10 predictions for how the world could change in 2015
2014 was a momentous year for equality – but we think the year ahead could be one of the most exciting yet.
News is often unpredictable and unexpected – but here’s our ten predictions for some of the stories we might be reporting on in 2015.
1. A leading sportsperson will come out
2015 will see a sporting superstar follow in the footsteps of Justin Fashanu, Casey Stoney, Tom Daley, Robbie Rogers, Jason Collins, Michael Sam and Ian Thorpe, by opening up about their sexuality.
Stonewall CEO Ruth Hunt recently revealed she knows of several gay footballers, while NFL player Michael Sam also says he has been in touch with a number of closeted players.
The stage is set – and we think that this year will see a leading sportsperson take the plunge and come out as gay.
2. Ireland will approve same-sex marriage
The Republic of Ireland will hold a referendum on civil same-sex marriage this spring, and all polls have suggested an overwhelming victory for equality.
With Ireland’s PM planning to take a leading role in the ‘Yes’ campaign, we expect to see political fireworks ahead of the vote.
We’re not sure if the victory will be a huge landslide as suggested by pollsters – Irish referendums are often unpredictable due to low turnouts and powerful lobbying groups – but we’re hopeful that same-sex marriage will pass comfortably.
3. A senior UKIP politician will say something homophobic
In the run-up to May’s General Election, we expect more chaos in the ranks for Nigel Farage’s UK Independence Party.
With a number of untested parliamentary candidates facing close scrutiny for the first time, we would not be surprised to see slips from the party’s more eccentric members when asked about homosexuality.
Some senior figures who have been keeping a low profile in recent months – like perpetual gaffe machine Roger Helmer – could also make a return to prominence.
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