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Video: New Zealand Parliament breaks into song as equal marriage bill is passed

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  1. bobbleobble 17 Apr 2013, 4:35pm

    Wow, I found that incredibly moving, congratulations New Zealand.

    1. Me too the singing made my eyes well up with tears. Really beautiful.

      1. Tears in my eyes as well, Pavlos!

        I wonder if something similar will happen IF the SSM Bill is passed in the House of Commons next time round.

        1. Grumpy Gay 17 Apr 2013, 7:15pm

          I watched live from the UK this morning and I too became very emotional. It is amazing news for not only LGBT NZers but for all of us. Uruguay last week, NZ today, hopefully France next week and then the UK. Third Reading in House of Commons to take place soon. Fingers crossed we LGBT Brits will also be able marry shortly.

          1. Colin (London) 18 Apr 2013, 4:25am

            I cryed while watching it as well. I’m in NZ at the moment and 2 straight NZ friends called me to congratulate us as a community. To me NZ is a wonderful country with good people. I’ve been comming here for 25 years and am thinking of retiring here.

  2. For some reason I just started crying. I’m not usually emotional. At least some countries understand love. Well done New Zealand for being human.

  3. Robert in S. Kensington 17 Apr 2013, 4:46pm

    Astoundingly stunning and beautiful. There hasn’t been anything quite like it in any country where equal marriage has passed. Emotion overcame me while watching and listening. Truly historic. Meanwhile, we in the UK languish living in uncertainty and today we have been put to shame by another very significant commonwealth country after Canada and South Africa. Those opposing Tories in both houses should be ashamed of themselves.

    1. bobbleobble 17 Apr 2013, 4:58pm

      I have a theory as to why so little is happening here just yet and it’s all to do with the Parliament Act. The PA cannot be used for any bill which is sent up to the Lords within a month before the end of a Parliamentary session. if they had pushed ahead with the report stage as soons as the committee stage ended then the bill probably would have fallen into this time frame.

      Parliament reopens on 8th May so I suspect that for the avoidance of any issues they are holding the bill over and won’t send it to the Lords until the next session of Parliament so that it doesn’t fall foul of this rule and the PA remains a viable option should it be needed.

      1. Spanner1960 17 Apr 2013, 5:19pm

        I just hope to God they are not forced to use the PA, or I will be seriously pissed off at the government’s lack of integrity.
        We need to win this battle fair and square, without having to pull out some ‘get out of jail free’ card.
        Otherwise you know we will never hear the last of it and the naysayers will whinge on forever and a day saying it was an unfair ruling.

        1. Robert in S. Kensington 17 Apr 2013, 6:10pm

          Well, Maria Miller hasn’t ruled out using the PA. She said so on the day of the vote in the Commons. So if she has to, then so be it. It still means we’ll get equal marriage later rather than sooner. The naysayers are predictable. Even if it miraculously passes by a small majority in the Lords, nothing will ever content them. Uruguay, France, NZ and today Colombia will vote. The Lords can only bury their heads in the sand for so long. The inevitable is coming whether they like it or not.

          1. Time perhaps to start thinking of an appropriate song to sing? What would it be? I just can’t think of a single unifying song . . . apart from “Jerusalem” or “I Vow to Thee My Country” but they’re far too formal surely?

          2. Spanner1960 17 Apr 2013, 7:51pm

            I would prefer it later and right, than rushed through and ballsed up like they did with civil partnerships.
            We have waited this long, we can wait a bit longer if it means getting it right.

          3. bobbleobble 17 Apr 2013, 8:18pm

            Spanner two points. Firstly none of the Lords I’ve heard objecting are doing so because they want to get the legislation right but rather because they don’t want gay people to get married full stop. If the Lords rejects the bill and the government shy away from using the Parliament Act then SSM may never happen in this country.

            Second, what do you mean they ballsed up civil partnerships? You do know the Lords voted in favour of those right?

            There is nothing wrong with using the Parliament Act. Sure it’s controversial but the whole point is that the Lords isn’t allowed to veto Commons bills anymore. If they try to act as if they can then there needs to be a mechanism to get around that.

          4. @Eddy: An appropriate song?

            “All You Need Is Love.”

          5. The Lords are unelected – unless it is replaced by a democratic Upper House then it has no mandate to interfere with Commons legislation.

            The House of Lords needs to be replaced and a separation of church and state is urgently needed.

        2. bobbleobble 17 Apr 2013, 8:14pm

          Spanner, how is use of the Parliament Act a lack of integrity? Use of the Parliament Act IS fair and square, it ensures that the will of the democratically elected Commons takes precedence over the unelected Lords. And quite frankly I couldn’t care less what the naysayers whine about so long as I am able to marry and I don’t understand why you do. The Parliament Act isn’t a get out of jail free card, it’s a tried and tested part of our constitution.

          Dont forget Blair was forced to use the Parliament Act to get the equal age of consent through the Lords and I haven’t heard a peep about that since.

      2. Robert in S. Kensington 17 Apr 2013, 6:05pm

        Interesting point you raised and probably right, bobbleobble. Imagine if we had New Zealand’s Parliamentary system it would have been guaranteed passage into law if the 400-175 vote is anything to go by. NZ has no upper chamber to contend with.

        1. Having an upper chamber is useful. Having an upper chamber of unelected, religious, bigots makes a mockery of democracy and (@Spanner), is what truly “lack[s] integrity”.

          1. The House of Lords is truly a joke.

            It is inherently undemocratic.

            It’s time to replace it.

  4. Robert in S. Kensington 17 Apr 2013, 5:07pm

    Listen to this marvellous delivery by New Zealand MP today.

    1. Thanks for the link Rob, excellent.

    2. Great speech, really clever.

      The item will drop down the blog list, so here’s the direct link

  5. Spanner1960 17 Apr 2013, 5:15pm

    Fantastic news.
    It seems this came out of nowhere, but I’m sure many people have worked long and hard to achieve it, so well done to all concerned.

    Hopefully this will now stick two fingers up at Australia in the hope it might eventually decide to drag itself out of the dark ages and do the same.

  6. New Zealand is a gorgeous, amazing country with super friendly welcoming people. It’s consistently been voted one of the best places in the world to live in.
    It just got better and this will up it’s ranking in the world! Congratulations New Zealand! It’s another feather in your cap!

  7. Robert in S. Kensington 17 Apr 2013, 6:01pm

    I wonder how the Queen will feel when the legislation comes across her desk for Royal Assent. What an embarrassment for our government if by the time it reaches her, ours may face a delay by the Lords. Let’s hope by the time it happens, we will have legalised equal marriage too.

    1. lukefromcanada 17 Apr 2013, 6:27pm

      it doesnt go to the queen it goes to the gov general her rep in new zealand and he has to sign it he cannot veto it

    2. Is there chance, do you think, that some lukewarm part of those aged old hearts in the Lords will be moved by today’s reports from New Zealand, moved to bestow something similar upon us here?

  8. I can’t tell you how this made me so happy, so proud and so many tears too.

    Thank you New Zealand for showing the world the way.

  9. Kelvin Beer-Jones 17 Apr 2013, 8:17pm

    I posted it to the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Facebook page as “See what a real message of hope and love looks like”.

    BTW why don’t we all join his Facebook page and post nice stuff there?

  10. Soooo cool .Shows the world how a civilised country should behave.

  11. That brought a lump to my throat, tears in my eyes. well done New Zealand!

  12. When people burst into songs of love and joy, you know you got it right. Bravo New Zealand – here’s hoping Australia gets it right next.

  13. Colin (London) 18 Apr 2013, 4:32am

    I cryed as well. I’m in NZ just now. 2 of my straight NZ friends called me to wish us the gay community congratulations. So lovely eh. The people of NZ are just wonderful spirited people and they have a matching beautiful country. Been comming here for 25 years and may retire here. Congratulations wonderful New Zealand.

  14. GingerlyColors 18 Apr 2013, 7:36am

    Two countries in the Southern Hemisphere in the space of a week legalise gay marriage. Brilliant!
    Over to you, David Cameron.

  15. Frank Boulton 18 Apr 2013, 8:52am

    As a Brit living in New Zealand could I point out the significance of the song. Although it is about the real-life love of the woman Hinemoa and the man Tutanekai, there is a gay secondary theme. Before he fell in love with Hinemoa, Tutanekai had a male lover called Tiki and before such practices we brutally suppressed by Europeans, same-sex relationships were held in high respect by the Maori. MP Te Ururoa Flavell movingly explained that for this reason and because under British law Maori customary marriage was deemed void and the children of such unions were declared illegitimate with devasting results. And of course it is just such an incredibly beautiful love song. I hope our success last night lends weight to similar campaigns in other countries, especially my native England. If you thought that it was moving, imagine what it was like to watch it live with my local LGBTI club. You’ll get there, too. Aroha.

    1. Aroha nui!

    2. Colin (London) 21 Apr 2013, 12:06pm

      Thank you for the education. it meant a lot to me for many reasons. Best wishes to you and New Zealand

  16. I seem to have gotten a little equality in my eye :)

  17. Coco van Gent / Holland 19 Apr 2013, 12:37pm

    Congratulations New Zealand, I’m proud of you!!

  18. Kay from Wellington, NZ 19 Apr 2013, 1:01pm

    It was a wonderful night in New Zealand’s Parliament. We queued outside the security entrance for over an hour in the rain to get into the public gallery. (See me in the UK Guardian pics next to a Gaga fan). But one hour after a 27 year struggle? That’s how long it has been since homosexual relations between men were decriminalised in 1986.

    We next achieved human rights protections against discrimination at work in 1993. Then we campaigned for civil unions and achieved that in 2004. We wanted marriage equality but we didn’t have the numbers in Parliament. So the idea of this being rushed through, or achieved quickly, isn’t right ;-)

    It was wonderful to see and hear the singing on You-Tube, but it was even more glorious to be in the gallery hearing the speeches, feeling the love, and joining in the singing at the end.

    With each law change, the fears of ignorant people opposing human rights and equality have diminished and their opposition has been quieter. :-)

  19. Kay from Wellington, NZ 19 Apr 2013, 1:09pm

    The vote was 77 Ayes and 44 Noes, not 70 and 44 as it says in the article.

    More numbers? New Zealand’s Parliament has 121 MPs with 3 out gay men and 3 out lesbians. One of the gay men – Chris Finlayson is a conservative Catholicand said to be a member of Opus Dei – he voted against marriage equality. The others voted for equality.

    Some MPs also referred to LGBTIQ family members in their speeches, mostly with pride when saying why they supported the Bill. The speech by deaf MP Mojo Mathers is particularly moving in her support for her daughter taking a girlfriend to her school ball.

  20. Jeff Yes I'm Gay and in NZ 19 Apr 2013, 9:33pm

    I have a question! Will the status be recognized by countries that don’t have equal marriage? It could lead to discrimination and worse if they are travelling as husband and husband or wife and wife. Some countries won’t allow men to even share a bed in a hotel.

    1. Kay from New Zealand 20 Apr 2013, 3:49am

      That is a matter for the other country to decide, just as New Zealand has previously not recognised same sex marriages performed in other countries. It is unlikely that a country that doesn’t have its own version of marriage equality would recognise ours. It would be impossible for a country that criminalise homosexual activities to recognise NZ’s more humane laws. Check the ILGA (dot org) website for country details.

      The New Zealand Births, Deaths, and Marriages office – part of the Department of Internal Affairs – will probably prepare advice on overseas recognition as part of the electronic advice and paperwork needed to get ready for the implementation of the law changes. See contact details on the Government website and get in touch with your query, they will update the information as it comes to hand.

  21. I was moved by this ………. congrats to a mature parliament and to the citizens who will benefit from this most noble move.

    Luv from Jamaica

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