Partners

An ‘Equal Civil Partnerships’ badge
Equal Civil Partnerships badge

We went to Parliament Square this morning for the passing into law of Equal Civil Partnerships (the Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registrations etc) bill — or now, act — to give it its full name).

It has taken a long time, but different-sex couples can now have a civil partnership if they want to. Or will be able to, later this year or early next, once all the paperwork has been processed.

It’s not the biggest issue in the world — it wasn’t even the most important thing happening in Parliament Square this morning (those kids were noisy, and rightly so) — but it means a lot to us. Those of us who have problems with traditional marriage. Which just means that it isn’t right for us; it’s up to everyone else what’s right for them.

Rebecca Steinfeld & Charles Keidan
Rebecca & Charles Addressing the crowd

Rebecca Steinfeld and Charles Keidan, who took the case to the court, and ultimately the Supreme Court, were there, as was Tim Loughton, the Liberal Democrat MP whose private members bill it was. The government supported it, which is why it was able to get through; but of course they had to do something once the Supreme Court had told them that the existing situation was unlawful.

Tim Loughton MP
Tim Loughton MP addressing the crowd

The stupid thing is that all the time and money and stress could have been saved if civil partnerships had included mixed-sex couples in the first place. I was sure I’d had this thought back when they were introduced for same-sex couples. I thought I had written about it here. Not much, it turns out. There was a post expressing disappointment with a setback at the Supreme Court before the final decision.

But there was this post about Tony Blair’s legacy, where I said in an aside, “though why not for het couples?”

I took a few pictures. Did you know there’s a statue of Abraham Lincoln in Parliament Square? I didn’t. Seems rather strange, but why not, I suppose.

Statue of Abraham Lincoln in Parliament Square
Statue of Abraham Lincoln in Parliament Square

After a week of Brexit insanity and a on a day of horror in New Zealand, it’s good to have some positive news.

Partners

Civil Disappointment

I’m disappointed about the ruling on different-sex civil partnerships. But at least there’s hope for the future. The judges agreed that things need to be equalised, but they’re giving the government more time to sort it out.

You’ve got to wonder, though, why is the government bothering to fight it? It’s just a waste of public time and money. Who suffers by removing the difference?

Well, on that last, according to the Guardian article:

Jean Rathbone, a celebrant for humanist ceremonies, said opposition to extending civil partnerships came from the “marriage industry and the church.”

The “marriage industry?” I didn’t know there was such a thing. But the term makes sense when you think of the crazy amounts of money people can spend on weddings.

Anyway, onwards. There’s a GoFundMe page to contribute to help keep the campaign going. I’m in.

Civil Disappointment