News has just broken in the last few minutes that France has become the latest country to allow same-sex marriage, after their parliament voted it through.
It’s hard to see it not happening here, now: it feels unstoppable. In Europe, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Spain and Portugal already have it, some of them for more than a decade. Worldwide, Argentina, Uruguay, Canada, South Africa and (as of last week) New Zealand, plus nine states of the US have done the same. It’s far too early to say that places that don’t recognise same-sex marriage are isolated, but their numbers are thinning fast.
Demographically, things are changing. Young people are far more likely to support the idea than are older ones; presumably partly because they’ve grown up in a world where homosexuality is less of a taboo, and are more likely to know gay people personally. Support for same-sex marriage is also correlated with higher education levels, and the world is getting more educated.
There have been protests in France, and it’s going to be controversial for a while. But surely, as in the places where it’s been passed for a while, it’ll become a standard fact of life, and they’ll all wonder what the fuss was about. And then we’ll follow them.