Yesterday France took the final legislative step towards marriage equality when the National Assembly voted it through. It still needs to get through an appeal with the Constitutional Court before the President can sign it into law, but they have already ruled in the past that this issue is in the hands of the legislature not the judiciary so it is likely to successfully overcome this last hurdle (cross those fingers!)
Here are two images from last night showing some of the opponent's reactions to the vote.
Violence and aggression have characterised the French opponents campaign. Now judging the opposition by their protesters is unfair. Violence and vandalism (on an admittedly smaller scale) did occur after Prop 8 was voted through in California in 2008. But let us not pretend this was just a heat of the moment thing. The opposition's protests have had violence (perhaps not help by the police and their heavy handed approach) for a while now. Just look at this protest with some visible Catholic priests looking rather shocked as the protest turns violent (and trying to put themselves in the way of the police arresting/beating protesters which didn't go down well although kudos to them for trying to protect their flock, even when that flock is being a bit nasty themselves).
And all this anger over people in love wanting to marry. That is all. I think this picture from a few weeks ago serves to contract the hate of the opposition and the hopes of the pro-equality side rather nicely.
Love not hate. That is all we want. Peace and freedom to be with who we want to be with and to have our families protected (in shock news LGB people don't suddenly become infertile when we have sex with someone of the same sex, hell there's even a child living in my house and that was definitely not something I was expecting!)
Good news too from Rhode Island where marriage equality successful passed a Senate committee and is now due to be voted on in the Senate today. And in Delaware last night the House of Representatives passed marriage equality too which will now head to the Senate there.
Colombia's Senate, after two postponements, is due to vote on marriage equality today. Fingers crossed it goes through although there the nation isn't really behind this law like it has been elsewhere.
Marriage equality is on the march. There are no guarantees of success, no divine right to win, no "wrong side of history" to rely on. The only thing that will see us through is by pressing the real issues: love and freedom. Our opponents see marriage, couples and children as simply cogs in an unfeeling wheel designed only to serve the state. We see marriage, relationships and families as units held together by love, free will and commitment.
I know which vision I prefer.