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Colombia's Senate Considering Marriage Equality Bill Today

Colombia's Senate is considering a marriage equality bill today. They were set to vote on the bill last week but it was postponed until today after hours of debate.

ColombiaAndrés Duque has a good post about the current situation there.

A Towleroad reader in Colombia writes me that chances are very slim for the bill today. It must pass with at least 51 votes and neither side has enough.  His prediction is that the bill will die because of a deficit of votes on either side and the law will be in a sort of limbo because the Supreme Court has ruled that Congress must legislate on the issue before June. Which may mean another court battle...

Last week the Colombia Law and Business post wrote:

Why Is This Debate Happening Now?

The Colombian Consitutional Court issued a ruling in 2001 (Sentencia C577/11) that requires the Congress to act by June 20, 2013, or else same-sex couples can present themselves to legal notaries to contract for their legal rights. The Court ruled that same-sex couples have equal legal rights to found a family, but there is a “deficit of legal protection” for such couples under current law, and ordered the Congress to eliminate that deficit by June 20, 2013. The Court previously ruled that the right given to heterosexual couples to a legally recognized non-marital union must be accorded to same-sex couples.

Some people claim that the Colombian Constitution and Civil Code refer to marriage as between a man and a woman, but this doesn’t make the point they think. Both were adopted when there was no consideration of same-sex marriage, and therefore it cannot be said that same-sex marriage was intended to be prohibited. Furthermore, neither provision says “only” a man and a woman can contract marriage.

More importantly, Art. 13 of the Constitution guarantees equality before the law. (This is also a human right guaranteed by the American Convention on Human Rights, which is binding on Colombia. See more about this below.) To allow marriage equality is to reconcile the marriage and equality clauses; to prohibit same-sex marriage is to ignore the equality clause altogether and to invent an intention for the family clause that never existed.

Those wishing to follow the news on Twitter can follow the hashtag #MatrimonioIgualitarioYA.

Also, check out this powerful video from last week's debate.

Andrés Duque, who translated the clip, writes, "It's a psychologist named Martha Lucía Cuéllar who spoke in favor or marriage equality when debate started last Thursday. She speaks movingly about her gay son and the death of his partner and puts every single Senator on notice in case they vote against the marriage equality bill."

Turn on annotations for translation.


Colombian Senate to Vote on Marriage Equality Today

Will Colombia be next?

ColombiaThe Colombia Law and Business Post writes:

Why Is This Debate Happening Now?

The Colombian Consitutional Court issued a ruling in 2001 (Sentencia C577/11) that requires the Congress to act by June 20, 2013, or else same-sex couples can present themselves to legal notaries to contract for their legal rights. The Court ruled that same-sex couples have equal legal rights to found a family, but there is a “deficit of legal protection” for such couples under current law, and ordered the Congress to eliminate that deficit by June 20, 2013. The Court previously ruled that the right given to heterosexual couples to a legally recognized non-marital union must be accorded to same-sex couples.

Some people claim that the Colombian Constitution and Civil Code refer to marriage as between a man and a woman, but this doesn’t make the point they think. Both were adopted when there was no consideration of same-sex marriage, and therefore it cannot be said that same-sex marriage was intended to be prohibited. Furthermore, neither provision says “only” a man and a woman can contract marriage.

More importantly, Art. 13 of the Constitution guarantees equality before the law. (This is also a human right guaranteed by the American Convention on Human Rights, which is binding on Colombia. See more about this below.) To allow marriage equality is to reconcile the marriage and equality clauses; to prohibit same-sex marriage is to ignore the equality clause altogether and to invent an intention for the family clause that never existed.

More on this as it develops...


Popular Colombian Fashion Model Natalia Paris Claims Eating Chicken Turns Boys Gay: VIDEO

In 2010, Bolivian President Evo Morales caused laughter to ripple through the audience at a conference on climate change when he suggested that eating hormone-injected chicken caused men to deviate into homosexuality.

ParisNow, a popular Colombian fashion model, Natalia Paris, is making headlines for the same nonsense, according to Colombia Reports:

Paris, a well known figure in Colombia, drew her conclusions from reports claiming that chickens were being injected with female hormones designed to speed up growth, “which means that these seven, eight, nine and 10 year old children [who are eating chicken] are having their feminine hormones accelerated...and are starting to become homosexual,” said Paris.

President of National Federation for Colombian Poultry Farmers (FENAVI), Andrés Fernando Moncada, responded to the model’s controversial claims with indignation.

"When you hear this kind of a statement from a public figure like Natalia Paris, we must express our total outrage," said Fernando. He further added that there were no chickens in Colombia or anywhere in the world that are injected with hormones to accelerate growth, dismissing Paris' claims as "urban myths."

Video, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Popular Colombian Fashion Model Natalia Paris Claims Eating Chicken Turns Boys Gay: VIDEO" »


Couple's Gay Nativity Scene Stirs Social Media Furor in Colombia

Gay_nativity

Andrés Vásquez and Felipe Cárdenas, a gay couple in Colombia, have reportedly stirred up a furor on social media after a photo of their nativity scene featuring two Josephs made its way on to the web, the NY Daily News reports:

Political analyst Vásquez and entrepreneur Felipe have been together for four years and were united by a civil union, the closest thing to marriage for homosexuals in Colombia, three months ago. The gay rights activists told the Diario Veloz website that they set up the scene, a picture of which was then posted on Facebook, in the hope that it would help in bringing about reform in the country's gay marriage laws.

A bill to legalize gay marriage is currently being looked at by the country's politicians and has passed the first of four debates. But it has been dubbed as “unconstitutional” by the nation's conservative lawmakers.

Vásquez told the website: 'We did it because we believe in Colombia. We have lived in different cities in the world and we prefer to return to our country.

 “We are beginning to build [a better country] through our new union,” he said.


Marriage Equality Bill Advances in First of Four Votes in Colombia

A Colombian Senate committee has approved a marriage equality measure, advancing it for further consideration, On Top reports:

ColombiaWith a 10-5 vote, the First Committee (Comision Primera) has approved Senator Armando Benedetti's proposed measure. Benedetti's proposal originally sought to create civil unions for gay and lesbian couples. He has since altered the language to marriage. However, Benedetti's bill would not give married gay couples the right to adopt children.

Tuesday's vote is the first of four needed for the measure to become law.

“In this country homosexuals already have economic rights and social security, therefore it is time to move toward matrimony,” Benedetti is quoted as saying by El Espectador.

In July 2011, Colombia's Constitutional Court ruled that the legislature must pass a same-sex marriage bill within two years or the courts will legalize it.


Gay American Can Adopt Colombian Sons, Says Court

ChandlerBurrSons

After a year of legal battles, Colombia's Constitutional Court yesterday ruled that American Chandler Burr, a gay author and former New York Times critic, can formally adopt two boys, aged 10 and 13, from the South American nation.

Burr's adoption had previously been revoked after Colombian authorities found out he's gay.

The court ruled that adoption agencies and officials "cannot rely on appearances, preconceptions or prejudices" when reviewing potential parents. Burr's lawyer called the decision "historic" and praised the court for eschewing "irrational religious and conservative influences."


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