By Cathy Anderson
On the cusp of landmark legislation passing Australia’s parliament legalising same-sex marriage, I have a confession to make. When the results of the postal plebiscite were revealed, I celebrated with gusto alongside others in our LGBTIQ community. What a time to be alive – months of uncertainty and furious debate and scrutiny culminating in a majority vote to support same-sex marriage.
But, in the midst of my euphoria, I made a sudden realisation – I had unwittingly been adhering to the ‘Gay Agenda’ and it may have swung the vote.
Throughout the terminally long postal plebiscite debate, I’ve been listening to the No Campaign and their emphatic belief that all queer people such as myself are pushing said dangerous and immoral Agenda onto society. The Agenda’s aim? To make homosexuality a normal way of life and, even more frighteningly for them, indoctrinate not just my generation, but the next as well.
I confess I am shocked at my personal lesbian Agenda-pushing discovery. It came less as a thunderbolt than a slow, dawning realisation. It’s tricky to pinpoint the exact moment of my epiphany, but the signs have all been there.
Perhaps it was the tofu. Strolling through Coles on a random Thursday afternoon fills me with a sense of purpose – who doesn’t love a fridge full of delicious and healthy goodness? One of my favourite recipes is a laksa from that one time (OK, two times) that I undertook the Michelle Bridges weight loss program. But it’s a seafood recipe and my girlfriend isn’t a fan, so we do what we thought other people looking for a healthy alternative would probably do and substitute tofu instead to make it less calorific.
But now I’m beginning to see what the No Voters see – that tofu is simply a gateway food. Forget the hyperbole around the benefits of taking mini-breaks from a meat-laden diet, it’s actually one step closer to the rampant veganism that is an unadulterated attack on the right way to be an Australian as dictated each January by Sam Kekovich. And it’s that kind of radicalism that leads to man hating, lesbian separatism and the removal of blokes from having anything to do with having and raising kids. Tofu. Tofu!
Regular weekend trips to Bunnings should probably have tipped me off a lot earlier. I’m not a mad DIYer, but my girlfriend certainly is. Whether it’s fixing the front door, re-oiling our timber verandah or upcycling storage palettes to make vertical gardens for succulents and herbs, she’s all over it. I’m only in it for the sausage – I love a good sausage. (Sidebar: surely that should give me some anti-Agenda credit?) But, although I don’t really know the difference between a phillips head and the other screwdriver thingy, in reality I am an accomplice in this home-improvement-loving-lesbian Agenda behaviour.
When we bought a car earlier this year, we did what every woman in their early 40s who likes to go bushwalking with their rescue dog does – we bought a Subaru. No bright pink buzz boxes with KISS FM tunes streaming out the window. We went with a sensible SUV that has a direct line to Radio National as well as enough room for the dog and the few things we might want to pick up from Bunnings on the way home from one of our outings. (See? I just used the word ‘outings’. Things are actually worse than what I thought.)
We don’t have kids of our own (more brownie points for us here amongst the No Voters, methinks) but we do have plenty of nieces and nephews between us upon which we are most likely inflicting irreparable damage.
My girlfriend’s niece is 12 and her nephew is 8, and they regularly have ‘Aunty sleepovers’ at our place. They get the luxury of using the guest bedroom which has a queen bed, we take them out to the movies, we make them pizza, we play at the local park and we hug them a lot. They are amazing and we love them. They call me Aunty Cathy even though I am not directly related. The horrors that these guys must carry with them each time from their hideous experience with us now haunts me. Agenda-pushing is a traumatic business.
The scope of my Agenda-esque existence is so big that it is now the lens through which I am seeing my life. The No voters were right. Almost every single thing I do is so gay, so queer and so utterly shocking that I don’t know how I haven’t seen it before.
How I have gotten away with it for so long is beyond me. But then I made another discovery – I am not in this alone. There are literally hundreds of thousands of queer Australians pushing this line of normality every day simply by doing stuff that is, well, normal.
So while I attended marriage equality rallies, posted countless times on social media about the plebiscite and had heartfelt and often difficult conversations with friends and family, my ‘normal’ lifestyle was the most powerful tool in my arsenal to champion all of Australia (well, 61.6% anyway) to vote Yes.
Brilliant. Now, all we need is for legislation to whip through Parliament (and for Bunnings to start cooking up some ‘notdogs’ aka tofu sausages) and life will be even better than normal.