After months of campaigning, the postal survey on marriage equality is finally over and Yes has triumphed with an impressive 61.6 per cent of voters saying they support rights of LGBTI people to marry.
But let us not forget that those months of campaigning were made awful for us by the No campaign and many of its supporters.
And so it was with joy, today, that we cheered for Yes and got to witness the No side eat crow as their insistence on a ‘silent majority’ was quietly laid to rest today.
RIP The Silent Majority, 2013-2017. At least you outlasted Tony Abbott’s Prime Ministership.
Speaking of Tony, his comments today don’t remotely reflect the aggressiveness of his campaigning, which denigrated the relationship of his sister Christine Forster, included giving a speech to an anti-LGBTI hate group, and saw him insist that gays aren’t discriminated against anymore.
Despite all this, he today said that the postal survey “process has been a credit to us as a nation” while thanking “the 4.7 million Australians who supported marriage between a man and a woman” and calling for the ability to discriminate against same-sex couples to be enshrined in law.
Cory Bernardi, meanwhile, began an email blast to his supporters by trying to spin the result into a positive – that “nearly 40% of Australians voted NO to redefining marriage.”
Bernardi is also calling for Parliament to be suspended until the citizenship crisis is resolved in an attempt to delay introduction of Dean Smith’s same-sex marriage bill.
Cory Bernardi in the Senate a few moments ago. We’re tracking the political reaction to the #SSM survey result in the blog, including the introduction of legislation later this afternoon. https://t.co/8BaLGSh2uR @CooperJed @abcnews pic.twitter.com/pXdCCDpQDh
— Henry Belot (@Henry_Belot) November 15, 2017
It’s important to read these reactions, because we only have so long to amuse ourselves with their forced contrition before the next campaign against our rights begins.
The Marriage Alliance has claimed that the Yes result came about thanks to “the huge media bias against the ‘No’ campaign'” and against supporters of “true marriage”, even though the No campaign was mentioned in mainstream news stories four times as often as the Yes campaign.
The Coalition for Marriage, meanwhile, have vowed to continue fighting “to protect Australian kids from being exposed to radical LGBTIQ sex and gender education in classrooms,” saying that their supporters “cannot be discouraged”.
No campaign spokesperson Lyle Shelton complained that “democracy hasn’t gone our way today but I thank God that we live in a free and open, democratic society.”
Shelton tried to downplay the Yes result by arguing that the Yes campaign has been operating in some form for over a decade.
“They have been relentless in this … they have seen the fruit of their relentlessness and being involved in the political process,” he said, as though there haven’t been organisations like his Australian Christian Lobby fighting against the progress of LGBTI rights for just as long.
Andrew Bolt’s hot take was to damn marriage equality advocates for fighting against the postal survey in the first place, accusing the Yes campaign of “sheer thuggery”.
“Australians clearly wanted the say that so many on the Left were so determined to deny them,” he wrote, even though the postal survey merely affirmed what numerous opinion polls already suggested.
Today isn’t just a day to celebrate our love and the Yes result; it’s a day to cackle wildly, glass of rosé in hand, as the No campaign retreats with its tail between its legs.
It’s a day to giggle at the No campaign event this morning being labelled a “sad funeral”.
It’s a day to laugh at all the ridiculous nonsense we’ve endured for the past few months – and, indeed, the many years this battle has taken.
Because, finally, it’s nearly over.