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Like the Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin, I would ask everyone to reflect deeply on the same-sex marriage referendum.
Are we, as a society, willing to respect a small minority? Are we willing to let a very small number of children benefit from having two legal parents who happen to be of the same sex? Can we love and respect people, who, because of an accident of genetics, are different from us?
I was horrified by the utterances of Bishop Kevin Doran. Doran’s rant was not just wrong, but insulting. As a young man, I never wanted to be gay. I went to therapy to change myself and I married a wonderful woman and I’m still gay. Doran’s the “jury’s out on whether people are born gay” comment is incorrect and shows his disconnection from reality.
I have been married for 30 years, and the strain of hiding from myself has been difficult. (There was no problem hiding it from others, as I am not ‘camp’).
Eventually, I just broke down crying and came out to my wife. So, stupid comments like “gay people can get married, but to people of the opposite sex”, really annoy me, not just because of the stupidity involved.
As regards the question “what will we be expected to teach children in school about marriage?”, I expect the bishops not to teach children anything about things they know nothing about. Apparently, none of them has been in a long-term relationship (with another, real person) and they have learned about marriage from reading books written by other bishops (people who were never married). So, do think deeply on this referendum and I will finish by quoting the Proclamation of the Irish Republic: “The Republic guarantees religious and civil liberty, equal rights and equal opportunities to all its citizens, and declares its resolve to pursue the happiness and prosperity of the whole nation and of all its parts, cherishing all the children of the nation equally, and oblivious of the difference carefully fostered by an alien government, which has divided a minority from the majority in the past.”
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