PFLAGs Shelley Argent shares letter asking friends to support her son

National Spokesperson for Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, Shelley Argent, has penned a personal letter to her friends and extended family urging them to vote YES in the postal survey on marriage.

“I am uncertain how many feel about the issue of marriage equality, but I feel I need to ask them to support my son James on this issue,” Argent explains.

“In one sense it felt demeaning to us as a family but I felt the need to do this. None of one my other friends needs to ask permission from friends and loved ones to support their child but I do. And it’s wrong, but needs to be done.”

Read Argent’s full letter below;

This is not something I would normally do.  But as many are aware I am probably the most outspoken parent in this country for the rights of my son James and other LGBTIQ people to be seen as equal, to their siblings and friends when it comes to their right to marry the person of their choice.

I am writing to everyone I consider a friend and asking them to please vote YES for James (and perhaps you have a loved one) and his/their right to marry. I don’t know if James will ever want to marry, but I want him to have the choice. I want to feel great joy for my straight son, but with the knowledge of discrimination that may continue to hang over James’ head will make that time difficult for me.  I don’t want to feel a roller coaster of joyful and sad emotions that you will never experience assuming your children are straight.

I know some may be concerned about religious freedoms and rights but please let me assure you, whether you vote Yes or No, nothing will change with the religious freedoms, they are taken care of. And gay radical sex WILL NOT be taught in schools. Furthermore, nothing will change for you and your loved ones regardless of the outcome. But, should the outcome be NO, James loses and will know he is viewed as second rate in his home country. Should the outcome be YES, James gains and knows that he is equal to his brother.

You all know that we as parents, love our boys equally, but regardless of power, wealth and love we cannot provide James, his rights. And, regardless of what he does he cannot earn his rights. But, you can give him his rights by voting YES.

If you are considering voting NO, please ask yourself, would I/we vote against your child’s rights?

I am sorry and saddened to be writing this letter to you, but James’ rights are too important to me/us to at least not ask you to support James.

I hope when you finish reading we are still your friends.


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