Colin Farrell has written an emotional open letter pleading with Irish voters to support same-sex marriage.
Ireland is set to vote on the issue next year, with a referendum asking the country if they want to legalise gay marriage due in the first half of 2015.
In the piece, published today (November 16) in The Sunday World
, the Hollywood actor reveals that his support for same-sex marriage stems from his adoration for his gay brother, who was forced to leave Ireland in order to marry his long-term partner.
"I think I found out my brother wasn't grovelling in heterosexual mud like most boys our age when I was around 12," wrote Farrell. "I remember feeling surprised. Intrigued. Curious. Not bi-curious before you start getting ideas.
"I was curious because it was different from anything I'd known or heard of and yet it didn't seem unnatural to me," he continued. "I had no reference for the existence of homosexuality. I had seen, by that age, no gay couples together. I just knew my brother liked men and, I repeat, it didn't seem unnatural to me.
"My brother Eamon didn't choose to be gay. Yes, he chose to wear eyeliner to school and that probably wasn't the most pragmatic response to the daily torture he experienced at the hands of school bullies.
"The fact that my brother had to leave Ireland to have his dream of being married become real is insane. INSANE. It’s time to right the scales of justice here. To sign up and register to vote next year so that each individual’s voice can be heard."
While a date for Ireland's referendum on Civil Marriage Equality is yet to be set, people must register to vote by November 25.
Meanwhile, a new study has found that global acceptance of homosexuality is rising 0.9% a year – find out more here
You can read Farrell's heartfelt letter in full here
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