Are We at a Tipping Point for Gay Marriage?

A quick scan of the news these days reveals a lot of developments in the fight for same-sex marriage around the globe. Let’s take a look.

Saba

On Dec 4, the first same-sex marriage was held on Saba, a small Caribbean island where gay marriage recently became legal. The island is under Netherlands rule and since the Netherlands legalized same-sex marriage in 2001, the island is required to recognize the unions also. Saba is the only of the Dutch islands to not just recognize but embrace the legislation and welcome same-sex couples.

Scotland

Scotland just launched a draft bill to legalize same-sex marriage.

Mexico

The Mexican Supreme Court recently ruled that state laws limiting marriage to heterosexual couples are unconstitutional. Same-sex marriage and adoption by gay couples have been legal in Mexico since 2010 but many Mexican states did not recognize the marriages. Activists believe the ruling “opens the door to equal marriage in the whole country.”

France

As many as 150,000 people rallied in the streets of France on Sunday to show their support for the same-sex marriage and adoption bill that will come up for debate in Parliament in January.

Uruguay

Same-sex marriage just became legal in Uruguay, making it the second Latin American country after Argentina to support the rights of gays and lesbians to marry.

United States

In the United States, same-sex marriage became legal in Washington, Maryland and Maine in November, bringing the total to nine states plus the District of Columbia that support LGBT relationships.  The fight now turns to Illinois, Delaware, Hawaii, Rhode Island, Minnesota and New Jersey, where activists are hopeful of seeing results in 2013.

Asia

Though there’s still a long way to go in Asia, governments in both Thailand and Vietnam are researching the issue of same-sex marriage. Huge!

Now, I know there are far more countries in the world that don’t support same-sex relationships than do. (According to Wikipedia, just over 4% of the world’s population lives in an area where same-sex marriage is legal. Such a tiny number! Makes me so grateful for the rights I enjoy here in Canada.) So a tipping point? Maybe not. But it sure does feel like we’re making progress. And that’s a good thing.

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