Canada’s Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper
For those of you who thought that marriage for same-sex couples was legal throughout Canada, well, it isn’t. However, Bill C-38, a bill to make it legal throughout the land, is still making its way through the government. April 12, the day BTL goes to press, the first major House of Commons vote on the government’s marriage equality bill is scheduled.
Unfortunately, Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper is pushing for an amendment to the legislation that would keep marriage defined as a union between a man and a woman and keep marriage out of reach for same-sex couples.
According to a report April 11 by 365Gay.com, Harper’s amendment, if passed, would require some tricky constitutional maneuvering and is intended to derail the legislation.
According to an April 11 Canadian Television report, constitutional experts are calling Harper’s amendment unconstitutional and said it was “based on the ‘deceitful and disingenuous assertion’ that Parliament can keep same-sex couples from marrying through other means.”
But then, this is coming from the man who vowed to abolish the marriage equality law if his party was elected to govern. In fact, drama abounds in Canada between the Liberal Party currently in charge and the Conservatives who are looking to topple them. Oh yeah, the Liberal Party is currently embroiled in scandal (sigh). See? It’s not just American politicians who can’t seem to play nice.
If Harper and the Conservatives (which would be a great name for a band, wouldn’t it? They could tour with Hootie and the Blowfish) bum rush the Liberals the marriage bill would be DOA. Thankfully, the places in Canada where courts have ruled in favor of marriage equality would be safe.Ê
Let Harper know what you think about his amendment by emailing him at [email protected]. Contact other members of Parliament and encourage them to support the equal marriage bill. You can find them at http://www.parl.gc.ca. They’ve already heard plenty from American right-wingers. Don’t let them get the last word.