I’ve never been a big fan of Valentine’s Day. I won’t bother going into the reasons, because they’re all the usual ones. But today was very different. Today I went on my first ever march! – the Love Equally march for marriage equality. Over 1000 people marched through Edinburgh to deliver a Valentine’s card to Alex Salmond that said “Roses are white, thistles are blue, we believe in equal marriage and we hope the Scottish Government will too.”
I’m thoroughly embarrassed that I’ve never marched before – when I think of all the important causes I’ve let go past! I slightly excuse it by saying that St Andrews (where I was a student) wasn’t really much of a marching place, but really it’s mostly a fear of crowds and an unfamiliar environment.
Anyway, I decided to get over myself and go along, even though I didn’t know anyone else who was going! (Most of them have that pesky thing called ‘work’ to go to.) I met some lovely people and it was a nice friendly non-scary march with some good speeches at the end. Certainly the most useful Valentine’s Day I’ve ever spent.
There were some really fab banners and I’m very impressed with anyone who can get ‘heteronormativity’ into a chant…
(Some far better pics available here including decent crowd shots – mine were incredibly fuzzy and I was right at the back so they pretty much show the back of people’s placards!)
As Patrick Harvie said in his speech, marriage has come a long way in recent decades. I still have my qualms about the history of the institution, but every day I see people re-shaping marriage into a modern, equal partnership. It’s definitely time for all loving partners to have the same right to marriage – and it’s something that’s supported by the majority of the Scottish people. Let’s hope that all the party leaders follow through their pledges and we have equal marriage sooner rather than later.