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Denmark set to legalize marriage equality by summer

Marriage equality

By Jacob Combs

Helle Thorning-Schmidt, the center-left prime minister of Denmark, announced this week that his government plans to introduce draft legislation that will bring marriage equality to the country on June 15.  From BNO News:

Denmark was the first country in the world to legalize same-sex unions in 1989 but, despite a generally tolerant society towards homosexuality, politicians repeatedly rejected bills to legalize same-sex marriage. The previous Danish government also rejected a same-sex marriage bill last year.

But Thorning said the Danish government will submit a draft legislation on Wednesday which will allow same-sex couples to get married at both City Hall and the Church of Denmark if they find a priest who is willing to perform the wedding. Although some church leaders have spoken out against same-sex marriage, previous surveys have suggested that as many as 70 percent of priests are willing to marry same-sex couples.

Thorning-Schmidt called the bill “a big step forward” and a “natural” progresion for her country.  After the introduction of the civil union bill in 1989, gay couples in Denmark enjoyed the same rights as straght couples, but were not allowed to be married in a religious ceremony.  In 1997, the Church of Denmark allowed religious leaders to bless gay unions and in 2009, gay couples won the right to adopt children.

The legislation is expected to pass, making Denmark the 11th country with marriage equality.  The other 10 are Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Iceland, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain and Sweden.

30 Comments

  • 1. Sagesse  |  March 15, 2012 at 9:06 am

    @

  • 2. Alyson  |  March 15, 2012 at 9:21 am

    1 of 3 Hi All – this comment is unrelated to this post directly but I guess I just wanted to reach out for some support and advice. I am one of the 18,000 still married in CA. I have always lived in relatively lgbt positive places until I moved to northern Cal and had babies and I do not have a thick skin for this shit. Maybe it's the babies I am worried about but prop 8 was such a hell hole of contempt and derision and disrespect and crazy making non-arguments where these people could kick me in the head and somehow feel as though they were being loving soldiers of christ in the process somehow. Well, I thought I had survived that and was doing ok as my girls started at a local head start here.

  • 3. Alyson  |  March 15, 2012 at 9:23 am

    2 of 3 Well, yesterday I get a call from a neighbor (the daughter of the chief yes on 8 campaigner in our town), and she is a good person and a kind person and she was calling to apologize. She didn't have the words for it but she accidentally outed me. Well – I'm not in – and she didn't really think I was in – but apparently her daughter and another boy in the preschool had started going home with the dreaded gleeful news to their parents to say that they just learned a boy could marry a boy and a girl can marry a girl. (go figure – prop 8 passed and they still learned that! dah!). Well -they likely learned it from my girls who are still happy to talk about it. The parent of the boy was wondering where he got that from and the neigbor who called me told her about us. That was apparently the 'outing'. This parent marched into the preschool, federally funded with my gay tax dollars, and chewed out the teacher for teaching this stuff.

  • 4. Gregory in SLC  |  March 15, 2012 at 9:23 am

    Awesome!

    U.K. News:
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/9145759/

  • 5. Jacob  |  March 15, 2012 at 9:23 am

    *correction:

    Thorning-Schmidt called the bill “a big step forward” and a “natural” progresion for HER country.

  • 6. Alyson  |  March 15, 2012 at 9:23 am

    3 of 3 (or 4 if still too long) the teacher then said she doesn't teach it – that they stay neutral. (the teacher is also luke warm for gay rights and I suspect a yes on H8er). Well the school does have books reflecting our family on the shelf so I had been lulled into thinking it was at least an environment that my girls would be more affirmed in by the teachers.

    Anyway – not much happened then that yet but I wrote an email to everyone to have a discussion about it and of course they all avoided me today and didn't write back. I don't think you can stay nuetral on this subject and not leave my five year olds open to bullying and wondering why everyone is so secretive and uncomfortable about their family and I am just really freaked out. I can't do this shit. How can I expect my gorgeous, confident, wonderful kids to deal with this. How can they stay neutral at a public school? Isn't that don't ask don't tell?

  • 7. Alyson  |  March 15, 2012 at 9:24 am

    last part: I send the principle anti-bullying info all the time and asked about their web filters to see if they were letting in hate groups and not pflag. I don't get a response most of the time and I can't do this for the next 8 years. It's really going to make me sick. I don't have the fight in me that I have seen from other lgbt families in our area. I'm just too thin skinned to do it on my own and I need more allies here. I feel like these parenst are now – in response to their kids questions – indoctrinating them with their factless psuedo-bible biases and my girls are just days away from hearing all about it.

    anyway – I have been with this site since the live blogging of the trial and I know you all often have lots of words of encouragement or suggestions and many of you live in far more back woods places than me so I thought you would have some good stuff to say.

    Scared for my kids in Bangor, CA

    Alyson

  • 8. Seth from Maryland  |  March 15, 2012 at 9:46 am

    Religion Research Institute poll released today found that 52 percent of Americans favor legalizing marriage equality for same-sex couples, including 59 percent of Catholics and 65 percent of white mainline Protestants. According to the survey, 63 percent also believe that religiously affiliated organizations that receive federal funding should be required to let gays and lesbians adopt children. In addition, 50 percent even believe religiously affiliated organizations that do not take federal funding should still offer same-sex adoptions. And though Republican presidential candidates have accused President Obama of waging a war on religion, the poll found that 56 percent of Americans do not believe religious liberty is under attack.

  • 9. Gregory in SLC  |  March 15, 2012 at 10:07 am

    I expect your confident children will remain so because of their FAB/supportive parents. No real good way to combat this except live your life well and be confident who you are. If the school takes any sanctions against your children for being honest, well perhaps another lawsuit in CA is in order!

    I can relate Alyson… current in Utah education news:
    http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2012/03/14/444250/u

  • 10. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  March 15, 2012 at 10:12 am

    I am so sorry to read this Alyson. It can be a very emotional and stressful thing to deal with.
    You mentioned 'other LGBT families in our area'….have you reached out to them for advise or support?
    Have you considered starting up a support group?
    Big hugs to you and your girls
    Mark and Robert

  • 11. Bill S.  |  March 15, 2012 at 10:20 am

    Test post

  • 12. Bill S.  |  March 15, 2012 at 10:22 am

    France

  • 13. Bill S.  |  March 15, 2012 at 10:23 am

    social

  • 14. Bill S.  |  March 15, 2012 at 10:24 am

    I'm making these test posts because I'm trying to tell people that FRANCE may legalize same-sex marriage by the end of the year, but these posts ALWAYS get deleted. I think that by saying the name of the party which is favored to win the elections this summer (it starts with an s and ends with -ist) automatically deletes my messages.

    What the hell is going on?

  • 15. Bill S.  |  March 15, 2012 at 10:26 am

    Yup! Any post I make that contains the word for the left-wing political party of France, which is named for the political philosophy that starts with an "s" and ends in ocial *** ist is automatically replaced with "This comment has been deleted by an administrator" like it's a banned word.

  • 16. Bill S.  |  March 15, 2012 at 10:28 am

    The Party Who Shall Not Be Named (for some idiotic reason) won the French Senate elections last October (first time this party has controled that chamber!) and are favored to win control of the lower house in their elections this June.

    If they do, equal marriage will be a reality in France very soon!

  • 17. David  |  March 15, 2012 at 10:53 am

    Seriously? That's pretty messed up guys. I know it's somehow become a dirty word over in the USA, but in Europe it's one of our two main political philosophies. Half the governments in the EU are following some form of that doctrine, same for Latin America where progress on equality is charging forward.

    If you're going to cover international issues on this site then the "S" word needs to be allowed. It's not a playground insult.

  • 18. Jacob  |  March 15, 2012 at 11:01 am

    Wow, I just tried the same thing. How weird! The word social*st is banned on this site?

  • 19. Bill S.  |  March 15, 2012 at 11:08 am

    Yup! Every time an international story has popped up since last October I tried posting the same sort of message about France, and it always got rejected. I figured it was a glitch or something. But today I was determined to get to the bottom of it! Every other message I write goes through no problem. Was it the word France? lol Nope it's social*st!

  • 20. Bill S.  |  March 15, 2012 at 11:09 am

    So is the nominal form s — o — c —- i — a —-l — i —- s — m.

  • 21. Glen  |  March 15, 2012 at 11:17 am

    Hmmm weird.

  • 22. Bob  |  March 15, 2012 at 11:22 am

    woot woot to Bill S,, first for the message that France is close to legalizing same sex marriage,,,,,,,, big woot woot,,,

    and also for figuring out what got your message banned,,,,,,, I for one would like to be informed about the progress and how progress is made in France,,,,, this is a global issue,,,,, thanks for getting the message through,,,, hope you keep us updated,,,,

  • 23. DaveP  |  March 15, 2012 at 11:24 am

    Hi Alyson,

    Have you been involved with PFLAG? They may be able to provide some really good support and advice. I took the liberty of doing a search for you and it looks like the nearest PFLAG chapters for Bangor, CA would be in Chico and Yuba City, and there is a third slightly further in Nevada City (and of course, larger chapters in Sacramento). Even if you were nto being faced with an unpleasant situation like this, it can be a good thing to be in touch with groups like that to help you build a sense of community. I hopre this helps. Please feel free to write back and let us know how it's going, OK?

  • 24. Jacob Combs  |  March 15, 2012 at 11:32 am

    You're very correct–oddly enough, in the second article that I linked to, they got her sex wrong, hence my mistake. Thanks for pointing that out!

  • 25. Bob  |  March 15, 2012 at 11:54 am

    City of New Orleans Proclamation for Baynard Rustin centennial
    http://www.actonprinciples.org/2012/03/14/city-co

  • 26. Seth from Maryland  |  March 15, 2012 at 12:27 pm

    Senate Confirms Gay Nominee to Federal Bench in 91-6 Vote

    Read more: http://www.towleroad.com/2012/03/senate-confirms-

  • 27. DaveP  |  March 15, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    Very nice!

  • 28. DaveP  |  March 15, 2012 at 12:38 pm

    Also very nice!

  • 29. Jacob  |  March 15, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    communism

  • 30. Jacob  |  March 15, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    I guess only social*sm is verboten. Any explanation, moderators?

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