French Gay Marriage Shambles

Trust frogs to make a mess of things. First they allow gay couples to marry. Then it turns out that not all of them are allowed to marry. And then the fascists try to hijack the constitution to invalidate the constitution. They tried that one in 1934, too, in a blatant push to invite Adolf Hitler into the country. Gay marriage has opened Pandora's box on persistent French fascism.



The French Constitutional Council has strengthened the rights of gays and lesbians on October 18, 2013: The senior judges of the "Conseil constitutionnel" refused to allow a lawsuit floored by conservative mayors; the intent and goal of the motion was to undermine French constitutional rights with the proclaimed aim to refuse to marry gay couples on grounds of their sexual orientation. The council ruled unequivocally that their mandatory obligation by law to conduct marriage ceremonies is constitutional.

In France, mayors traditionally conduct marriage ceremonies. The group of mayors in question had argued that they should be able to refuse to conduct marriage ceremonies for gay couples on grounds of conscientious objection. They tried to spearhead their attack on the French constitution by the guaranteed right of conscience and religious freedom. The argument was roundly refuted by the chief judges in their five-page verdict. They ruled that the law is consistent with the state's duty of neutrality which weighs heavier than an individuals right to apply their subjective conscientious objections. Mayors intending to renege on their oath on the French constitution and wanting to marry only heterosexual couples face heavy fines or imprisonment.

The mayors in question, more intent on destabilizing France through its constitution than on fulfilling their oath to the public, have announced their intention to move the motion to the European Court of Human Rights. Their spokesman Jean-Michel Colo is mayor of the southwestern French city of Arcangues. He stated: "The Constitutional Council was manipulated by politics (something mayors never are). This is a political decision (but their blatant try to destabilize France is obviously not)."

The group of 'conservative' mayors is backed in their move by the fascist group "Manif Pour Tous" which is openly hostile to any form of equality or human rights (the Tea Party of French politics, in fact) . It staged violent protests all over France in recent months to prevent parliament from doing its constitutional work and from exerting its right on conscience and religious freedom. Their statement read that the mayors had "demonstrated great courage."

Parliament, since the last election controlled by the Socialist Party, had approved the marriage bill in April 2013. A month later, the Constitutional Council declared the law for constitutional in principle. The law guarantees almost the same rights in gay marriage as for heterosexual married couples. The one existent limitation of the law is the access to artificial insemination which is explicitly denied to gay couples.

But trust France to make a mess of things. Recently it has also become public that homosexuals from eleven countries are willfully and discriminatory excluded from contracting a same-sex marriage in France. The reason behind these exclusions are typically French (or American, British, and several others I could mention). Bilateral agreements with dictators in Algeria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Cambodia, Kosovo, Laos, Morocco, Montenegro, Poland, Serbia, Slovenia and Tunisia take precedence over the constitution, it would seem.

It might be the well-known case of economic interests of government officials weighing more heavily than the right of the people they are sworn to protect and govern. We all know how that one works. France partly follows the laws of the home country of a person (when it suits them). All eleven countries listed prohibit homosexual marriage. Just a few days ago, the mayor of the city of Chambery prohibited the marriage of a Frenchman with a Moroccan. The case is already on record with the European Court of Human Rights.


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