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Savidge Opinion – Don’t Rain on the Parade

On the 1st September, Cardiff will be celebrating the first Mardi Gras Parade the city has ever seen. In many ways this is indeed something to celebrate and highlighted, yet there is a part of me, and indeed some of my friends, whom wonder ‘so what?’  I don’t say that to belittle what the organisers are doing, or the fact that it is the first time the Welsh capital is doing such a thing, but do we as LGBT people need to make a big hoo-ha about it or should it just be seen as the norm? After all… we are making some great steps forward… aren’t we?
I know as a gay man just how lucky I am to live in the UK. It is no longer illegal that I happen to fancy and fall in love with someone of the same sex; I won’t get stoned for it. We can adopt children, which is an incredible breakthrough considering society once labelled all gay men as virtual paedophiles. We can get ‘married’ through a civil partnership, even if  as yet we still can’t be married in some religion’s eyes.
Some people don’t want to get a C.P. and that is their choice, whilst some sneer at the very notion.  However, it would be interesting to see how the latter people felt if their long-term partner was in a coma and they had no say as to what happened to them.  Because,  in the eyes of the law, no matter how long a gay couple has been together, your opinion doesn’t count, it’s more likely that their ‘family’ would be left with the decision. Sorry to be bit gloomy but these are real concerns I think should be taken into account.
With regard to the whole full on church wedding, issue. Some say it is only a matter of time, I am more of a ‘let’s not hold our breath’ onlooker. For me, if marriage of two people of the same sex were allowed under the roof of a church and that couples rights were the same as a straight one, then we would have made true progress. We always want more though don’t we? I think I would settle for gay couples gaining ‘common law’ spouse rights, that would be much more important.
Therefore, getting back to Cardiff’s Mardi Gras and parade through the city. Perhaps visibility is what we need to get that equality. Perhaps we should all be there shouting out and demanding more and to turn a religious teaching on its head… show me where the f@cking meek have inherited the Earth!