Equal Ever After: The Fight for Same-Sex Marriage - and How I Made It Happen

Equal Ever After: The Fight for Same-Sex Marriage - and How I Made It Happen

Lynne Featherstone

Language: English

Pages: 336


Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

“My story starts at the very end of the journey to equal marriage rights. I stand on the shoulders of giants...” In the future, people will find it difficult to believe that until 2014, somewhere between 5 and 10 per cent of Britain’s population were excluded from marriage. As Equalities Minister during the coalition government, Lynne Featherstone played a fundamental role in rectifying this. From setting the wheels in motion within government, to her experiences of the abuse with which the gay community is regularly confronted, through her rebuttals against the noise and fury of her opponents, and finally to the making of history, Lynne details the surprising twists and turns of the fight. Filled with astonishing revelations about finding allies in unexpected places and encountering resistance from unforeseen foes, Equal Ever After is an honest account of one woman’s pivotal efforts during the turbulent final mile. This is real, lived history - recent history. Many of us celebrated on the day the dream became reality; many of us know people whose lives were changed by the events described here. In this inside story, Lynne reveals the emotional lows and the exhilarating highs involved in turning hard-won social acceptance into tangible legal equality.





















death do them part. Why should we deny it to people who happen to be gay or lesbian who wish to show that commitment and share it with their family, friends and everybody else? We should be proud of couples that love each other and a society that recognises their love as equal. That is why you will not find us watering down this commitment. Lord Carey then increased his attack on same-sex marriage to another level by appearing to compare its opponents to persecuted Jews in Nazi Germany. He was

his life and thought it was making a big mistake not to embrace same-sex marriage. Apparently at this point the archbishop’s aide cut in and asked Jonny rather tartly whether his view represented that of government. Jonny had to retreat and concede sadly that it did not. At the end of the meeting Williams walked down the stairs with Nick and Jonny and said to Nick: ‘What you have to understand is that the coalition I have to manage [the Anglican communion worldwide] is an even more difficult

hailed the introduction of same-sex marriage as one of his proudest achievements.’ David Cameron has never said a single word to me about same-sex marriage. CHAPTER 7 BOMBSHELL Arguments raged around the country but I never really worried that I would not be able to deliver same-sex marriage. I had made it quite clear that the consultation would be about how to proceed with same-sex marriage, not whether to proceed. I had got all the major political parties on board and all the leaders were

under-secretary of state is the lowest form of ministerial life. There are three levels of departmental ministerial office: secretary of state, minister of state and parliamentary under-secretary of state. To make matters worse, these positions are abbreviated internally within government, to SoS, MoS and PUSS respectively. Now, whether you pronounce my acronym, PUSS, as in cat or as in the stuff that oozes from wounds or worse, there really is no good way of doing so! The under-secretary is a

Fordham, whom I left on one knee outside the Lords proposing to Russell Eagling. Happily, Russell said yes. They made their own little bit of history when their engagement was the first same-sex engagement ever to be announced in the Births, Marriages and Deaths column of The Times. They were married on 9 July 2014 at Hampstead Register Office. Now we are all equal ever after! EPILOGUE There are seventy-nine countries in which homosexuality is still illegal, eight in which it still carries the

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