Thursday, 28 May 2015

Thank you Mr Dodds for the encouragement

Yesterday in the House of Commons debate on the Queen's Speech Nigel Dodds said:

"He is certainly proof that if we work at and fight for an issue that we believe in, we will get there in the end, especially if the cause is right."

Now the comment was directed at Sir William Cash and in relation to the EU referendum that has been promised in Queen's speech, but as an LGBT campaigner in Northern Ireland I take this as encouragement. Because also later when responding to his colleague Sammy Wilson he said:

"My hon. Friend raises an important issue, which is one of those that arise out of the Belfast agreement. As he knows, equality provisions under section 75..."

Although he did continue "work against giving our armed forces veterans the same status as those in the rest of the United Kingdom." the fact is that a DUP MP has acknowledged the Northern Ireland Act/Belfast Agreement and knows about section 75 is something.

But back to that first comment in relation to William Cash. The wave of rightness is on the side of those supporting Equal Marriage. Yesterday Greenland became the latest state to legislate for it in a unanimous vote. Since the referendum result in Ireland was announced Austrialian Prime Minister Tonny Abbott said he wouldn't stand in the way of a conscience vote. Also Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi is about to fast-track the civil union legislation that has been stalled for a number of months.

Only Germany of the list of Western countries that Peter Lynas listed on Nolan as not having marriage equality the other day has not announced any plans to move forward on this issue since the referendum. Although there have been calls from the opposition Green/Alliance 90 leader Katrin Göring-Eckardt for Germany to move on this, Angela Merkel is remaining adamant it is not the goal of her CDU/CSU party (the only one in Germany opposed) in this Government.

Therefore the LGBT community should take encouragement that even Nigel Dodds that "if we work at and fight for an issue that we believe in, we will get there in the end".

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