Yes, you heard us correctly! Our lovely neighbors down south just legalized gay marriage. While Mexico’s Supreme Court didn’t explicity allow for same-sex marriage, they did rule that state laws which prohibit the practice are discriminatory, therefore striking down any legal barriers for same-sex couples. The reason that you haven’t been hearing about this in the national headlines is probably because these rulings were passed quietly, with “little fanfare” as this New York Times article asserts.
(Pictured above: a same-sex couple who was just permitted to get married under the new laws)
This outcome not only set an unprecedented new standard for Mexico, the second largest country in Latin America, but is also just one more positive sign in the growing trend of same-sex marriage legalization. Already Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil have some form of legalized gay marriage (especially good for Brazil, Latin America’s largest and most populated country). This landmark ruling from such a prominent country could help to encourage even more countries to follow suit (especially those with close political ties to Mexico).
The biggest question that now remains is when the U.S., now officially sandwiched between two countries where marriage equality exists, will follow suit. No longer a question of “if,” LGBTQ couples all across the country, some of whom live in the 37 states which allow for same-sex marriage through state legislation or court decisions, anxiously wait for the U.S. Supreme Court to rule whether gay marriage should be legalized on a federal level (thus superceding the 13 states where same-sex marriage is explicity banned). The ruling is expected to come out some time before the 2014 Supreme Court session comes to a close (by the end of June).
We can only hope that Mexico’s action will help promote some willingness from same-sex marriage opposers on the nine-member Supreme Court, enough so to rule favorably and help ensure that couples will be able to wed and receive the same benefits regardless of sexual orientation. The time for archaic and discriminatory thinking is over–America needs this change for the better!