(From Today Show Facebook page)
In this ‘debate’ on same – sex marriage, I have often wondered who are letting LGBTQ+ people speak.
Things are starting to look up. The latest example is from Today Show (Australia) where comedian, actress and LGBTQ+ advocate, Magda Szubanski gave an emotional interview explaining why same – sex marriage is so important and the effect of the debate.
This isn’t the first time she’s opened up about her experiences and her passion for the legalisation of same – sex marriage in Australia. In 2012, she came out publicly on The Project and explained how she felt about the same – sex marriage debate. Her coming out was a classic!
I think Magda Szubanski’s story demonstrates that same – sex marriage is not a ‘non – issue’ for some members of the LGBTQ+ community. It’s real, it’s raw and it’s personal. In both The Project and The Today Show interviews, Szubanski emphasised her own struggles as a young gay person, obviously remembering what it was like to have your life and love under scrutiny (this was when homosexuality was still illegal in many parts of Australia. Tasmania was the last state to decriminalise homosexuality in 1997).
I think this is what needs to be thought about when debating, not just same – sex marriage, but anti – discrimination laws, the back pedalling of anti – vilification laws and advertising standards, etc.
So, what can be done?
Can I say, yet again, please, PLEASE, keep an eye out for LGBTQ+ loved ones. If they are struggling, be there for them. Encourage them to get further help if they feel they need it.
For LGBTQ+ people who are struggling, please don’t suffer in silence. Talk to someone, or at least take the steps you need to make yourself feel better. Switch off from news and social media if you have to. Regardless of what many people, including allies, might say, this can and often is very taxing emotionally. Please look after yourself.
If anyone needs any support you can contact:
Lifeline: 13 11 14
Beyond Blue: 1300 224 636. (The website has great information about mental health too).