Video: Interview With Godwin & DeRoche

October 2, 2017 | 35 Comments

Winston Godwin and Greg DeRoche — who successfully filed a legal challenge which paved the way for same sex marriage in Bermuda — sat down with Bernews this weekend for a live interview on our Facebook page, where they discussed the historic court case, LGBTQ rights, their recent marriage, the possible legislation pertaining to same sex marriage and more.

In May of this year, the court ruled in the legal case brought by Mr Godwin and Mr DeRoche, which followed their marriage application being declined by Bermuda’s Registrar-General, with the court ruling in their favour, saying “the common law discriminates against same-sex couples by excluding them from marriage.”

YTPH Bernews Interview with Winston Godwin 1 ssm

Speaking about the ruling with guest interviewer Jeremy Deacon, Mr. DeRoche said, “For me, and I think Winston kind of hit most of the things that I agree upon, it was not about something that was personal to our relationship so much.

“It was more how it would impact the LGBTQ community in Bermuda and their day-to-day life. Just going about day-to-day life, being able to get married and have their relationship recognized in that sense.

“To just kind of go about their everyday kind of life just like you, me, and anyone else here. We all get up. We all either go to work, go get our groceries, pick up our children. Whatever it is. All of us humans do that.”

Asked about a statement, when the court case came to a conclusion, where Mr. Godwin said, ‘It’s been a long time coming, this ruling, although it was in our favor, but there’s still so much more to do in Bermuda,’ Mr Goodwin expanded on it, saying, “Yes, it’s just a piece of paper, but that doesn’t change the mindset of people. That doesn’t change because the ruling’s been made and because this is what the judge deemed; clearly there’s still a lot to be done. ”

“It’s still a process in itself. While the ruling’s in our favor, and while people have gotten married due to this ruling, there are still a lot of people not happy with that and trying to actively stop that. That in itself is something that we’re working on.”

“Unfortunately it’s still something we’re trying to keep here because Bermuda, if they were to do it, it’ll be the first country to take away same sex marriage. That’s one of the most obvious things, but otherwise, again, it’s this shift in mindset to get people to see that we are not different.”

Mr Godwin added, “I’m not here, and I don’t think either of us are here, to change their minds. I think I have encountered a lot of people, family members even, where it’s like, I’m not here to change your mind, you’re not here to change mine. I just want you to accept and recognize me me for who I am, and I will give you the same respect.”

Asked if they would be willing to talk with members of Preserve Marriage, Mr Goodwin responded, “I would absolutely consider talking to Preserve Marriage about it. I don’t understand why not.

“I think when the court case and referendum was kind of in its early stages, they were so vocal against it I was like, ‘Well, how about you come and talk to me?’ I have no idea who’s in Preserve Marriage. I don’t. There is no face of Preserve Marriage for me.”

“I would love to see someone come up to me and make their stance and argument as to why. We can have a discussion about it.”

“I have no problem with people voicing their opinions and having discussions and having debates. My problem is when you are actively working to deny someone a right. In us doing what we did, I don’t think we’re ever denying anyone anything.

“I think with the opposite side is they’re not just trying to stand up for their side. They’re working to stop us from having the same right as them.

Mr Godwin added, “I guess the question for me now at this point is that ruling was made on May 5th, how has society been reordered? Are we in some crazy society now that pigs are flying and other things are happening? Because nothing’s changed.

“My thing is we’re not imposing some sort of gay culture or gay agenda on heterosexual people. It’s not ramming basically some sort of gay culture or ideas down their throats. We just want to live our life like everyone else.” He added, “We haven’t gone door to door with books or anything, preaching our agenda to anybody.

Addressing the possibility of legislation that seeks to restrict marriage as between a man and a woman, Mr DeRoche said, “A lot of the people I’ve talked to internationally can’t understand if there was a potential for the rights to be revoked, they just can’t comprehend it, because it’s never been seen in history.

“To them they just can’t fathom this and it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Sadly a lot of my friends are kind of angry at that thought, which, I mean, I would be too if it happened. I’d be kind of disappointed.”

If you want to listen ‘on the go’, you can also access the audio only version of this interview, and all our past interviews, in the podcast section of the Bernews app.

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Comments (35)

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  1. Southampton says:

    I do not agree with same sex marriage.
    It does not condone the increase in population and what is your future to look forward to, other than to be together.

    That is my opinion. If you do not agree, I really do not give a s____t.

    • Onion says:

      Then may I suggest a simple solution: don’t get a gay marriage.

      Problem solved and it’s a win-win. Other people get human rights and you don’t have to do anything you don’t believe in.

    • Mitchell says:

      “What is your future to look forward to”? Next time I meet my future, I’ll ask her. But aside from seeing abuse of the English language eradicated, I suspect she is looking forward to the day that ignorance and prejudice is a thing of the past. (My past says hello, by the way. She had much to say but I’ll save that for another day. )

    • FU says:

      “I really do not give a s____t.”

      yet…you felt the need to post this?
      Hate to break it to you, but no one cares about your bigoted opinion.

    • Move Forward says:

      Increase in population? There are millions of children out there now that don’t have parents. Also, do you think a gay person who isn’t granted the right to marry will then suddenly say well I can’t get married…so I’m going to have kids? Just because they don’t receive the right, doesn’t mean they will change.

    • Mike Hind says:

      And no one really gives the same thing about your opinion on other people’s relationships.

      Butt out and no one will bother you.

    • Mike Hind says:

      And your opinion should have an effect on someone else’s life… why?

      Just as you don’t give one of those about other people’s opinions, your opinion should be treated exactly the same.

      You are allowed to hold that opinion. The problem comes when you start thinking that that opinion matters when it comes to other people’s relationships.

  2. Jus saying says:

    hmmm

  3. Bermuda is too small for this, unlike other countries where you have communities of like minded groups that can flourish in their lifestyle.
    With Bermuda being a conservative unique paradise, whats next? Nude beaches, pride parades, casino’s and the dark underworld that comes with it.
    We have become immuned in this world to believe that what is abnormal to be normal.
    Lord help our children.

    • Onion says:

      No, what’s next is committed married same sex couples doing the same thing every other married couple does.

      • Not really, nature has its way of putting THINGS in its right perspective.

        • Mike Hind says:

          Your “Nature” argument has been debunked every single time you try to bring it up.

          Please stop. It’s dishonest and unfair.

        • FU says:

          “Not really, nature has its way of putting THINGS in its right perspective.”

          If that were true, you would have been stillborn.

    • Toodle-oo says:

      I asked you a long time back on a related thread how it affects you if the gay couple who have been living together for 20 years 2 doors down from you decide that they can finally legally tie the knot . Still waiting for an answer Mr tic toc .

      People like yourself and Southampton above are the small minded ones that need to grow up .

      ‘It does not condone the increase in population’ SMH

    • puzzled says:

      Move away

    • wahoo says:

      Who are you to talk about abnormal? Your hate and consumption with race and intolerance of anything that you do not understand is completely abnormal. I do not always understand things but you gotta live and let live.

    • David says:

      Yes lord help if you have gay children with your attitude

    • PBanks says:

      I think among places with similar size and population the French and Dutch OTs in the Caribbean allow it?

    • FU says:

      OJ, your brain is too small for this. please hide under your bed for the rest of your pathetic life…so the gay doesn’t get you.

    • Move Forward says:

      So basically you are saying they need to be segregated? Wow

    • Mike Hind says:

      Nope. As usual, nothing in your post is right, fair or, most importantly, true.

      All of this has been explained to you a whole bunch of times.
      You’ve been shown to be wrong over and over.

      Why do you keep trying to spread these lies?

      You worry about our children? Shouldn’t you be more worried about creating a future for them based on convenient lies and falsehoods and hate?

  4. Cow Polly says:

    If Flip Flop and Preserve Marriage had accepted the ruling in May, the whole issue of SSM would have slipped off the radar and people would have been left to live their lives and marry who they love. As Mr Godwin says, the change in law hasn’t made the sky collapse or society crumble and if everyone just accepted it and moved on, no one would be talking about it anymore. Just rejoice that Bermuda is once again a welcoming island to everyone regardless of our differences.

  5. Hannah Collins says:

    Thank you Winston & Greg for being visible. I love you guys!

  6. David says:

    Newsflash if bermuda same sex marriage gets jacked up by Wayne it won’t stop anyone being gay getting married or living that life only person who suffers is your fellow gay Bermudians .. this is a done deal leave it alone and stop gay bashing and read your Bible

  7. Quinton Berkley Butterfield says:

    Heroes!!

  8. Justme says:

    Marriage is a word created for the union of a man and a woman.
    gay is a word created for those men who are attracted to another man.
    lesbianas is a word created for a woman who is attracted by another woman.
    if two people of the same sex want to be together legally then it should be called CIVIL UNION.
    I do not agree with so-called gay, lesbian and other rights … because they are human (and we already have human rights). what has to be done REINFORCE these rights.
    absolutely no one has the right to judge someone lives inside and outsides doors, as long as it does not damage the right of another person.
    the CIVIL UNION will give legal rights to those who build estates together.
    they will have the same rights and obligations legally, it is also well known that there are both same-sex and heterosexual couples who build estates or have relatives do not take care of important decisions in their lives.

    That is why I believe this right.

    • That guy says:

      BEST STATEMENT EVER!!!!!

    • FU says:

      “Marriage is a word created for the union of a man and a woman.”

      And Ketchup!

    • Millipete says:

      Yeah. You can ride the same bus as me, but you have to sit at the back. That’s how “civil union” feels to LGBT people in our community who live among other committed couples who are able to marry.

    • Mike Hind says:

      Why should they have to call it something else? Why NOT call it a marriage?

      And you are incorrect. A Civill Union does not offer the same rights. It is not the same thing as a Marriage.

      There is absolutely no reason to force people to call their relationships something different.

  9. David says:

    A civil union has not the same equal rights as marriage civil marriages are already done by hetro folks who do notwant religion in their marraige so what the difference jeez it’s like bermuda in in the dark ages and we need to teach and spooon feed everything and why would straight folks not want GLBTq folks to live in commited relationships ?

  10. spider says:

    Congratulations to Germany for passing same sex marriage law.

  11. Bob says:

    Winston and Greg – keep strong! We respect your brave choice to fight the good fight in the public arena. We are behind you, as Love is Love.

  12. Mike Hind says:

    Well done, Winston and Greg! You are truly brave and truly heroes. Your courage is an inspiration.

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