Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, has been heavily criticised by gay people, after he posted a Valentine’s message on his facebook page yesterday, eulogising his relationship and marriage to his wife, Lucy.
“When I first asked Lucy to marry me she said, “Let’s wait until we grow up.” Well we didn’t wait long and now it is almost impossible to imagine, let alone remember, what it was like not to be together, so much so that I have a much clearer sense of “Lucy and me” than I do of “me””.
Mr Turnbull is backing a plebiscite on gay marriage, rather than a free vote in parliament, to see whether his government should bring in equal marriage.
However, tweeters in support of equal marriage have pointed out that a plebiscite is ‘neither financially responsible nor binding’, that many of his ministers have vowed to ignore the outcome of a plebiscite, and that his statement is hypocritical in view of the fact that he “claimed to support [gay marriage] before coming into power, yet now pleasing the factions appears to be your only priority”.
One tweeter, Douglas McFarland parodied his comment by saying: “When I first asked my partner to marry me, he said let’s wait till our government lets us’..”
Another tweeter, Evelyn Gray, says she is saddened that her gay daughter is still waiting for the same right as her sister, to be able to marry the love of her life.
Ron Van Houwelingen had a lot to say including this: “While you and your Government continue to treat a certain section of the population as second class citizens under the law, you send a very dangerous message to LGBTI people that they, and their love and relationships are worth less”. [..]
“It’s patently clear that the majority of Australians support Marriage Equality, and before your appointment as PM, you lead us to believe that you did too”.
He also said that he and his partner had been together for over 20 years, still waiting for marriage equality:
“My partner Antony & I are celebrating our 29th Valentine’s Day together today. We are so very glad that we have found a soulmate in one another, and to have been able to share our lives together for so many years. But what we would really like is to be able to celebrate that love through marriage, just like you and Lucy”.
Below are more of the comments:
Tomas Allan Leaumont: “Well because of you and your party I will never know what it will be like to marry my parter of nearly 10 years. So happy for you both..”
Lisa Browne: “Hang in there Tomas – I am very confident that Malcolm Turnbull will change this. He has to get an election won in his own right and then I expect we will see a lot of reform. He has to move softly, softly with those blue blooded ol’ boys in the party room at the moment. Here’s wishing you all the best and a wedding within the next 18 months”.
Douglas McFarland: “When I first asked my partner to marry me, he said let’s wait till our government lets us…and now, four years later, we have to wait until 51 per cent of the country lets us (and then the government [c]an still reject it)…you and Lucy are beautiful together, an inspiring couple…just wish your leadership was more inspiring on Marriage. We all know you get it, we all know you want it, we all know you are spinning political bs when you support the plebiscite. Perhaps Valentine’s day is the perfect day to scrap the plebiscite! Happy Valentine’s day to you both, it must be a lovely reminder of your marriage. As opposed to the constant reminder that same sex couples love is less!”
Evelyn Gray: “Congratulations on your happy marriage. I’m very lucky also to have been married for over 40 years. However, my husband and I are saddened that our gay daughter is still waiting for the same right as her sister; the right to marry the love of her life. No plebiscite please – a free vote in Parliament is all it will take!”
Brad Wolfe: “Lucky you can get married. How about a free vote on marriage equality instead of wasting millions on a pointless plebiscite some of your ministers have vowed to ignore anyway?”
Adam Vella: “Aww I’m glad you can be happy Malcolm, while people like me don’t even have a choice to get married because of your lack of action. happy Valentine’s Day to all of the Australian gay couples who could be married like Malcolm right now.”
More tweets on the subject can be read on Mr Turnbull’s facebook page HERE