Gay marriage has created quite a lot of controversy around Europe. In England alone the vote for legalising gay marriage on the 24th of January stirred up strong feelings on a wide scale, though evidence shows that that the idea of same sex marriage is becoming more accepted in the United Kingdom. The final vote in parliament was won by 400 to 175 votes. The most vocal opposition comes from religious groups, but changes in the law will not be forced onto them. Churches will still be able to choose whether or not to marry same-sex couples. Currently the same sex marriage vote will not affect Northern Ireland or Scotland, only England and Wales.
France’s Lower House of Parliament approved a bill to legalize gay marriage on the 2nd of February, with 329 votes in favor and 229 against. This means that they will join 11 other countries including Belgium, Portugal, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Norway and South Africa where same-sex marriage is already legalized. However in many other countries it’s still a very divisive topic like In Ohio, USA a Catholic School worker was fired for supporting gay marriage. It just shows how it needs to change. His personal blog says that his faith is unshaken and he has no regrets for taking a stance on the issue.
Some people do not realise why Marriage is important to gay couples as a civil partnership is a legal relationship exclusively for same-sex couples, distinct from marriage. It is different and it could potentially make the couples feel different. However it offers the same legal treatment as marriage across a range of matters, such as inheritance, pension’s provision, life assurance, child maintenance, next of kin and immigration rights. However people who support gay marriage say the change in legislation is a huge step in the right direction for equal rights.