The End is Nigh

We are 60km away from Brisbane, it’s 5.30am and I am wide awake in a motel that looks like a crime scene. For six weeks we have taken small steps, literally, to show how important marriage equality is to us but has it been worthwhile?

Both of us took time away from our jobs, family, friends and sheets that don’t burn to walk outside the Sydney bubble and try to make a difference. I had hoped to fall back in love with Australia. With its incredible beaches, rugged fauna and ancient watering holes, it’s done its best.

Right now, however, as a symphony of truck brakes serenade me, I’m not feeling the love.  I should be smiling. Decent coffee is nearby, my Nike sneakers can soon be retired and I can rest my feet on Monday. We even managed a few sneaky laughs yesterday at Dreamworld.

The Yes result seems inevitable and organisations are posting invitations for celebrations but that feeling of love eludes me. Last night’s Uber driver, who transported us to the nearest Thai restaurant without a pun in its name summed up my current mood. “It all seems a waste”. There’s the waste of money, time and energy which can be placed firmly at the feet of our government. Our government is meant to represent Australia (well really it’s still the Queen, who has already approved same-sex marriage in Britain) and they’ve done a lousy job.

The politicians in Canberra have unleashed Pandora’s Box, or in this case, an Esky stuffed with rum and cokes, to give airtime to a vicious minority who have dominated our television screens and newspapers with hateful messages and countless lies. We get who we vote for, even if they are ineligible for the job because of their citizenship status or penchant for comical hats. We voted for a parliament that preferred to stage The Hunger Games rather than deal with human rights.

Thanks to The Marriage Law Survey (Additional Safeguards) Act 2017 a minority was empowered to spread a message of hate targeting the LGBQTI community and sensationally focusing on gender diversity. This act was meant to protect respectful debate but just gave us the Lyle Shelton show on repeat.

It’s hard to love this part of Australia, which wields religion like a weapon, takes smug satisfaction in judging the validity of others and clings to a notion of manhood and womanhood where 1 in 3 women are victims of domestic violence.

Love may sneak up on me at the final hurdle but I won’t be turning around to look for it. I don’t want to look back just yet at everything that has happened. Today I want to leave the crime scene.