Editorial January 10 2018

Sealed with a kiss.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018 was indeed the day many in this country have been waiting for.

The law officially changed on December 9, making Tuesday, January 9 the first day for vows to be exchanged between husband and husband, wife and wife.

Some special exemptions have been granted to allow some same sex couples to marry earlier but January 9 was the first legal day officially.

In the Illawarra, Michael Hobbs and Edward Kwok-Hobbs were kind enough to share their day with us. We are proud to share their moment on our front page.

It has taken us too long as a country to arrive but we are here now and the rest, as they say in the classics, is history.  Finally, the LGBTI community have equality.

“There are a lot of legal rights now that we’re entitled to,” Michael told the Illawarra Mercury.

“That was the biggest thing. Just being in a relationship, even with a commitment ceremony, if anything happened to Edward I have no legal rights. That’s the main reason we did this. 

“It gives us security, a feeling of acceptability. Our civil rights have been met now. It’s way overdue, but this is a lot to us.” 

Right across the country couples were celebrating making their unions official.

On the Tweed Coast Commonwealth Games athlete Craig Burns  wed his fiancee and fellow sprinter Luke Sullivan at the stroke of midnight. Many others followed in a similar fashion.

There are those in this country who will view this day differently. Those who chose to cling on to the past as tightly as they possibly can. Let it go.

It wasn’t that long ago you couldn’t wear a bikini or women couldn’t vote in a election. How ridiculous does that seem now in hindsight?  

“It wasn’t that long ago that gay people were being bashed and locked up – it’s just mind blowing,” celebrant Lorraine Lehman-Jones said. 

“Once that [same-sex marriage] legislation came through, not every gay couple is going to want to get married, the same as some heterosexual couples don’t want to get married, but the fact that they now have that choice, and freedom and the right to do that is just so exciting. 

Once society rights wrongs we quickly move on.

Marriage equality will be the same.


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