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Artists Unite To Demand Gay Marriage
Some of Ireland’s leading musicians are joining forces to campaign for the introduction of same sex marriage in Ireland. At stake, they say, is a fundamental human right.
Anne Sexton, 02 Oct 2012
“It’s a disgrace!” Make no mistake about it: Paul Walsh from Dublin band Royseven is passionate about the issue of marriage equality for Ireland’s same-sex couples.
Walsh is the brother of the legendary Tonie Walsh, DJ and gay rights activist. But this, he says, is not why he decided to get involved in the Marriage Equality campaign.
“I got involved because I am embarrassed,” he says. “I am embarrassed we’re in this situation. It’s nothing to do with sexual orientation, it’s not to do with being gay or being straight. It is a question of equality. That’s the core issue.”
Royseven are just one of a number of bands and artists taking part in ‘Just Love – A Gig For Marriage Equality’ at Dublin’s Mansion House on Sunday, October 28. Others include This Club, Heathers, Brian Kennedy, Bitches With Wolves and Shaz Oye. It is a veritable gathering of the clan, a night when people of every sexual orientation can stand four square together on an issue that affects us all. Because you either believe in equality or you do not...
The campaign group Marriage Equality was launched in 2008, originally in support of Katherine Zappone and Ann Louise Gilligan, the lesbian couple whose Canadian marriage was not recognised by the Irish state. At the time, public support for marriage equality stood at 56% in public opinion polls.
Four years on, and two years since civil partnership was introduced in Ireland, offering for the first time a legal basis on which same sex couples could plan their lives together, the vast majority of us, 73%, believe that all citizens should be able to access civil marriage. It is a powerful statement about the increasing maturity of Irish people in relation to issues of sexual choice.
No one is in any doubt that things have been getting better. Campaigners see civil partnership as a step in the right direction, which helped couples to formalise their relationships. However, there are 160 differences between civil partnership and civil marriage, any of which might impact on the feeling of security and belonging which is important in relationships. These include issues around immigration, the dissolution of the relationships and children.