The Sunday Morning Herald
Photo Alex Ellinghausen
As Members of Parliament [MPs] fly into Canberra this week for the introduction of a bipartisan bill to support marriage equality in Australia, the Canberra Airport has been lit up in rainbow colors to greet them, along with a giant sign: #WeCanDoThis.
In addition, there are all kinds of new ads featuring prominent Australians — such as AFL players Josh Bruce and Matt Spangher, actor Hugo Weaving and news reader Chris Bath — calling on Parliament to stop stalling on the issue.
The Snow family, which owns and operates Canberra's airport, have become the latest businesspeople to join more than 500 organizations in urging Parliament to endorse marriage equality once and for all.
"The support of corporate Australia and families such as ours is critical in demonstrating the strong community support for equality. Equality will mean that our family will be treated just like any other, and not have the stigma of a second class relationship."
Canberra Airport managing director Stephen Byron told Fairfax Media the light display was aimed at supporting the end of "ridiculous" discrimination against same sex couples, including his brother Tom Snow, who married his husband Brooke Horne in New Zealand last year.
"It struck me at this time how ridiculous it is that my relationship, and my wife and children, are afforded the protection and support of our government, yet Tom and his family are forced to travel overseas to get married."
The bipartisan, or cross-party, bill is likely to be introduced by the federal Coalition MP and long-time LGBT supporter Warren Entsch this week, though it faces an uphill battle, including opposition from Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who opposes same-sex marriage.
So, it’s still a battle, still a march, Down Under, but at least upon their arrival in Canberra the MPs will be greeted by a gorgeous rainbow urging them to do the right thing and make all Aussies equal.
And, coming from an American who fought and argued for the right to marry in this country, I can certainly say there is no time like the present.