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Gay marriage debate indulges homophobes

I support Rory O’Neill’s contention, on the show, Sunday with Miriam, that it is no longer reasonable to debate the question of whether the Irish State should treat gay people differently.

The referendum should be abandoned and the legislation tabled tomorrow.

Debate lends an illusion of respectability to the arguments of those who believe gay people should not be afforded equal rights.

Last year, my partner and I formed a civil union in London, which several members of my family, who live in Ireland, did not attend.

I was later told they had always disapproved of my homosexuality, for moral and religious reasons. Any right-thinking person would regard their behaviour as regrettable, but there is only one difference between their disgust and that of the homophobic journalist. One exists in private, and the other in public.

Enda Kenny could table gay marriage legislation tomorrow. It would pass with flying, rainbow colours. If some mean-spirited sorts wished to challenge its constitutionality, let them. People, such as those bigoted members of my family who poured scorn on my important day, would have to concede that it is the law and it is permitted. When the State accommodates everyone in a fair and equal way then, over time, hearts and minds will follow.

David Murphy


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