(MEXICO CITY) Mexico City lawmakers yesterday passed a bill legalizing same-sex marriage, making the city the first in Latin America to legalize gay marriage. The bill passed with a vote of 39-20.
The vote changed the definition of marriage in the city’s civil code from recognizing marriages as being between a man and a woman to “the free uniting of two people”. A second resolution allowing gay married couples to legally adopt children was also passed.
Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard is expected to sign the bill into law.
Although homosexuality is stifled in much of the country, a recent report by Reuters homosexuality has “come out of the closet” in Mexico City, which has a large and very visible gay community.
“Mexico City has put itself in the vanguard,” said legislator Victor Hugo Romo. “This is a historic day.
"For centuries, unfair laws prohibited marriage between whites and blacks, between Europeans and Indians. Today, all the barriers have disappeared."
Mexico’s Catholic archdiocese has stated that legalizing gay marriage is immoral and will destroy families.
“Recognizing homosexual civil unions as marriage goes against the public good and the emotional development of our children,” said Giovanni Guiterrez, a city lawmaker from Calderón’s National Action Party.
“[These lawmakers] have given Mexicans a very bitter Christmas,” said Armando Martinez Gomez, president of the College of Catholic Attorneys in a December 22 interview with The LA Times. “They have eliminated the word ‘father’ and ‘mother.’”