January 08, 2010
Latin States of America lead US of A
Posted by: Chris
When I was a senior in high school, homosexuality was a crime punishable in prison in Portugal. Today, that country's parliament adopted a gay marriage law. Passage of the marriage equality legislation comes as welcome news just one day after the New Jersey Senate defeated a similar measure, with Democrats splitting 13-10, much as they had in the New York Senate last year.
It's ironic to see so much progress in Catholic-dominated Hispanic countries. Portugal follows Spain, of course, in extending marriage to same-sex couples. Just last month, Argentina married its first gay couple, and the Districto Federal in Mexico, containing the largest city in either America, beat our nation's capital to the punch with its own gay marriage law.
Even Portugal's former colony, my beloved Brazil, is moving faster toward gay marriage than the good ole U.S. of A. This week Presidente Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva presented a proposal for remaking Brazilian human rights laws and contained within was a provision for same-sex marriage. Already Brazil recognizes gay relationships for immigration purposes, albeit through a complicated judicial process.
As groundbreaking as the election of Barack Obama was, he now lags behind the president of Brazil, which matches our own country in macho culture and in the influence religious conservatives.
(Top photo via Associated Press: Portuguese Prime Minister José Socrates threw his goverrnment's support behind the gay marriage proposal adopted today.)
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