A touching story of a Cambodian father’s love for his son.
“Have you been following the news about the same-sex marriage postal survey? Have you given any thought to how you’ll vote?”
I click send. I check my inbox every day but there’s no reply. A week passes before he gets back. He is circumspect.
“It is a controversial issue. It drags on too long now. Wait and see the vote,” he says.
dad’s reply was a non-answer, much like when government departments
“issue a statement.” I was being fobbed off by my own dad.
later, the Yes campaign has released a chirpy advertising campaign
urging people to “ring your rellos” to talk about the survey. If only it
were that easy. One ad shows supportive Anglo-Saxon parents with their gay son, hand on shoulder. They don’t look like me or my family. It
makes me realise the Turnbull Government’s survey has forced many
Australians, like me, to confront family members who don’t accept them.
the Yes campaign’s optimistic vision of a modern pluralist society,
many Australians still live under a heavy cloak of secrecy and even
shame. They are forced to keep their true self invisible, or have it made invisible for them. They sit quietly at the family table, afraid the mere mention of their sexuality might elicit harsh words or worse. They are tolerated, not accepted.