Protiv!

On 1 December, Croatia will vote whether or not to change its constitution to ensure that marriage is only ever defined as a union between a man and a woman, putting it in the illustrious company of Belarus, Bulgaria and Ukraine. The referendum is costing 43 million Kuna (about 5.6 million Euro) and is likely to pass in this very Catholic country.

Tonight, we went to a concert supporting ‘Protiv’ – that is, voting against the referendum motion.

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It was a bloody great concert right in the heart of Zagreb, right in the main square (Trg Ban Jelačić) with cool bands, cheap beer and lots of people in beanies.

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Croatia is not a rich country. It has high unemployment and many people will struggle to survive the harsh winter. It’s bizarre to me why the country would spend 43 million kuna on a referendum to ‘strengthen’ the meaning of the single word ‘marriage’ – when, by the way, on 13 December Croatia is likely to pass legislation recognising same-sex relationships with almost all of the same rights as straight couples (excluding the word marriage, and the right to adopt children).

That’s right, you heard it here first ladies and gentlemen – even if this referendum passes on 1 December, this referendum which will make it constitutionally illegal to define marriage as anything but a union between a man and a woman, gay couples will still enjoy almost all of the same rights and responsibilities as straight couples come 1 January 2014.

Forty-three million kuna.

What a fucking waste.

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It was -1 degree when we were out dancing along to the party tonight. And we weren’t the only ones. The whole square was filled with people young and old (and very cold) having a great night out. However, predictions say over 60% of voters will go to the polls to say ‘yes’ and around 24% of voters will say ‘no’. Looking around tonight, with everyone having a great time in spite of the predictions, I reckon we’re part of the cutest, funnest, nicest and best parts of society.

Protiv!

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Nat Newman

Nat Newman is an award-winning writer of short stories, content, podcasts, feature articles, drunk text messages and, soon, a novella.

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