ABBOTT BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE
Renny Carter, 53, is an old journo and one of the Liberal Party's faceless men, who has opinions on anything and everything in contemporary life.
I don't know about you but I'm heartily sick of having this gay marriage thing brought to the fore every time something unpalatable or unanswerable happens in Parliament. Every time Shorton Brains gets asked a curly one like, “Were you corrupt?" he immediately jumps on to the gay marriage wagon. It's gone on for months. Years. Maybe decades.
Now I've known my share of gay people. Who of us hasn't. Some are delightful people. Some are arseholes. Better make that pricks. Bugger - better make that cretins. But I know just as many hetero people who fall into the same categories. People are people.
Most decent homosexual people get on with their lives like the rest of us. Their afterhours predilections are of no concern to us - they don't wave it in our faces. So who cares about their living arrangements? It's none of our business. Just like our sexual conquests are no concern of theirs. If they want to get married - well so what?
I live in a village where we have more gay people than most places. I don't know what the percentage is but I'm pretty well surrounded by both gender preferences on all flanks. There's nice ones and bitchy ones. If you're nice I will treat you like anyone else, if you aren't I will walk by with my nose in the air. Simple. Same as if you were heterosexual.
I have had several as friends. One (gay lady) got jealous every time I turned up with the wife until it became downright uncomfortable so we gave her the flick. This particular lady subscribed to the theory that all women are latent lesbians intent on gaining the affections and embrace of their partner. Which of course is bullshit.
I've had male gay friends who also subscribe to the idea that all men can be turned gay. I took issue with one once and said, “NO! I have never had any gay leanings and never will. It's not my thing. And that's how the majority of men feel - trust me!" And only when he had a house full of over(t)ly camp bottom trawlers in his house who made a ribaldry explicit show of their affections in front of everybody, did I feel extreme discomfort and take myself yon. It would have been just as offensive had they been heterosexuals.
I felt a similar revulsion when a woman in a purple crushed velvet dress, Blundstone boots and a knitted hat decided to conduct an overtly open demonstration of breast feeding her eight year-old son on the footpath at our street folk festival. Despite him sitting on his bicycle while she did it. She then turned the other one over to the daughter who must have been in the fifth grade. The kid had an I-Pad for Chrissakes! But a woman discreetly breast feeding is a perfectly normal part of life. It's the “I am woman - look at 'moi' thrill seekers” that sort of ruin it.
The trouble with getting governments over the line on this issue is the churches. Despite Australia seeing its lowest ecclesiastical attendances since Captain Cook came here, people still write their religion on important things. "Hasn't been to church for 76 of his 84 years - but he was an Anglican all his life!" Bit like the politician who suddenly becomes Prime Minister - bang! There they are at church again. With the wife in tow. Kevin Rudd, at church every Sunday when PM, hasn't even driven past one since. Pffft!
No “Gumment” can be seen to say “yes” to something that the bible expressly forbids. (Don't worry - the lasting effect of Sunday School has rubbed off on me too.) I can still quote the chapter and verse. It's in there somewhere -
"Thou shalt not take it up the Cadbury's lest ye be turned into a pillar of salt". Pretty sure that's the intent anyway.
So if a parliament says it's open slather to the gays and they can get married and have babies with donated sperm and wombs and stuff, they are in effect thumbing their noses at the Papacy and the Anglicacy. And all the other clergies. And God as we know him. The bible is full of warnings about kapok crunching and skirt lifting. Thou shalt not do it seems to be the repeated theme. So a Parliament that reads the Lord's prayer in its inner sanctums before it decides on the Nation’s fate - cannot be seen to be flying in the face and the sanctity of the very book they swear their allegiance on. It's a bloody dilemma!
As far as normal people are concerned though, nobody gives a fig about whether gays get married or not. It makes no difference to the world as we know it. Some people I am sure are born gay. They have no control over “it”. One of my closest friends these days is a lesbian. I love her dearly. I asked her once if she had ever been tempted to the other side of the fence and she practically threw up on my cappuccino.
So I then realised that she was “made that way” and that's how it must be.
Adding weight to the theory, I went to school with blokes who would gaze wistfully into the “home economics” class wishing they could join all “those lucky bitches in there”. In woodwork they would prefer to finger knit and daydream about making over their bedrooms. And the moment they left school they rushed to the nearest department store to get jobs in the window dressing department. So gay-ness is something I think you are born with.
Mind you, we have two guys in our town, one was married with two kids quite happily for 20 years until one day he was working on a building (he's a tradesman) and what I believe is referred to as a “hairy bear twink” (I looked it up) walked past and all hope was dashed right there. Love at first sight. He went home, gave the missus and the billy-lids the Khyber Pass and rushed into the arms of his new lover - where he remains to this very day. So maybe you can acquire “it”. Either way no-one really gives a bugger in this day and age.
But governments can't do it because next thing you have George Pell beating your door down. OK, not a good choice - make that the Archbishop of Canberra. And that is why 2% of Americans are trying to change what the other 98% of Americans are sticking to their guns on. Meanwhile the Norways and Swedens just sign the bloody Bill and say “go for it”. Progressive sexuality has always been their strong suit.
But Tony will get over the line. One day maybe. And thank Christ the likes of Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard (who said she was against it) didn't have to do the dirty deed.