After the rousing, history-making day this week that saw Canberra pertaining a categorically rare one-up over everywhere else in Australia, the ACT passed their same-sex marriage bill in the legislative assembly, signalling a ticket to the enviably logical club of nations/cities who know what’s up re: same sex unions.
However, like a cruel snatching of candy, the High Court has begun its quest to dismantle the law, which, as Tony Abbott’s openly gay and recently engaged sister Christine Forster put it in a Guardian op ed, “the sky didn’t fall in and the world didn’t stop turning because the ACT decided that more people who love each other and want to acknowledge their committed and permanent relationships could get married.”
Despite the impending battle that may crush the laws voted in on Tuesday, news.com.au reports that a mass wedding made up of hundreds of couples could be a possibility, considering that there may be a shortage of celebrants and a certain anxiety to tie the knot as soon as they can (early December) before any High Court rulings make their wedding day legally unrecognised. More than 800 same sex couples in the ACT have already expressed their intention to marry once the laws solidify.
Deputy director of Australian Marriage Equality Ivan Hinton told news.com.au that he hopes a large enough facility in the ACT becomes available for a mass wedding to take place: “I would like to celebrate my relationship amongst my family and friends but it couldn’t possibly be any better than celebrating with a whole bunch of people who would like to have exactly the same relationship status that I do.”
But however fabulous the idea of a mass gay wedding sounds, the reality may well be impinged by the committed case of naysayers against the laws, which will be put to the High Court. Commonwealth Solicitor-General Justin Gleeson SC described the stance against marriage equality that will be put forward by saying, “We will say that the central purpose of the federal (marriage) act (is) … there shall not be other and different forms of marriage.”
Title image by Hagen Hopkins via Getty.