the difference between civil partnerships (legally and consequentially) and marriage are. The other half resigned to fact they don’t take LGBT rights seriously.

    The effects on transgender couples. The international recognition issues. The equality issue. Etc. etc. There’s three off the top of my head without even thinking about it too much.

  18. Simon.Murphy 12 Aug 2010, 3:07pm

    “Half of me is shocked that someone working (I assume) at Stonewall doesn’t understand what the difference between civil partnerships (legally and consequentially) and marriage are. ”

    Oh Jae – they know FULL well the difference between CP’s and marriages.

    But as Pink News’s poll proves, Stonewall’s position reflects, the position of only a TINY minority of the LGBT population.

    So I suspect this ‘Confused’ poster is posing as an ordinary individual to create the fake impression that CP Apartheid is supportd by the LGBT population.

    Can anyone enlighten me on HOW Stonewall decides their agenda?

    From who do they seek feedback on the issues they should be campaigning for.

    The survey in Scotland and the Suvey in Pink News indicates that marriage equality is a matter of considerable importance for the LGBT population.

    Why are Stonewall so adamant in their refusal to support this?

    I guess the answer is simple. They are part of Gay Inc. Their proximity to those in power is FAR more important to them than reflecting the wishes of the community.

  19. Simon.Murphy 12 Aug 2010, 3:21pm

    Funny anecdote.

    Some weeks ago when Pink News did an article on allowing religions to perform CP’s in churches, I emailed Stonewall to ask them why they were campaigning for this, but refused to campaign for civil marriage equality.

    I got a reply stating that Civil marriage equality granted no additional rights to what CP’s offered.

    I replied asking what additional rights Religious CP’s offered.

    I got a reply stating that the additional rights granted by religious CP’s were that those couples who wanted to avail of religious CP’s would be able to access it.”

    I replied by asking why they weren’t campaigning for civil marriage equality so that “those couples who wanted to avail of civil marriage would be able to access it.”

    I got no response.

    Typical

  20. davevauxhall 12 Aug 2010, 5:14pm

    Well done Pink News for taking the initiative.

  21. Simon – on another Pink News article Stonewall does it by what they think will affect the most people who are LBGT and so they ignored what marriage is and means to people

  22. Of course, Stonewall don’t care about bisexuals or gay people still in the closet. It’s not surprising, really.

  23. What a pathetic attempt by Stonewall to sway the argument. Unquestionably PinkNews is showing itself to be the voice of our community.

    Stonewall collude with those opposed to full gay equality and are now on the losing side of the argument. Ironically the ConDems will probably legalise full gay marriage- opposed by Stonewall who were too close to the old New Labour regime. 

    Their opposition to full gay marriage may be related to their total lack of campaigning for trans issues. They continually ignore this important part of our community, insisting they only cater or fight for LGB equality not LGBT equality!

  24. Tim Hopkins 12 Aug 2010, 5:36pm

    It is of course not a question of whether other campaign issues are more important and so should be done first. We didn’t say that we couldn’t work on equal adoption law in 2002 because at that time we were still trying to get hate crime law and (in England and Wales) repeal of section 28. Obviously we work at the same time on several important issues.

    And the majority of LGBT people in Scotland consistently tell the Equality Network that equal marriage is one of their top three priorities. And that’s equally true for the people who are our network members, and for the 100s of LGBT people at Pride in Glasgow who we asked their priorities last month.

    The Equality Network is working hard on hate crime, better public services, stronger LGBT communities and equal marriage, to mention just a few. Our colleagues at LGBT Youth Scotland are working hard on bullying in schools, establishing LGBT youth groups across Scotland, and equal marriage, to mention just a few. It’s not a question of either/or.

  25. Bit off topic but…
    I really wish that we would stop using the “ban divorce” thing.
    Trapping people in abusive marriages is really not that rainbow-rific, mmm?
    No need to encourage the church and government to ruin anymore lives than it currently is.

  26. Simon.Murphy 12 Aug 2010, 8:56pm

    NEWSFLASH: Gay couples can get married in California from August 18th. Judge Walker is lifting the stay on that date.

    Hurrah!

  27. I do think the question posed by this paper is slightly biased in favour of a result they obviously set out to achieve. Of course I want to ‘equality’ but what really is equality??. I want to be respected in exactly the same sense as any straight person is, yes. I want to have the same rights as any straight person yes. However, I’m not straight, never will be and never want to be. When are we as gay people going to finally stop seeing this equality issue as simply being ‘wanting everything that straight people have got in this big straight world’…marriage is a dying institution established by oppressive religious agenda’s and often used as a formal method of ‘owning’ your partner under religious law. It also all too often fails….why the hell do we want to buy into that?! Before we all get into some crazy flap about this ‘gay marriage yes or no’ debate like it’s an episode of Ricky Lake we should really think about what makes us want to become part of a straight institution that fails society….Love the Civil Partnership. Just because someone says they’re not ‘for’ gay marriage certainly does not mean they’re not for equality…in fact they may well be more for a truer version of equality than people who are for gay marriage.

  28. Dr Boycock 13 Aug 2010, 6:50am

    Different, but equally concerning issue…

    Whats with all of this “Moderator’s note: this comment was posted by an IP address that has been traced back to Stonewall”???

    So, someone who works at Stonewall decided to comment on this website? So what? If they were representing the views of Stonewall, or they were making an official statement from Stonewall, then I am sure they would have issued a press release to that effect.

    Bit concerned at this printing and publishing someones IP address. I am sure that if they had wanted this done, they would have put their full name and address!

    This is a potentially serious issue and perhaps it might be a good idea for Pink News to state their policy on this matter so that everyone can be aware (before posting) what the possible consequences could be?

    As far as I can see, the posting box asks for certain information which, by giving, you are agreeing (could) be published. Where do we agree to have our IP addresses published on the internet? Perhaps a clearly stated ´Privacy Policy´ would be in order?

  29. Mihangel apYrs 13 Aug 2010, 7:05am

    ZoeK
    we say “ban divorce” to focus the minds of our opponents on what “traditional marriage” actually looks like (rathedr than the serial polygamy it has turned into in the US especially)

    Kevski

    we ask for marriage because that automatically brings so much, while CP. civil unions etc are all different depending on which country you’re in. As has been said, a UK CP is the equivalent in France of a French PACS, a lesser entity.

    All the laws concerning inheritance, mutually responsibility, etc are written as between spouses, the words “marriage” and “married” are used: one has to hope that in every case “CP” has been explicitly included, or can be implicitly included – something I’m not convinced will happen in the future.

    It’s also the case that various organisations are allowed to treat CP differently from marriage for staff benefits and pensions.
    I don’t want marriage for the gliter, I want it so that I have cast iron guarantees that my long term partner and I aren’t shafted financially or in other ways

  30. Kevski – not all British/foreign people with a British CPs live in the UK and not all people (gay and straight) in a partnership living and working in the UK are British and have a British CP or marriage.

    The person who was responsible at looking at the international aspect of the CP should have a big kick up the arse.

    CPs are not “gay” and marriages are not “straight”. Especially now when more countries are adopted gay marriages.

    PACS in france are open to straights, more straights do it than gays. They get huge benefits under a PACS eg instead of paying 60% iht they pay nothing, yet when they come and live in the UK this isn’t recognised at all. They get zilch, yet their gay counterparts have the same as us. Not exactly in the spirit of free movement of people within the EU!!. The only way they get benefits is by divorcing and getting married in the UK. CP must be made availbale to straights and therefore you would no LONGER BE SPECIAL, want do you want to define yourself when this happens or when you move abroad…I guess you can always stick a pink triangle on you clothes …..

    How to you think the CP will be treated in a foreing country where there is a gay marriage and a CP type thing? CP are so different in countries there may never be a consensus on a mutual recognition of them, why ought France to recognise the British CP when we refuse to recognise their straight ones. Marriages are recognised everywhere. You may not get your gay marriage recognised abroad but you are more likely to than a CP which is so specific to each country….

    Slighlty makes me sick when someone says what extra rights would we get if we had gay marriage ….who the hell respesents British people living and working abroad!

  31. Simon.Murphy 13 Aug 2010, 10:45am

    Dr Boycock: No 28: you say:

    “Whats with all of this “Moderator’s note: this comment was posted by an IP address that has been traced back to Stonewall”???
    So, someone who works at Stonewall decided to comment on this website? So what? ”

    The discussion at hand was about how out of touch with LGBT opinion Stonewall has chosen to be?

    The poster from Stonewall (Britain’s self-proclaimed leading LGBT equality group) did not identify him/herself as a Stonewall employee.

    The fact that he / she works for Stonewall but did not know the difference between Civil Partnereship and Civil Marriage indicates 1 of 2 things.

    1. Stonewall employs idiots

    OR

    2. He / she was deliberately rrying to create a false impression that more people were happy with civil partnership apartheid than is actually the case. This is the more likely scenario. It would be beyond belief if a Stonewall employee would not know the difference between marriage and CP.

    When you consider that Stonewall point-blank REFUSES to represent the views of the people they claim to represent (98% of LGBT people support marriage equality, Stonewall do not) I think it is entirely appropriate to expose them when they are trying to muddy a debate through underhand means.

    It’s time Stonewall released a statement indicating their precise position on marriage equality (their current non-position is completely unsustainable in light of the survey results by Pink News).

    If they continue to refuse to support marriage equality then they are acknowledging that they are a homophobic organisation and need to be exposed as such.

  32. Dr Boycock 13 Aug 2010, 1:06pm

    @31 Simon, You say…

    “The discussion at hand was about how out of touch with LGBT opinion Stonewall has chosen to be?

    The poster from Stonewall (Britain’s self-proclaimed leading LGBT equality group) did not identify him/herself as a Stonewall employee. ”

    Absolutely…. and I am raising the issue about ´outing´, if you will. As you said, the person did not identify themselves as a Stonewall employee. WHATEVER their reasons for doing so, is it now company policy at Pink News that a persons place of employment will be ´outed´ where they discover it?

    Has no-one here ever used their computer (for private communications) whilst at work?

    Whether or not “Stonewall employs idiots” or “He / she was deliberately rrying to create a false impression” or they were simply airing a private opinion is beside my point… If someone from Labour HQ decided to participate in a discussion here as a private individual, (whilst at work), is it now Pink News policy to ´out´ their place of work?

    If so, fair enough. This site belongs to Pinks News… But please, lets have a clear ´Privacy Statement´ for ALL to read stating this…. BEFORE someone chooses whether to make a comment or not.

    I realise you have a bug against Stonewall, and this time the ´outing´ suited your point… Equally, NEXT time, it may not!

    Lets have a clearly stated privacy policy from Pink News.

    Simple question… Does Pink News reserve the right to ´out´ someones place of employment or IP address if they make a comment on this site? (even if the comment is non-abusive or libellus)?

  33. Dr Boycock 13 Aug 2010, 1:16pm

    Further…. The point being that I, by posting, in the absence of a privacy statement by Pink News to the contrary, consent to my chosen ´name´, my given email address and a link to a website (if I choose to add one) being published…. I DO NOT consent to my IP address being published. As IP addresses are and can be a sensitive thing these days regarding the internet, whats their policy? Lets be knowing!

  34. The reason we disclosed that the message appeared to originate from a computer at Stonewall was because last week PinkNews offered all LGBT organisations to submit an article setting out their views on gay marriage. We promised to publish the article in full and un-edited by PinkNews.

    This is the appropriate way of setting out their views rather than posting as an anonymous reader. Rather than removing the comment, we allowed it to remain on the website with the note from the moderator to put the comment in context.

    The ip address merely identifies that the message was posted from a computer based at Stonewall. No personal information relating to the individual was posted.
    For the record we have always resisted handing personal data over without a court order. The information disclosed here is only for a corporate network

  35. Simon.Murphy 13 Aug 2010, 2:46pm

    My employment contract states that when I use my work email account then I am representing my company.

    This is standard practise for ALL employers and employees.

    So this individual was representing Stonewall but not identifying themselves as such. And the discussion at hand was about Stonewall.

    Therefore it was perfectly appropriate to ‘out’ them as a Stonewall employee.

    If he had been using his Hotmail or Gmail account then it would not have been appropriate to identify him.

  36. it doesn’t matter how many decide to go for marriage as long as the option is there, LBGT people look bad to many just for being LBGT!

  37. Dr Boycock 13 Aug 2010, 3:56pm

    Okay, thanks for the clarification. All users please note that you cannot post as a ´private individual´ whilst at work, or from a ´corporate network´, You might end-up being identified at work.

  38. Gosh when do we actually get to know what Stonewall/Sumerskill now think of gay marriage and whether they will take it on as one of their 2010 priorities….Can’t wait for those 400 word essays from the gay orgs…. but I agree with one of the posts somewhere on here or somewhere else, it said something like to hell with them if they don’t support gay marriage , the mps are the important ones and wasn’t this survey to do with them as well… I thought Jessica Green or someone earlier on said that they didn’t know we were asking for it, clearly the survey does show that we do and luckily PN are the ones reporting on it, their article get picked up by a lot of people including those from abroad. Just hope the guradian etc get on in the act as well!

  39. Simon.Murphy 13 Aug 2010, 11:08pm

    At least when politicians are doing interviews with the gay press from now on, they will not be able to use the tired old line ‘But gay people aren’t calling for marriage equality’.

    It can be pointed out quite truthfully to them ‘If you are referring to Stonewall please be aware that their current position represents that of a mere 2% of the LGBT population. They are massively out of touch with mainstream LGBT opinion on this issue’

  40. PinkNews writes:
    | Another issue, which affects smaller numbers of people, is
    | the cruelty of forcing trans men and women to divorce their
    | partners in order to be legally recognised in their new gender.
    | A country which values marriage should never allow this to
    | happen.

    Thanks for mentioning that. But could you please try to to write things with awareness that the law that is so wrong in respect of that divorce requirement (a major proportion of the Gender Recognition Act) is also wrong in other things, like talking of “new gender”, too.

    Perhaps mentioning that other things need rewriting when the Act is being amended to remove the marriage related stuff?

    In case, PinkNews, you really don’t know, the “new gender” stuff was a deliberate slap across the face of those who know they have always had the same gender, were born with it. Even though the European Court of Human Rights judgment that required the legislation was based on there being evidence of the inborn nature of transsexuality, so that that court ruled that it was no longer safe to assume it was not inborn (its illegal under the Convention to discriminate against inborn attributes). There’s substantially more evidence now.

    That’s in only respect of transsexuality, by the way, not “transgender”. No one can get any meaningful research results for “transgender” because it such an undefined umbrella term.

    Other huge problems with the act are the requirement for a mental disorder diagnosis, the compulsory register (sister to the sex offenders register), the exclusion of under-18s, the lack of provision for people living overseas, the way it clashes with immigration or asylum requirements, the way post-SRS people can be left still legally unrecognized, the permanently retained dossier of most intimate sexual details, the denial of privacy (which can be a life and death matter), the easily understood new certificates, the failure to amend or seal old records. That’s quite a list, yes?

  41. Caspar:
    > And as I have argued elsewhere, there is a strong case for
    > gay marriage quite apart from whether or not gay people are
    > demanding it (as we clearly are).
    >
    > That said we will look a bit lame if we make a huge issue of gay
    > marriage, get it, and then hardly anyone takes it up.

    It isn’t gay marriage any more thats at issue, its equal marriage. Catch up.

    We need and want equality. Rqual marriage is key to that.

  42. jim:
    > What a pathetic attempt by Stonewall to sway the argument.
    > …
    > Their opposition to full gay marriage may be related to their
    > total lack of campaigning for trans issues. They continually
    > ignore this important part of our community, insisting they only
    > cater or fight for LGB equality not LGBT equality!

    Its not gay marriage at issue, its equality of access to marriage. And they have not been fighting for equality; they have been opposing it in marriage and other respects, telling legislators and government that it isn’t wanted or needed.

    So, we who might be seen as covered by “T” don’t want Stonewall campaigning for us, thanks all the same. We can see how they misrepresent people. We have seen them specifically work against us and mock us.

    In Scotland, where they do claim to represent T, Simon Callow, one of their leading figures, told the BBC the only issue that remained needing action was homophobic bullying – with us facing dozens of serious problems, not least transphobic bullying. Even if all they did were stick a T on the end in England and Wales it would be unwelcome.

    All I would ask from Stonewall, in respect of trans issues, once they have stopped opposing equal marriage, which affects trans people, and affects me as a lesbian too, is that they start to have the minimal manners of a human rights group towards others’ human rights. Acknowledging, when they put out documents or statements, when people, used to groups that cover trans too, might be expecting them to cover trans matters, that they don’t and haven’t.

    Like, when they are campaigning on homophobic bullying they shouldn’t claim it is the worst bullying when transphobic bullying starts much younger and is more remorseless, and should acknowledge that there is also transphobic bullying, which isn’t the same.

    Presently people tend to assume that they are either saying there is no transphobic bullying, or there are no transsexual kids but simply lesbian or gay who have gone too far (a common hate theme)

    Or, as another example, when they are dishing out equality awards they might make clear that treating LGBs decently isn’t the only hurdle that good employers should meet (there’s racism, disability, sexism, as well as transphobia too) but its the only one they are assessing.

    You get the picture?

  43. > Whats with all of this “Moderator’s note: this comment was
    > posted by an IP address that has been traced back to
    > Stonewall”???

    It seems to me excellent that PinkNews realised and pointed out that Stonewall were doing their usual anti-equality campaigning (“Its not needed, there’s no demand for it”) in an underhand manner on these comments pages. Their social standing and their jobs hang on their credibility with government, and they face that disappearing when it is realised that Stonewall have been wrong in claiming we are mostly suckers who don’t want equality, and that Stonewall has been giving bad advice simply in order to undercut other groups by providing the easy option, the discriminatory option.

    Of course, it does mean, for them to have spotted that that misuse of the comments system, PinkNews is sifting the IP addresses of comments against a list of known sources. I just wonder who else they are watching out for (government ministries, parliament, party headquarters, evangelical and muslim groups? Are they watching for overseas ones or only British?), or has Stonewall particularly elected themselves to that watched status?

  44. I think I’d be happy with Stonewall just saing that 98% of lgbt have hown they want gay marriage, that additional rights can be obtained by bringing in gender neutral marriages and CPs, especially for British people living and working abroad and foreingner coming to live here and finally straights have got used to the word CPs without any uproar and no longer needed to be educated on the fact that gays are normal, they exists in all society and have relationships …

    As for campaingning for it then their hearts aren’t in it anyway so it would probably be counterproductive, there are others more vocal anyway….Anyway as people have pointed out there’s a place for them and they’re campainging for other useful things, I guess their sponsors and funders would have some say and they get a lot more money from them that sponsors walks etc….

    I guess just support it and don’t say anything negative about it…

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