The bill passed in April, but wasn't official until President Francois Hollande signed it, making France the country highest populous country for same-sex marriage.
The equal-marrige bill did not pass without protest. Once it became evident President Hollande intended to keep his campaign promise, anti-gay rallies were held in the streets of Paris by conservative religious group (Sounds familiar). Sadly, reports by organizations for gay rights say there was a rise in gay and lesbian attacks. The bill passed in the French Parliament 321 to 225 vote, April 1, and since then, the strength of the opposition has surprised many. Protestors say they will not give up their fight, but President Holland has made it clear he will not accept any disruption of the bill.
Last month, Justice Minister Christiane Taubira said:
“We believe that the first weddings will be beautiful and that they’ll bring a breeze of joy, and that those who are opposed to them today will surely be confounded when they are overcome with the happiness of the newlyweds and the families,” she said.
Along with France, 14 countries around the world have legalized equal/gay marriage:
— New Zealand (in 2013)
— Uruguay (2013)
— Denmark (2012)
— Argentina (2010)
— Portugal (2010)
— Iceland (2010)
— Sweden (2009)
— Norway (2009)
— South Africa (2006)
— Spain (2005)
— Canada (2005)
— Belgium (2003)
— The Netherlands (2000)
In the U.S., *Brazil and Mexico, same-sex marriage has been legalized only in some jurisdictions.
Here is a video showing some of France's journey leading up to today:
It is a happy time for same-sex couples as well as for all the French citizens who've supported equal marriage rights. We look forward to the same celebration in America soon. Until then, Vive la France! (Long Live France!)
Update: *In Brazil, it is not legal in all jurisdictions; however, it is 'illegal' to deny same-sex marriage. The good is you can be married in Brazil. The bad news is it's still not legal. Go figure: http://www.care2.com/...l (Thanks for the heads up, Daily Kos 'Ebohiman')