Same-sex marriage also known as gay marriage is the marriage of two people of the same sex or gender , entered into in a civil or religious ceremony. There are records of same-sex marriage dating back to the first century though there is no legal provision in Roman Law, and it was banned in the Roman Empire in the fourth. In the modern era, same-sex marriage started being legalized at the beginning of the 21st century. Today, it is available in 28 countries. Same-sex marriage is also due to become legal in Costa Rica.
In a column gah the New York TimesMaria Bello described the process of falling in love with her female best friend, Clare, and how that affected her relationship with her year-old son. Orthodox Judaism opposed same-sex marriage, while the Reform, Reconstructionist, and Conservative traditions allowed for it. The Fact about gay marriages also allows the recognition in France of same-sex couples' marriages that occurred Fact about gay marriages before the bill's enactment. A Supreme Court press spokeswoman said that the court agrees with the administrative court that current regulations do not allow for same-sex marriages to be legally performed in Latvia. In the modern era, same-sex marriage started being legalized at the beginning of the 21st century. A registered partnership was the same as Vertical business model civil marriage, but was not seen as marriage in the eyes of the church.
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Main article: Same-sex marriage in Austria. Conscientious and nurturing adults, whether they are men or women, heterosexual or homosexual, can be excellent parents. Britney nude pose spear and journalist Jonathan Rauch has argued that marriage is good for all men, whether homosexual or heterosexual, because engaging in its social roles reduces men's aggression Fact about gay marriages promiscuity. Main articles: History of same-sex unionsTimeline of same-sex marriageand History of homosexuality. Same-sex marriage banned for Amy fisher sucking. Opponents of agy marriage who want marriage to be restricted to pairings of a man and a woman, such as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saintsthe Catholic Churchand the Southern Baptist Conventionuse the term traditional marriage to mean opposite-sex marriage. But things changed inwhen the Nigerian president Obasanjo signed legislation that prohibits all same-sex marriages and criminalizes anyone involved in such activities. Support for same-sex marriage also has remained steady among whites, blacks and Hispanics over the past two Fact about gay marriages. Civil unions performed Easter Island. Inhe made history by becoming the first US President in the office who openly said that same-sex marriages should be made legal. This article marriagee general legal information and does not contain legal advice. Marriage automatically confers numerous legal benefits to a couple. Gay Marriage Gifts. Bush, the 41st President of the United Fact about gay marriages, is also considered to be a supporter; he did not actually state his support, but served as a witness at a same-sex wedding in
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- The goal of gay marriage rights movements is simple: to secure the rights of same-sex couples to formalize their relationship in the same way as opposite-sex couples do, i.
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A growing number of governments around the world are considering whether to grant legal recognition to same-sex marriages. In Mexico, some jurisdictions allow same-sex couples to wed, while others do not. The decision, which went into effect immediately, makes the Andean mountain nation the fifth country in Latin America to allow gays and lesbians to wed. On Jan. The country had granted gay and lesbian couples the right to enter into a civil partnership in On Dec. Along with New Zealand, Australia became the second country in the Asia-Pacific region to make same-sex marriage legal.
On June 30, , Germany became the 15th European country to enact legislation allowing same-sex couples to wed. On April 28, , Colombia became the fourth country in Catholic-majority South America to legalize same-sex marriage, following Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil. Eleven years after same-sex marriage was first made legal in Massachusetts, the U. Supreme Court ruled that the Constitution guarantees it throughout the country. Before the ruling, 36 states and the District of Columbia had legalized same-sex marriage.
See a timeline highlighting changes in state policies from On May 22, , Catholic-majority Ireland became the first country to legalize same-sex marriage through a popular referendum.
Same-sex marriage became legal in Finland starting in Finland becomes the last of the five Nordic countries to legalize same-sex marriage, joining Denmark, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. In addition to allowing same-sex couples to marry and adopt, the legislation sets the legal age of marriage at 18 and eliminates the existing requirement that couples who want to marry must first submit to a medical exam.
On Feb. In addition to allowing same-sex couples to wed, the measure gives churches and other religious groups the option of deciding whether or not they want to conduct such marriages. The two largest churches in Scotland — the Church of Scotland and the Roman Catholic Church — oppose same-sex marriage and lobbied against the bill. The day before, the measure had won final passage in the British Parliament after months of debate. The law only applies to England and Wales because Scotland and Northern Ireland are semi-autonomous and have separate legislative bodies to decide many domestic issues, including the definition of marriage.
The new law in England and Wales, which was a priority for British Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader David Cameron, allowed gay and lesbian couples to marry beginning March 29, However, the law prohibits same-sex weddings within the Church of England, which continues to define marriage as between one man and one woman. On May 18, French President Francois Hollande signed into law a measure legalizing same-sex marriage, making France the 14th country to grant gays and lesbians the right to wed.
True to their campaign promises, Hollande and the Socialists have pushed through a law that not only legalizes same-sex marriage but also gives gay and lesbian couples the right to adopt children—a provision that has drawn especially strong criticism from French Catholic leaders. While recent polls show that a majority of French adults support the law, opposition to the change has been intense.
Since the beginning of , several anti-gay marriage protests with occasionally volatile crowds numbering in the hundreds of thousands have taken place in Paris and elsewhere.
On April 17, the New Zealand Parliament gave final approval to a measure that legalizes same-sex marriage, making the Pacific island nation the 13th country in the world and the first in the Asia-Pacific region to allow gays and lesbians to wed. The law took effect in August In , New Zealand enacted legislation allowing same-sex couples to enter into civil unions. The measure not only legalizes same-sex marriage but also allows for gay and lesbian couples to adopt children.
Civil unions have been permitted in Uruguay since , and gay and lesbian couples were given adoption rights in A Pew Research Center study on the global religious landscape as of found that roughly four-in-ten Uruguayans are unaffiliated with a particular religion.
About 58 percent of Uruguayans are Christian; in the Latin America-Caribbean region as a whole, 90 percent of the population is Christian. The measure was enacted into law a few days later when Queen Margrethe II gave her royal assent to the bill. In , Denmark became the first country to allow same-sex couples to register as domestic partners.
And in , the country enacted a law allowing gay couples in registered partnerships the right to adopt children. With the legalization of gay marriage, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark which is the state church , is required to allow same-sex couples to marry in churches. In addition, the law leaves it up to other religious groups to determine whether or not to allow same-sex weddings in its churches.
In July , Argentina became the first country in Latin America to legalize same-sex marriage. In spite of vigorous opposition from the Catholic Church and evangelical Protestant churches, the measure passed both houses of the Argentine legislature and was signed into law by President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner. The law grants same-sex couples who marry all the rights and responsibilities enjoyed by heterosexual couples, including the right to adopt children.
In June , Portugal became the eighth country to legalize same-sex marriage. Its parliament had passed the measure legalizing gay marriage earlier in In April , the Constitutional Court declared the law to be constitutionally valid. It was signed by Silva in May of that year and took effect one month later.
A measure legalizing same-sex marriage passed the Icelandic legislature in June Iceland had allowed same-sex couples to register as domestic partners since A decade later, the parliament passed a measure allowing gay couples to adopt children. In April , the Swedish parliament voted by an overwhelming majority to legalize same-sex marriage.
Gay couples in Sweden had been allowed to register for civil unions since The law allows gays and lesbians to marry in both religious and civil ceremonies, but it does not require clergy to officiate at such ceremonies. The Lutheran-affiliated Church of Sweden, to which roughly three-quarters of all Swedes belong, has offered blessings for same-sex partnerships since January Since January , gay couples in Norway legally have been able to marry, adopt children and undergo artificial insemination.
The new law, which was passed in , replaced a law permitting civil unions. It passed despite resistance from members of the Christian Democratic Party and the Progress Party, as well as a public controversy over state funding for fertility treatments for lesbian couples. The largest religious group in the country, the Lutheran-affiliated Church of Norway, initially voted to prohibit its pastors from conducting same-sex weddings.
But the Church of Norway changed course and began sanctioning same-sex weddings in early The new law allows for religious institutions and civil officers to refuse to conduct same-sex marriage ceremonies, a provision that critics claim violates the rights of same-sex couples under the constitution. The new measure passed by a margin of greater than five-to-one, with support coming from both the governing African National Congress as well as the main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance.
A closely divided Spanish parliament legalized same-sex marriage in , guaranteeing identical rights to all married couples regardless of sexual orientation. Vatican officials, as well as the Catholic Spanish Bishops Conference, strongly criticized the law, and large crowds demonstrated in Madrid for and against the measure. The high court ruled that the lower court judges lacked legal standing to bring the suits.
In , the Canadian Parliament passed legislation making same-sex marriage legal nationwide. In , lawmakers defeated an effort by the ruling Conservative Party of Canada to reconsider the issue, leaving the law unchanged. Beginning in , the Belgian parliament offered limited rights to same-sex couples through registered partnerships. Same-sex couples could register with a city clerk and formally assume joint responsibility for a household. Five years later, in January , the Belgian parliament legalized same-sex marriage, giving gay and lesbian couples the same tax and inheritance rights as heterosexual couples.
Support for the law came from both the Flemish-speaking North and the French-speaking South, and the law generated surprisingly little controversy across the country. The long-dominant Christian Democratic Party, traditionally allied with the Catholic Church, was out of power when the parliament passed the measure.
The law allowed the marriages of Belgian same-sex couples and recognized as married those from other countries where same-sex marriage was legal. Those provisions were broadened in to allow any same-sex couple to marry as long as one member of the couple had lived in Belgium for at least three months. In , the parliament also granted same-sex partners the right to adopt children. In December , the Netherlands became the first country to legalize same-sex marriage when the Dutch parliament passed, by a three-to-one margin, a landmark bill allowing the practice.
The legislation gave same-sex couples the right to marry, divorce and adopt children. The only opposition in parliament came from the Christian Democratic Party, which at the time was not part of the governing coalition.
Although Muslim and conservative Christian groups continue to oppose the law, same-sex marriage is widely accepted by the Dutch public. In , the Mexican Supreme Court issued a ruling making it much easier for gay and lesbian couples to wed. The decision gave same-sex couples the right to seek a court injunction against state laws banning gay marriage; although it did not technically legalize same-sex unions nationwide, it was a major step in that direction.
Since , the southern Mexican state of Quintana Roo also has allowed gay marriages. In , the congress of the northern state of Coahuila approved same-sex marriage, and in , neighboring Chihuahua followed suit.
About Pew Research Center Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world. It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research.
Pew Research Center does not take policy positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts. Countries that allow same-sex marriage Alphabetical list of countries. Research Areas U.
Rocket Lawyer UK. Uruguay's Chamber of Deputies passed a bill on 12 December , to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples. Today, it is available in 28 countries. As a result, professional scientific associations have argued for same-sex marriage to be legally recognized as it will be beneficial to the children of same-sex parents or carers. Ask a Question. Prejudice , violence.
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Some supporters of legalization of same-sex marriages use terms such as marriage equality or equal marriage to show that they only seek equal benefit and not special rights, and some opponents of legalization in the US call it redefining or redefined marriage. Gay marriage facts reveal that there has been a big shift in the way Americans perceive same-sex marriage in recent years.
The heated debate about gay rights in general that eventually led also to the question of same-sex marriages, started many decades ago in the US, and is still quite fierce today, despite the fact that same-sex marriages are legalized at the federal and state levels.
The Democratic Party has traditionally been a supporter of gay marriage, and some Democratic presidents have publicly supported legalization of same-sex marriages, including the current US President, Barack Obama. Democrats are supported in this matter by various smaller political parties Citizens Party, Green Party, Communist Party, Libertarian Party, Socialist Party and many others , plus numerous professional associations, non-profit organizations, labor organizations and even some religious organizations, such as Buddhist Churches of America, Presbyterian Church USA, Reformed Church of America, Wicca and many others.
On the other hand, the political party that still leads the opposition is the Republicans, although some notable members have expressed support for gay marriages in recent years. Social media platforms are an important tool for any kind of marketing activities and have also been used with great success by both LGBT groups and those who oppose them. One such successful media campaign was the Red Equal Sign project that was started by the Human Rights Campaign in on Facebook; the campaign went viral and it is estimated that approximately 2.
Although President Obama is at the moment known as a big supporter of same-sex marriage, gay marriage facts reveal that he has changed his mind on the matter quite a lot in recent years. In the s, while campaigning for the Illinois Senate seat, he supported same-sex marriage, but in , during his first presidential campaign, he stated that he believes that marriage is the union between a man and a woman and that marriage is a secret union for him as a Christian.
In , he was against two legislative proposals for federal regulation of same-sex marriages, opposing the one that would ban same-sex marriages nationwide as well as the one that would legalize same-sex marriage nationwide, believing that each single state should decide on the issue by itself. But late apparently brought a fresh wind to his principles, since he expressed support for the equalization of gay union rights and opposite-sex union rights and even for a nationwide federal recognition of same-sex relationships and marriages.
In , he made history by becoming the first US President in the office who openly said that same-sex marriages should be made legal. In addition to the current US President, Obama, who is a supporter of same-sex marriage, there have been various other presidents who supported equal rights in this matter — Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter and even the Republican Gerald Ford, although all of them stated their support after their time in the office.
George H. Bush, the 41st President of the United States, is also considered to be a supporter; he did not actually state his support, but served as a witness at a same-sex wedding in George W. Bush, the 43rd President of the United States, openly opposed same-sex marriage during his presidency, but later seemingly changed his mind and refused to take a clear position after his presidency was done. Prior to same-sex marriages being legalized at both federal and state levels in the US, those living in same-sex relationships had to face several limitations.
Gay marriage facts also reveal a shocking truth that the discrimination of gays, lesbians and bisexuals sometimes leads to psychological health issues. For example, a study has shown a higher risk of psychiatric disorders such as anxiety disorder for gays, lesbians and bisexuals due to their status in society. A study from the Emory University in Atlanta that analyzed data from the past four decades even established that the rate of HIV infections increased with the passage of state bans on gay marriage.
Gay marriage facts reveal a surprising truth that some very traditional societies in Africa allow non sexual same-sex marriages between two women, but this is really only a legal arrangement where one woman takes the role of a man in order to secure the inheritance of the other or similar. Men, however, are not allowed to live in such arrangements, since they usually have no trouble securing their inheritance as sons.
In Nigeria, the situation was similar, with two women marrying each other being allowed, but two men marrying each other considered illegal. But things changed in , when the Nigerian president Obasanjo signed legislation that prohibits all same-sex marriages and criminalizes anyone involved in such activities.
Same-sex couples that live in countries where same-sex marriage is not legalized yet , have other options of legally recognizing their relationships. Although these unions grant certain rights otherwise unavailable to same-sex partners, they are still considered inferior by many to actual marriage. The Roman Catholic Church opposes same-sex marriages, and so do the majority of Muslim and Orthodox Jew groups, and some Protestant groups. Portugal and some Mexican states Chihuahua, Guerrero and Quintana Roo are the exceptions, but, on the other hand, we have countries which do not allow same-sex marriages, but still permit joint adoption by unmarried same-sex couples — Andorra, Israel, Malta, various Australian territories, Gibraltar, the Isle of Man, and others.
There are also some countries which allow the adoption of a step-child in same-sex relationships — Colombia, Germany, Estonia, Slovenia and the Philippines. Religious affiliation Religious attendance. Support for same-sex marriage has remained largely stable among both men and women since Support for same-sex marriage also has remained steady among whites, blacks and Hispanics over the past two years. The increase in the share of adults who favor same-sex marriage over the past 15 years is due in part to generational change.
Younger generations express higher levels of support for same-sex marriage. About Pew Research Center Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world. It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research.
5 facts about same-sex marriage | Pew Research Center
Chat with us in Facebook Messenger. Find out what's happening in the world as it unfolds. Photos: Same-sex marriage in the U. Carlos McKnight of Washington waves a flag in support of same-sex marriage outside the U. Supreme Court on June 26, The Supreme Court ruled that states cannot ban same-sex marriage, handing gay rights advocates their biggest victory yet. See photos from states that approved same-sex marriage before the nationwide ruling:.
Hide Caption. Shante Wolfe, left, and Tori Sisson become the first same-sex couple to file their marriage license in Montgomery, Alabama, on February 9, However, seven months after the U. Supreme Court ruling legalizing such nuptials nationwide, Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore directed probate judges in his state to enforce the ban on same-sex marriage. Gay rights organizations swiftly denounced Moore's January 6, , order. Florida began allowing same-sex marriages after a federal judge struck down the state's ban.
Chad Biggs, left, and Chris Creech say their wedding vows at the Wake County Courthouse in Raleigh, North Carolina, on October 10, , after a federal judge ruled that same-sex marriage can begin in the state. Joshua Gunter, right, and Bryan Shields attend a Las Vegas rally to celebrate an appeals court ruling that overturned Nevada's same-sex marriage ban on October 7, The U. Supreme Court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in Utah when it declined to hear the state's appeal of a lower court ruling.
Mary Bishop, second from left, and Sharon Baldwin, right, celebrate with family and friends following their wedding ceremony on the courthouse steps in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on October 6, The date marked the first day that all of Illinois' counties could begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. William Roletter, left, and Paul Rowe get close after having their photo taken with their marriage certificate May 21, , at Philadelphia City Hall. A federal judge struck down the state's voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage.
Rambo and Seaton were the first same-sex couple to be granted a marriage license in Eureka Springs after a judge overturned Amendment 83, which banned same-sex marriage in Arkansas. Same-sex couples get their marriage licenses at the Oakland County Courthouse in Pontiac, Michigan, on March 22, , a day after a federal judge overturned Michigan's ban on same-sex marriage.
On November 13, , Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie, left, and former state Sen. Avery Chumbley celebrate with a copy of the Honolulu Star-Advertiser after Abercrombie signed a bill legalizing same-sex marriage in the state. Utah state Sen. Plaintiffs Laurie Wood, left, and Kody Partridge, center, walk with attorney Peggy Tomsic on December 4, , after a judge heard arguments challenging Utah's same-sex marriage ban.
The New Jersey Supreme Court denied the state's request to prevent same-sex marriages temporarily, clearing the way for same-sex couples to marry. Supreme Court rulings on same-sex marriage on June 26, The high court cleared the way for same-sex couples in California to resume marrying after dismissing an appeal on Proposition 8 on jurisdictional grounds. The court also struck down a key part of the Defense of Marriage Act, a federal law defining marriage as between a man and a woman.
At the state Capitol in St. Paul, Minnesota, Gov. Mark Dayton signs a bill legalizing same-sex marriage on May 14, Delaware Gov. Jack Markell holds up legislation on May 7, , allowing same-sex couples to wed in the state. Rhode Island state Sen. Donna Nesselbush, right, embraces a supporter after the Marriage Equality Act was signed into law at the statehouse in Providence on May 2, Jamous Lizotte, right, and Steven Jones pose for photos while waiting for a marriage license in Portland, Maine, on December 29, On March 1, , Maryland Gov.
The law was challenged, but voters approved marriage equality in a November referendum. On February 13, , Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire celebrates after signing marriage-equality legislation into law. Voters there approved same-sex marriage in November , defeating a challenge by opponents.
Same-sex marriage became legal in Washington in March Olin Burkhart, left, and Carl Burkhart kiss on the steps of the New Hampshire Capitol on January 1, , after the state's law allowing same-sex marriage went into effect.
In May , Maine state Sen. Dennis Damon, left, hands Gov. John Baldacci the bill that the state Senate passed to affirm the right of same-sex couples to marry. Amy Klein-Matheny, left, and her wife, Jennifer, exchange vows in Iowa after same-sex couples were allowed to marry there with an April 3, , court ruling.
The two wed in after Massachusetts approved same-sex marriage. Massachusetts was the first state to do so. According to Pew Research Center, support for same-sex marriage in the United States has steadily increased over the last several years.
Taiwan was the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage. US Timeline: September 21, - President Bill Clinton signs the Defense of Marriage Act banning federal recognition of same-sex marriage and defining marriage as "a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife.
December 3, - A state court ruling makes Hawaii the first state to recognize that gay and lesbian couples are entitled to the same privileges as heterosexual married couples.
The ruling is stayed and appealed the following day. December 20, - The Vermont Supreme Court rules that gay and lesbian couples should be given the same rights as heterosexual couples. November 18, - The Massachusetts Supreme Court rules that a ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. February March 11, - Nearly 4, same-sex couples get marriage licenses in San Francisco, but the California Supreme Court eventually orders San Francisco to stop issuing marriage licenses. The nearly 4, sanctioned marriages are later nullified by the California Supreme Court.
February 20, - Sandoval County, New Mexico issues 26 same-sex marriage licenses, but they are nullified by the state attorney general the same day. February 24, - President George W. Bush announces support for a federal constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. March 3, - In Portland, Oregon, the Multnomah County Clerk's office issues marriage licenses for same-sex couples. Neighboring Benton County follows on March May 17, - Massachusetts legalizes same-sex marriage, the first state in the United States to do so.
July 14, - The US Senate blocks a proposed constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage from moving forward in Congress. August 4, - A Washington judge rules the state's law defining marriage is unconstitutional. September 30, - The US House of Representatives votes against amending the Constitution to prohibit same-sex marriage.
October 5, - A Louisiana judge throws out an amendment to the state constitution banning same-sex marriage because the ban also includes civil unions. In , the Louisiana State Supreme Court reinstates the constitutional amendment. March 14, - A Superior Court judge rules that California's law that limits marriage to a union between a man and a woman is unconstitutional.
April 14, - Oregon's Supreme Court nullifies the same-sex marriage licenses issued there in May 12, - A federal judge strikes down Nebraska's ban on protection and recognition of same-sex couples. September 6, - The California Legislature passes a bill to legalize same-sex marriage. The legislature is the first in the United States to act without a court order to sanction same-sex marriages.
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger later vetoes the bill. September 14, - The Massachusetts Legislature rejects a proposed amendment to its state constitution to ban same-sex marriages. November 8, - Texas becomes the 19th state to adopt a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. January 20, - A Maryland judge rules the state's law defining marriage is unconstitutional. March 30, - The highest court in Massachusetts rules that same-sex couples who live in other states cannot get married in Massachusetts unless same-sex marriage is legal in their home states.
June 6, - Alabama voters pass a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage. July 6, - The New York Court of Appeals rules that a state law banning same-sex marriage is legal, and the Georgia Supreme Court upholds the state's constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
November 7, - Constitutional amendments to ban same-sex marriage are on the ballot in eight states. May 15, - The California Supreme Court rules that the state's ban on same-sex marriages is unconstitutional. The decision goes into effect on June 16 at p. October 10, - The Connecticut Supreme Court in Hartford rules that the state must allow gay and lesbian couples to marry. Same-sex marriage becomes legal in Connecticut on November 12, November 4, - Voters in California approve Proposition 8, which will amend the state's constitution to ban same-sex marriage.
Voters in Arizona and Florida also approve similar amendments to their state constitutions. April 3, - The Iowa Supreme Court strikes down a state law banning same-sex marriage.
Marriages become legal in Iowa on April 27, April 7, - Vermont legalizes same-sex marriages after both the state Senate and House of Representatives overturn a veto by Governor Jim Douglas. The Senate vote is , while the House vote is Marriages become legal on September 1, May 6, - Same-sex marriage becomes legal in Maine , as Gov.
John Baldacci signs a bill less than an hour after the state legislature approves it.