A recent vote in the House of Commons gave a big thumbs up for same sex marriage, but there is still a wait before it becomes Law with more potential obstacles in the way.
David Cameron is proposing that same sex marriage becomes Law in 2014, so there is still a year or so to go. This gives those opposing same sex marriage time to gather their thoughts and try to stop it.
Of course the House of Lords have to have the final say, and that could be a bit of a worry.The House of Lords is made up of older people with a stronger view of tradition and they don’t always vote with the views of the country in mind, they voted for the Poll Tax remember!! They do, however tend to vote the same way as the MP’s, so as long as there is no change to the voting system in the House of Commons, there shouldn’t be any problems, but if it is not a free vote then there could be trouble.
David Cameron has already put his head on the political chopping block by pursuing this issue. The Conservative Party are in uproar as it goes against Party policy. There have even been suggestions that he will be ousted as party leader before the next election in 2015.
If the next vote is not a free vote, here is what could happen.
Labour are likely to vote for. This would be a move to increase their votes in the 2015 General Election. They might need all of the help they can get, bearing in mind that they are being blamed for the state of the economy and the country as a whole. they might find that the British public are forgiving enough as the Coalition are not getting the remedy right.
The Tories are likely to vote against. They are of the opinion that they can win the next election and are not happy that David failed to win the last one outright. They think that they can stay with their traditional party values, vote aginst same sex marriage, and count on their regular voters in the next election despite the fact that these voters were not enough to win the last election outright.
The Lib Dem’s could go either way. If they want to stay onside with the Tories then they might vote against. However, a vote against the Tories could mean more votes in 2015 and would be within their party views. When you factor in the other parties it could go either way but I think UKIP and the Green Party will probably vote in favour of same sex marriage.
The other major influence is ,of course, the religious element. The Churches are not going to roll over and allow same sex marriage to happen quietly. When the debate was raging about LGBT couples adopting children, the Churches, who run a large majority of the adoption agencies, threatened to close the childrens’ homes to prevent what they viewed as unethical and wrong. The church is still of the opinion that being Gay is the work of Satan and everybody needs protecting from such evil. This opinion, however, is not shared by many outside the church as a recent YouGov poll suggests that 55% of the British population agrees that people in the same sex couples should be allowed to legally marry, certainly the people with whom I have had the conversation with are of this opinion and their reasoned response is always ‘ Why shouldn’t they, it doesn’t affect me in any way’. This isn’t said in a negative way, or a ‘who cares’ way but just an honest and blunt response to the conversation. I have also been watching the debate unfold on-line and following some of the comments left on certain sites and I am shocked and somewhat amazed at the thoughts and opinions of some people. There were a lot of comments about the religious consequence of same sex marriage but there were a few who just thought that their opinion of it just being wrong was okay, even though they had no argument to base this on. Those who agree have more valid arguments than those who don’t agree, especially when you remove religion from the equation.
The religious arguments are the same as they were when the adoption issue was raised and that became law, I have seen no fire and brimstone since then and I don’t expect to see it after the first same sex marriage either.
I am looking forward to being invited to a Gay wedding in the near future and I am looking forward to living in a country which is totally anti-discriminatory.
By Emma Pollard.