It’s the fight that won’t go away and advocacy group Australian Marriage Equality (AME) has now called on both sides of the political divide to come out for same-sex marriage.
The call follows a statement by former High Court justice Michael Kirby, at the International Queer Studies Conference in Brisbane this month, questioning the lack of action on gay marriage in Australia.
“The present federal Government have not thought it timely to attack the issue [of legalising gay marriage],” the ABC reported Kirby as saying.
“It has also been agitated in the trade union movement but so far it hasn’t secured anybody in the federal Parliament, in the Labor Party, to champion the cause.
“At the moment they are hiding their heads and they are not doing much about it.”
AME national convenor Alex Greenwich told Sydney Star Observer it’s up to the GLBTI community to make a stand at election time.
“Unfortunately we have leaders who are so strongly against same-sex marriage and people in those parties, even if they supported it, are not welcome to put their views forward,” he said.
“What the GLBTIQ community needs to do is to look at parties where we do have some options. There are parties out there that support same-sex marriage and we need to make our views known at the ballot box, because [federal politicians are] just not getting it.”
Greenwich said, from his years of lobbying Labor and Liberal MPs, there is silent support in some quarters for same-sex marriage.
“Look no further than the low turnout in the Senate for [the Marriage Equality (Amendment) Bill], senators like Louise Pratt have been very vocal on same-sex marriage and there is support in the lower house with Peter Garrett, who has shown support in the past.”
During Kirby’s conference address he said that although he and his partner of 41 years would probably not consider marrying at this stage, he understood why other gay and lesbian couples wanted the right to marriage equality.
Kirby also praised the honesty of Latino pop sensation Ricky Martin for recently coming out, saying it was a courageous move and he would “trade 10 judges of the highest court for one person like Ricky Martin”.

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