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Austria Is Now 16th European Country to Grant Marriage Equality

DEC. 5, 2017

BERLIN — Austria joined the ranks of countries recognizing a universal right to marriage on Tuesday, after its highest court ruled that barring same-sex couples from wedding was discriminatory.

The ruling, announced on Tuesday, noted that same-sex couples have increasingly been granted rights equal to those of married, heterosexual couples since civil partnerships were permitted in 2010. Those rights include adoption and support for fertility treatments.

That left sexual orientation as the main difference between those allowed marry and those who could enter only into a legal partnership, which the court found discriminatory.

“Today, the differentiation between marriage and legally registered partnerships can no longer be upheld without discriminating against same-sex couples,” the court said. “For the separation into two legal institutions implies that homosexual individuals are not equal to heterosexuals.”

The court recommended that marriage be opened to all couples starting in 2019, unless Austrian lawmakers change legislation to stipulate otherwise.

With the ruling, Austria becomes the 16th European country to grant marriage equality. A similar law took effect in neighboring Germany in October. The Netherlands was the first country to approve marriage equality; same-sex couples have been marrying there since 2001. Same-sex marriage has been legal across the United States since 2015.

“Today is a truly historic day,” said Helmut Graupner, a lawyer who represented the two women who brought the case before the court.

Other European countries — including Hungary, Italy and the Czech Republic — allow same-sex couples the right to enter into civil partnerships, which grants them many rights equivalent to those of married couples, as was the case in Austria.

But many other European countries in the formerly Communist east — including Bulgaria, Poland, Romania and Slovakia — still deny homosexuals the right to enter into any legally recognized union.

The Austrian People’s Party — whose leader, Sebastian Kurz, won a general election in October and is expected to be sworn in as chancellor in the coming weeks — said it would accept the ruling.

But their potential partners in government, the far-right Freedom Party, criticized the ruling. They said it disrespected the tradition of marriage as a partnership between a man and a woman that is intended for procreation.

“Now there is equal treatment for something that’s not equal,” Herbert Kickl, the party’s secretary general, said in a statement.

Dismay at the ruling also came from Roman Catholic Church leaders in Austria, who denounced the court for “negating the uniqueness” of marriage “which is based on the differences between the sexes.”

The archbishop of Vienna, Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, told the news portal of the Roman Catholic Church in Austria, Kathpress, that he remained hopeful the ruling would at some point be overturned.

“I am confident that in the long term, a view to the order of creation, which humans cannot disregard without coming to harm, will be established once again,” he said.

Although civil partnership had been permitted since 2010, the country’s highest court found that marriage should also be open to same-sex couples.
www.nytimes.com
--Anonymous
replies 99Dec 5, 2017 12:05 PM +00:00

Holy shit, that came out of nowhere!

--Anonymous
replies 1Dec 5, 2017 12:11 PM +00:00

The party of Kurz basically said it will accept the decision, but in a 'we're not happy with this' attutude. (And don't get me started on Kurz himself ... )

Btw, feel free to google the Kickl bloke ... lololol

--Anonymous
replies 2Dec 5, 2017 12:12 PM +00:00
The archbishop of Vienna, Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, told the news portal of the Roman Catholic Church in Austria, Kathpress, that he remained hopeful the ruling would at some point be overturned.
“I am confident that in the long term, a view to the order of creation, which humans cannot disregard without coming to harm, will be established once again,” he said.

Nah, bitch, it's over. And stop making life miserable for people with actual jobs, cunt.

--Anonymous
replies 3Dec 5, 2017 12:15 PM +00:00

Didn't the Freedom Party use to have as a leader the late openly gay Jorg Haider?

www.pengovsky.com
--Anonymous
replies 4Dec 5, 2017 12:17 PM +00:00

R4 I remember celebrating like crazy when that proto-Hitler croaked. That it was revealed he was homosexual with a boy toy and a whole separate life was just the cherry on top. I've said it a hundred times before, but homocons truly are the fucking worst.

--Anonymous
replies 5Dec 5, 2017 12:22 PM +00:00

They've fought gay rights in the ECtHR repeatedly. How sweet for an Austrian court to set them right.

--Anonymous
replies 6Dec 5, 2017 12:28 PM +00:00

I can see Italy being the last country in the EU to aprove marriage equality, even later than Poland. What a dumpster fire of a country.

--Anonymous
replies 7Dec 5, 2017 12:46 PM +00:00

Italians need to break away from the Catholic Church.

Most Italians today don't follow its precepts anyway.

--Anonymous
replies 8Dec 5, 2017 1:27 PM +00:00

For the first time, moving to a foreign country sounds like an attractive option. Australia? Canada? Uruguay? Take your pick.

--Anonymous
replies 9Dec 5, 2017 1:51 PM +00:00

The Catholic Church has no credibility to speak on this at all.

--Anonymous
replies 10Dec 5, 2017 1:56 PM +00:00

i know this will sound ignorant but where, other than the freaking bible and so called religions and fanatics, does it say anywhere gay people cannot be married? is there some legal precedent......what happened to liberty and justice for all?

or is that the republican Just Us ? OK, let me have it.....

--everyone is a fucking human being .... why be against LOVE
replies 11Dec 5, 2017 2:08 PM +00:00

Italy allows same sex union though, you don't even have this option in eastern European countries.

--Anonymous
replies 12Dec 5, 2017 2:13 PM +00:00

Congratulations, Austria! I'm so happy that the tide of equality has finally made it to your country. I wouldn't count Italy out altogether: look at what the brave Irish achieved, through a popular vote, no less!

--Anonymous
replies 13Dec 5, 2017 2:24 PM +00:00

'The Catholic Church' is no excuse for Italy or Poland. Look at Spain, Portugal, even Argentina and Brazil...

--Anonymous
replies 14Dec 5, 2017 2:28 PM +00:00

R14, Exactly!

--R13
replies 15Dec 5, 2017 2:41 PM +00:00

With exception of Greece all East European Countries have defined marriage as a union between one man and one woman in their laws or constitutions! Slovakia is attempting to do the same

--Anonymous
replies 16Dec 5, 2017 2:47 PM +00:00

R16 Add Romania to that list, where the Saint of martyrs, Kim Davis, toured recently.

Those constitutional provisions aren't going anywhere. Not this century, at least. The best way would be to force them through ECtHR to recognize spousal benefits of SSM, performed in other countries.

--Anonymous
replies 17Dec 5, 2017 3:03 PM +00:00
With exception of Greece

What's going on with Greece?

--Anonymous
replies 18Dec 5, 2017 3:11 PM +00:00

Now I can finally go back to Austria and marry Rolf since he lost interest in my needy sister.

--Friedrich von Trapp
replies 19Dec 5, 2017 3:15 PM +00:00

EU Courts have ruled Individual counties can set their own family and marriage laws, and there is no EU right to same-sex marriage

--Anonymous
replies 20Dec 5, 2017 4:10 PM +00:00

R20 No one said the EU courts would ever adjudicate marriage equality, only that they could possibly circumvent the issue by saying non-SSM countries have to recognize spousal benefits. I can't see how that couldn't come into conflict with the freedom of movement someday in the future, especially with all major western countries having SSM.

--Anonymous
replies 21Dec 5, 2017 4:16 PM +00:00

Then dissolve the EU.

--Anonymous
replies 22Dec 5, 2017 4:17 PM +00:00

It’s possible, but it seems the Court has found creative ways to allow countries to not recognize same-sex marriage. Allowing the eastern bloc into the EU was the mistake

--Anonymous
replies 23Dec 5, 2017 4:18 PM +00:00

R22 What are you on about? The EU is the best thing to ever happen to gays in non-SSM EU countries. You've no idea just how many find better lives in more accepting EU countries.

--Anonymous
replies 24Dec 5, 2017 4:20 PM +00:00

It is a bit of a strategic gamble with eastern European countries. The idea is you offer them EU membership and they slowly adapt to western custom and at the same time they provide a barrier for Russian aggression.

They'll come around eventually, it just takes time.

--Anonymous
replies 25Dec 5, 2017 4:22 PM +00:00

R23 The Court hasn't found any creative way to do anything regarding SSM because it lacks the authority to do so.

Allowing the eastern bloc into the EU was the mistake

They would have gone to Russia otherwise and we would have several Russian satellites on our doorstep right now instead of just the one. All in due time; they're getting there, albeit slowly.

--Anonymous
replies 26Dec 5, 2017 4:25 PM +00:00

Well, it looks like I plagiarized R25. Holy shit, great minds think alike or what?

--r26
replies 27Dec 5, 2017 4:27 PM +00:00

Russia and global cultural conservatives have been able to successfully use gay rights in the bigger fight against the decadent, godless West. Eastern Europe and Africa view fighting gay rights as a proxy for fighting the West.

--Anonymous
replies 28Dec 5, 2017 5:51 PM +00:00

Very good Ostereich (Eastern Reich) and center of Aspie Land!

--Anonymous
replies 29Dec 5, 2017 6:23 PM +00:00

Took them long enough. Austria's infested with religious nuts. I had an Austrian acquaintance in the 90s - he said he was being forced to pay 1/10th of his income to the church, under some archaic church tax law. A compulsory religious levy imposed on citizens in the 20th C is just insane.

--Anonymous
replies 30Dec 5, 2017 6:39 PM +00:00

Bggx

--Anonymous
replies 31Dec 7, 2017 4:26 AM +00:00

Cardinal Christoph Schönborn will likely be a leading contender to succeed Pope Francis.

--Anonymous
replies 32Dec 7, 2017 5:01 AM +00:00

Any Western European countries still left? I can understand Eastern European countries lagging behind here.

--Anonymous
replies 33Dec 7, 2017 5:16 AM +00:00

Switzerland is the most noteworthy laggard; it probably doesn't get the same level of attention because it's not in the EU. That said, it will probably be legalized there in a year or two.

--Anonymous
replies 34Dec 7, 2017 5:26 AM +00:00

R34, what's causing the delay in Switzerland?

--Anonymous
replies 35Dec 7, 2017 2:21 PM +00:00

Andorra, San Marino, Northern Ireland hold out

--Anonymous
replies 36Dec 7, 2017 3:52 PM +00:00

Also Liechtenstein

--Anonymous
replies 37Dec 7, 2017 3:53 PM +00:00

Wonderful news but I'm confused as I thought it was already legal in Austria as Peter Thiel married his partner here about a month ago did he not?

--Anonymous
replies 38Dec 7, 2017 6:09 PM +00:00

Switzerland’s government is conservative, and even if it passes Parliament, it will be subject to a nationwide referendum

--Anonymous
replies 39Dec 7, 2017 6:21 PM +00:00

The Swiss parliament has extended by two years its deadline for deciding on allowing gay marriage. A gay rights' group has welcomed the move to allow the issues to be looked into in more detail. Parliament has given a parliamentary legal affairs committee until summer 2019 to draw up a bill on implementing the “Marriage for everyone”external link parliamentary initiative, which calls for gay couples to be allowed to marry.

--Anonymous
replies 40Dec 7, 2017 6:24 PM +00:00
Italians need to break away from the Catholic Church. Most Italians today don't follow its precepts anyway.

Clearly someone who doesn't live here or has never even visited. Really, please refrain from speaking for "most" Italians when you demonstrably have no clue what you're talking about.

--Anonymous
replies 41Dec 7, 2017 6:26 PM +00:00

Then please try to clarify how Italy can be so westernized and secular, while still being in the thrall of the Catholic church at the same time?

--Anonymous
replies 42Dec 7, 2017 6:29 PM +00:00

Italy has a machismo and family culture. Single people remain living with parents until they married.

--Anonymous
replies 43Dec 7, 2017 6:36 PM +00:00

Secularisation does not equal rejection or hatred of Catholicism. Many gay Italians still respect the church, attend mass and would like nothing better than to be accepted into the fold. I'm friends with an Italian/Spanish couple who are finalising a gruelling adoption process of a child from the Congo and a sympathetic priest in their town has agreed to have him baptised. A significant gesture of support because this is an important rite and milestone for most Italian children.

--Anonymous
replies 44Dec 7, 2017 6:42 PM +00:00

YES, and a lot of people who don’t go to church regularly are still believers

--Anonymous
replies 45Dec 7, 2017 7:24 PM +00:00

^ Exactly.

--Anonymous
replies 46Dec 8, 2017 3:12 AM +00:00

There's an anti-Catholic vein running through WASP Americans that make them reflexively blame the Catholic church for their woes when, in fact, the 1). The Church doesn't have that much power in the U.S. as most Americans aren't even Catholic 2). Catholics, despite church doctrine, are actually more accepting, tolerant and welcoming of gay people than the virulently homophobic and hateful protestant/evangelical sects, which just happen to be more influential in America than the Catholic church is in nominally Catholic countries.

Seriously, I'd rather sit down for a beer with Pope Francis (he does like beer) than be in the same zip code as Pat Robertson.

--Anonymous
replies 47Dec 8, 2017 5:10 AM +00:00

R47 It really needs to be taken on a country-by-country basis. Pope Francis, the same one you want to have a beer with, torpedoed the second SSM referendum in my country so we lost by an even larger margin than when that Ratzi creature led the opposition for the first referendum. I'm talking bussing the parishioners to the ballot after the Sunday mass levels of evil.

It's an objective fact that the Catholic Church wields an extraordinary amount of power in some Catholic countries like mine and they are as homophobic as the worst evangelicals in America. They just don't have to shout as loudly because they're aware they'll win with even the faintest of efforts. And saying the Catholic Church isn't to blame for Italy not having SSM is delusional; that's literally the only reason they don't have it yet.

--Anonymous
replies 48Dec 8, 2017 5:58 AM +00:00

Never cease to be amazed at how americans throw buzzwords about Italy (Catholic Church, Machismo, Mafia...) like you had the slightest idea of what you are talking about. Your understanding of that country is completely maligned by your WASPy mainstream culture and also and viewed through the prism of modern italian-american culture, which is a gross parody of traditional italian values. You are completely out of your depth discussing it.

--Anonymous
replies 49Dec 8, 2017 6:15 AM +00:00

The Orthodox Church is the generally biggest obstacle to gay rights in Bulgaria, Belarus, Moldova, Greece, Ukraine, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Romania. But in Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Lithuania, Slovenia, and Italy, Catholicism is the biggest obstacle. Islam is the biggest impediment in Albania, Kosovo, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Estonia is one of the most secular and Unbelieving countries on the planet, but it’s culture is not very accepting of homosexuality.

--Anonymous
replies 50Dec 8, 2017 7:25 AM +00:00

The only Western European country left now is Switzerland.

--Anonymous
replies 51Dec 8, 2017 7:42 AM +00:00

Did they apologize for starting WWI and giving the world Hitler?

--Anonymous
replies 52Dec 8, 2017 8:05 AM +00:00

ADD San Marino

--Anonymous
replies 53Dec 8, 2017 8:07 AM +00:00

Ghgg

--Anonymous
replies 54Dec 8, 2017 8:28 AM +00:00

Why is Slovakia so antigay?

--Anonymous
replies 55Dec 8, 2017 9:08 AM +00:00
Single people remain living with parents until they married

This is a problem ?

--Latinos
replies 56Dec 8, 2017 9:31 AM +00:00
Your understanding of that country is completely maligned by your WASPy mainstream culture and also and viewed through the prism of modern italian-american culture, which is a gross parody of traditional italian values.

Italians: Marcello Mastroianni

Italian-Americans: Tony Danza

--I get your point
replies 57Dec 8, 2017 10:13 AM +00:00
I'm talking bussing the parishioners to the ballot after the Sunday mass levels of evil.

I think calling Pope Francis "evil" is taking it a bit far. Remember, this is the same guy that was not amused by the Kim Davis meeting that was sprung upon him by plotting malcontents and reacted by demoting the cardinal that orchestrated it from his position as ambassador to the United States. And the meeting happened the same day he'd received a long-time openly gay friend and his partner. I wouldn't call that as "homophobic as the worst evangelicals in America". Not the same.

The day before Pope Francis met anti-gay clerk Kim Davis in Washington, he held a private meeting with Yayo Grassi, an openly gay man.
CNN
--Anonymous
replies 58Dec 8, 2017 10:35 AM +00:00

He's still responsible for pushing a distortion of the Torah.

--Anonymous
replies 59Dec 8, 2017 10:37 AM +00:00

I like how Austria was neutral during the Cold War. Of course, location, location, location.

--Anonymous
replies 60Dec 8, 2017 11:38 AM +00:00

Catholics talk about being anti-Gay, in some places, but they mostly brush it under the rug, with all the other things they talk about. The smart ones know what it means to be human. At least in the West. As for the non-West, well, I can’t say.

--Anonymous
replies 61Dec 8, 2017 11:43 AM +00:00

The fact is, all major religion in the world class homosexuality as a sin. And in my experience, Catholics, especially the ones I'm aquatinted with, tend to be the most accepting and progressive.

--Anonymous
replies 62Dec 8, 2017 10:22 PM +00:00

Hindus? Buddhists?

--Anonymous
replies 63Dec 9, 2017 2:38 AM +00:00

What's with the sudden interest in Austria here at DL? I was flabbergasted when the "Would you Ever Date an Austrian?" thread got 150+ replies.

Is it because of their twinky new leader?

ichef.bbci.co.uk
--Anonymous
replies 64Dec 9, 2017 4:20 AM +00:00

Hindus and Buddhists too, r63.

--Anonymous
replies 65Dec 9, 2017 4:32 AM +00:00

Anti-Western sentiment and renewed religious fervor has made it very hard to make progress on gay Rights in Eastern Europe. Russia is setting the pace ok the issue

--Anonymous
replies 66Dec 9, 2017 7:03 AM +00:00

In Italy it's a mixture of traditional values, religious adherence and machismo.

--Anonymous
replies 67Dec 9, 2017 12:07 PM +00:00

R64, probably.

C'mon, admit it, you'd love to enter Sebastian's backdoor, too.

--Anonymous
replies 68Dec 9, 2017 1:35 PM +00:00

Btw, he's rumoured to be gay or at least bi.

Just google him and his 'girlfriend'. Tbh, if she were my gf, I'd become gay, too.

--Anonymous
replies 69Dec 9, 2017 1:38 PM +00:00

Just saw this. Wow, that's great!

--Anonymous
replies 70Dec 9, 2017 2:08 PM +00:00

R67 is correct

--Anonymous
replies 71Dec 10, 2017 5:40 AM +00:00

Bermuda is in the process of amending its comstitution To ban same-sex marriage.

--Anonymous
replies 72Dec 12, 2017 6:04 AM +00:00

^ guess I'll never go to Bermuda

--Anonymous
replies 73Dec 12, 2017 6:26 AM +00:00

Bermuda only wants the rich.

--Anonymous
replies 74Dec 12, 2017 4:17 PM +00:00

ITS VERY conservative

--Anonymous
replies 75Dec 12, 2017 8:48 PM +00:00

austria is by and large the MOST conservative country in europe, as in old ladies sipping tea. that they have no problem with this shows what a no-brainer it all is

--Anonymous
replies 76Dec 12, 2017 8:50 PM +00:00

I think Italy is more conservative than Austria. Probably Poland too.

--Anonymous
replies 77Dec 12, 2017 9:13 PM +00:00

All the Eastern European nations are much more conservative than Austria.

--Anonymous
replies 78Dec 13, 2017 3:54 AM +00:00

Norway and Finland are extremely conservative.

--Anonymous
replies 79Dec 13, 2017 4:06 AM +00:00

Not really

--Anonymous
replies 80Dec 13, 2017 9:28 AM +00:00

R62, Jews are extremely far ahead of the other two Abrahamic religions on gay rights put together.

--Anonymous
replies 81Dec 13, 2017 9:37 AM +00:00

The rejection of the Godhood of the Jewish God is the root cause of all bigotry.

--Anonymous
replies 82Dec 13, 2017 9:37 AM +00:00

Thjgff

--Anonymous
replies 83Dec 13, 2017 5:14 PM +00:00

Use your words, R83.

--Anonymous
replies 84Dec 13, 2017 5:16 PM +00:00

Poland may soon ban shopping on Sundays. On Friday, November 24, the lower house of the Polish legislature (the Sejm) approved a Sunday shopping ban, 254-156. The ruling Law and Justice (PiS) Party has presented this as a way to uphold the nation’s Catholic character.

--Anonymous
replies 85Dec 13, 2017 5:53 PM +00:00

The Orthodox Church is the generally biggest obstacle to gay rights in Bulgaria, Belarus, Moldova, Greece, Ukraine, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Romania. But in Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Lithuania, Slovenia, and Italy, Catholicism is the biggest obstacle. Islam is the biggest impediment in Albania, Kosovo, and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

And what's the biggest obstacle in red state America? How many Catholics live in places like Alabama, Oklahoma, Idaho, Montana and Mississippi?

--Anonymous
replies 86Dec 13, 2017 6:56 PM +00:00

Religious fundies are almost always intolerant. It's the craving for certainty.

--Anonymous
replies 87Dec 14, 2017 2:41 AM +00:00

Southern Baptists are America’s most virulent and formidable antigay continent

--Anonymous
replies 88Dec 14, 2017 2:21 PM +00:00

Ttfdds

--Anonymous
replies 89Dec 15, 2017 12:29 PM +00:00

Oh dear, R88.

--Connie Tingent
replies 90Dec 15, 2017 12:36 PM +00:00

R7 Greece is worse The Catholic Pope is liberal compared to the Greek Orthodox Church Patriarch. Who is also the Ecumenical Patriarch of all Orthodox Christians. Greece is very homophobic for a country with such a homosexual past.

--Anonymous
replies 91Dec 15, 2017 12:43 PM +00:00

Nobody in Greece cares about Ancient Greek homosexuality. It’s irrelevant to today

--Anonymous
replies 92Dec 15, 2017 12:44 PM +00:00

And that's why they're only a second-world country at best today.

--Anonymous
replies 93Dec 15, 2017 12:46 PM +00:00

UH OKAY

--Anonymous
replies 94Dec 15, 2017 12:52 PM +00:00

R91 The Catholic Pope is liberal compared to American Evangelicals.

--Anonymous
replies 95Dec 15, 2017 7:24 PM +00:00

R99 No I said and meant Orthodox Christians. The Orthodox countries are far less tolerant towards gayness/marriage equality than Western Catholic countries.

R92 The Greeks all know about their gay past and try to hide it under the rug. They aren't fooling anybody.

--Anonymous
replies 96Dec 15, 2017 7:31 PM +00:00

No, they just don’t care about their ancient oast. Why should they? It’s irrelevant today.

--Anonymous
replies 97Dec 16, 2017 6:54 AM +00:00

Their ancient past

--Anonymous
replies 98Dec 16, 2017 6:54 AM +00:00

The Czech Republic has been shockingly antigay

--Anonymous
replies 99Dec 17, 2017 6:15 AM +00:00