Prelate: Argentina's New Law Slights Orphans

Senate OKs Same-Sex «Marriage» After Heated Debate

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BUENOS AIRES, Argentina, JULY 16, 2010 ( Despite widespread public protest, Argentina passed Thursday a law to recognize same-sex «marriage.»

The debate took 15 hours and the 33-27 vote with three abstentions was made at 4 a.m..

Argentina thus becomes the first Latin American nation to give same-sex unions the same rights as married couples, including the right to adopt children. They also have the same inheritance rights and social benefits.

President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner promoted the measure, and with it the civil code is reformed. The terms «husband» and «wife,» for example, have been replaced by «contracting parties.»
Four Argentinean cities were already recognizing same-sex civil unions, and nine couples had already «wed,» though their unions were later challenged. Now with the Senate approval, the challenges will be refused.

Falling first

Other Latin American nations have taken steps toward recognizing same-sex «marriage,» but none as sweeping as Argentina. It is the first nation to legalize these «marriages» nationwide, and to grant them all the same rights.

Previously, only Mexico City recognized same-sex «marriage,» with some states in Mexico and Brazil, as well as Uruguay, recognizing same-sex civil unions, which do not carry all the same rights as a marriage. In Uruguay, for example, same-sex couples can adopt but not marry. Colombia recognizes same-sex civil unions with financial benefits (such as inheritance, drawing a pension, and health insurance.)

Argentina, in fact, will be only the 10th nation in the world with such a liberal law (following the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Canada, South Africa, Norway, Sweden, Portugal and Iceland, with Portugal and Iceland also passing their measures just this year). In the United States, same-sex «marriage» is recognized in only five states and Washington, D.C..

Mommies and daddies

Archbishop Alfonso Delgado Evers of San Juan, Argentina, lamented that the law does not consider the most vulnerable: orphans who will «become an ‘object’ of affection instead of being a ‘subject’ of love and warmth in a family with a father and mother.»

On Tuesday, some 200,000 demonstrators marched on Congress to protest the measure, bearing the slogan «We Want a Mommy and Daddy for Our Children.»

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