Monday, May 20, 2013

France Officially Enacts Marriage Equality!

France officially enacted marriage equality this weekend when Socialist President Francois Hollande signed the measure passed by the French legislature last month into law on Saturday, one day after the nation's highest court ruled that the measure was indeed constitutional. France became the 14th country in the world to open civil marriage to same-sex couples.

Hollande made "marriage for all" a central plank of his presidential election campaign last year. On Friday, he tried to turn the page on months of bitter opposition to the measures, arguing it was "time to respect the law and the Republic".  
And he warned that he would tolerate no resistance. 
"I will ensure that the law applies across the whole territory, in full, and I will not accept any disruption of these marriages," said the president. 
French Justice Minister Christiane Taubira, who steered the legislation through parliament, has said the first gay marriages could be celebrated as early as June. 
Marriages in France must take place in town halls, most of which take around four weeks to process marriage applications. 
The issue of gay marriage and adoption has provoked months of acrimonious debate and hundreds of protests that have occasionally spilled over into violence and is unlikely to drop off the political agenda. 
Although the Constitutional Council approved the bill on Friday, the International Day Against Homophobia, its opponents have vowed to fight on.

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