there are few things that are simply black and white issues to me, where i know exactly where i stand and feel strongly enough to defend my position when it comes up. gay rights/gay marriage is one of them. i am not sure exactly why this has always been so important to me and although there have been many people who have tried to convince me otherwise with various different arguments, i still believe that human rights extend to all, regardless of sexual orientation. specifically, Article 16:1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.
this morning when i heard that the African National Congress, the party making up the government of south africa, passed a law legalising same-sex marriage, i was shocked and thrilled. shocked because homosexuality is extremely taboo in africa (it is illegal in kenya) and president thabo mbeki has not been known for his progressive thought (he has publicly denied that hiv leads to aids). thrilled because i believe that marriage should be a contract, commitment, and partnership offered to anyone who wishes to enter it.