Message to the House of Commons: Please Vote and Put Us Out of Our Misery
Thank you, Stephen Harper, thank you. Merci beaucoup. I'm breathing a sigh of relief because, frankly, I'm sick of writing about same sex marriage. It's wearing me down, I can't sleep at night and the Norwood liquor store has had to order in extra cases of Graham's Late Bottled Vintage. I can't take it anymore.
I'm sure we're all suffering. The issue is a rash that won't go away. We've marshalled facts, spent countless hours pouring over vile and bigoted websites, watched the machinations of various right-wing fundamentalists, parsed motives of various politicians and even had a few chuckles at our brothers and sisters on the right side of bloggerdom tying themselves in knots over the issue. The only satisfaction, apart from having same sex marriage (please God) settled once and for all, is seeing a sop tossed by the Prime Minister to his social conservative base going down like a tequila shooter at Friday night cocktail hour. But enough is enough already!
There. That's off my chest. Now for the obligatory analysis, one painful word at a time. The government's motives for holding the vote at this particular point in time and space are bit puzzingly, to be sure. Clearly his allies on the religious right want the vote delayed, preferably until the Conservatives get a majority, so they can get another shot at overturning the legislation. (They're the separatists of the Conservative coalition: they're waiting for "winning conditions.") They won't be happy the government is pushing forward. Same sex marriage advocates, on the other hand, with timing and momentum on their side, wanted the vote yesterday. The delicious irony of this situation is that Stephen Harper may well become the happy-faced poster boy for same sex marriage, even as he votes against it.
Maybe, just maybe, the government, eyeing a spring election, has just woken up to a few home truths. Foreign policy is in disarray, and environmental policy is a fiasco. They're trailing in the public opinion against the leaderless, hapless Liberals, and that party is about to anoint a new Chief Scourge. The polling numbers in Ontario and Quebec suck. Maybe the Prime Minster has decided ditching social conservatives and their unappealing policies --- symbolized by the debate over same sex marriage and the ugly rhetoric emanating therefrom --- in order to charm the fat moderate centre without whom he can't get a majority. As for losing the base, well, who else are they going to vote for? It's the classic tactic of successful right-wing politicians: marginalize your captive core supporters to appear more moderate than you really are.
Well enough of that. As I said, writing about same sex marriage now is like pulling teeth, though admittedly the inevitable bigot eruptions from the likes of Bishop Henry and Charles McVedy will make tempting targets. But the agony is about to end. Again, thank you, Steve. You've made life tolerable once more for this blogger, at least. I promise never, ever to mention same sex marriage again after the vote if you do likewise. Is it a deal?