Archives for posts with tag: European Court of Human Rights

The 21 December is the fifth anniversary of the first civil partnership ceremonies in England.

This was a breakthrough moment in legal equality and social acceptance for same-sex couples.

Some same-sex couples  do not want marriage.  They are happy with civil partnerships.

We respect their feelings. But other lesbian and gay couples would like to get married. It is the universally recognised system of love and commitment.

I sympathise with heterosexual couples who don’t like the patriarchal history of marriage and the idea of being called husband and wife.  They would rather have a civil partnership instead.  The law should give them that option.

Peter Tatchell is coordinator of the Equal Love campaign – www.equalove.org.uk – which seeks to end sexual orientation discrimination in civil marriage and civil partnership law.

“Over the last two months, four same-sex couples were refused marriage licenses at register offices in Greenwich, Northampton and Petersfield. During the same period, four heterosexual couples were turned away when they applied for civil partnerships in Islington, Camden, Bristol and Aldershot,” said Mr Tatchell.

“All eight couples received letters of refusal from their register offices. We are using these rejection letters to challenge the exclusion of gay couples from civil marriage and the denial of civil partnerships to straight couples. Since there is no difference in the rights and responsibilities involved in gay civil marriages and heterosexual civil partnerships, there is no justification for having two mutually exclusive and discriminatory systems.

“Banning black couples from getting married would provoke uproar. The prohibition on gay marriages should arouse similar outrage.

“The ban on same-sex civil marriages and opposite-sex civil partnerships is a form of legal sexual apartheid – one law for gay couples and another law for heterosexual partners. Two wrongs don’t make a right.

“In a democratic society, we should all be equal before the law.

“Everyone should have a choice, either a civil marriage or a civil partnership, whichever they prefer. The current laws deny couples choice and discriminate on the grounds of sexual orientation. This what we are challenging in the European Court of Human Rights ,” said Mr Tatchell.

The news conference on Tuesday will be chaired by Peter Tatchell, and feature all eight couples and their legal advisor, Professor Robert Wintemute of the School of Law at Kings College London. He will outline the legal basis of the Equal Love challenge to the current proscriptions.

“Banning same-sex marriage and different-sex civil partnerships violates Articles 8, 12 and 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights,” said Professor Wintemute.

“It’s discriminatory and obnoxious, like having separate drinking fountains or beaches for different racial groups, even though the water is the same. The only function of the twin bans is to mark lesbian and gay people as socially and legally inferior to heterosexual people.”

I am confident that we have a good chance of persuading the European Court of Human Rights that the UK’s system of segregating couples into two ‘separate but equal’ legal institutions violates the European Convention. I predict that same-sex couples will be granted access to marriage in the UK. The government will eventually accept that it cannot defend the current discriminatory system.

without beard in sydneyWhenever some catty reader tells me to go home to the UK because I write optimistically for positive governmental change, fair taxes or that there might be a public option in the healthcare bill-where am I meant to go?  I live here!  Some of you can be very cruel, writing vile and damning notes to me-do I care about your vile and damning notes?

Do I fuck!  It takes a great deal more than a few inarticulate insults to upset this old goat.

What could any of you possibly do to upset me?   Well, like my errant lover, you could keep me hanging around LA waiting for you when all I want is you beside me-that’s pretty unsettling.  I am unsettled. Bemused by adolescence.

Even though I know you are fragile, it’s hard not to be selfish.  I love you. I need you.

I want to fuck you.

However, I loved laughing with you last night Mr. Darling NYC.  Sitting together by the fire in Malibu with Chris. Laughing like we should be doing when two people meet and fall headlong into…whatever men like us fall into.  I wish there was a word for that exciting moment just before you fall in love.

I couldn’t sleep last night.   I remembered the giant from twin peaks.

This is all I am permitted to say.

So, I was thinking about just how lucky I am surrounded by like-minded friends who want the best for all of us-rather than just themselves.

I was thinking about God and how regardless of circumstance I am never alone because I have faith.

A great deal of faith.

There’s a man in a smiling bag.

I have faith that the good of the people will overcome the evil in men’s hearts.

I was thinking about being a liberal.   I was wondering what American’s mean when they say the word ‘liberal’?  When they think of a liberal what do they see?  I was thinking that in some countries even Glenn Beck would be perceived as a liberal and that it’s all a matter of context.

Actually, regardless of whichever country Glen Beck lived, he would still be a simpering, self-obsessed cretin – a suppurating sore on the backside of humanity.

Unable to sleep I was thinking a great deal last night-holding my lover in the night gently snoring and fragile in my arms.

Without chemicals he points.

Having been one, I was thinking about the British Aristocracy.   Drunk aristocrats, dressed in tartan, over glasses of port rueing the day the British media went bad, nostalgic for a truly right wing rag.

Some would raise a glass to Oswald Mosley.

I met Oswald Mosley,  leader of the British Union of Fascists and his beautiful wife Diana Mitford in Paris when I was 19.    By the time I met him he was a demented old man wracked with Parkinson’s disease.  Lunch was cancelled because he took a dump in the sitting-room-I remember the smell and thought to myself  ‘that was a stinky poo’.

Until his dying day, Oswald Mosley was convinced that the British people would eventually come to their senses and call him home to lead the country he believed vehemently he was born to lead.

Oswald Mosley was not a rogue British fascist.  It is well known that had Hitler invaded the United Kingdom the aristocracy, of whom Hitler was in awe and had great sympathy, made a pact to hold onto what they owned.  Edward VIII‘s pro-German views made him a source of concern for the British government. “He’d always admired Hitler. He was, frankly, very pro-Nazi,” says John Julius Norwich.

Edward’s affair with Wallis Simpson – an American with a racy past, who was even more pro-fascist than Edward – was of great worry to the Royal Family. In 1936, Edward gave up the throne. The couple married as the Duke and Duchess of Windsor in 1937, and went on a tour of Nazi Germany, finally settling in Portugal. While Adolf Hitler plotted to seize the duke and use him as a puppet king, Churchill banished him to the Bahamas – where he could do the least damage to the British war effort.

I want to write about the private option.

The man I met in New York, the scruffy handsome man is gone.  There’s no two ways about it.  Gone, gone, gone. I just didn’t call him back and now friends are calling pissed at me for my summary dismissal.   One night he lays there in my arms as gently as a baby the next he is on the streets diving into gay bars in The East Village.

Jake bauman Jake Bauman

That, my friends, is the way it is in the life of a sex addict.

What do these things mean?

LUNCH:  Cold poached chicken with watercress sauce.  Delicious.

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