home
arts
literature
social sciences
special features
discussion
about glbtq
   search

 
   Encyclopedia
   Discussion
 
 
 
 
Advertising Opportunities
Press Kit
Research Guide
Terms of Service
Privacy Policy
Copyright
 
site guide
search tips
research guide
editors & contributors
contact us
send feedback
write the editor
 
 
 
 
subscribe
Subscribe to our free e-mail newsletter to receive a spotlight on glbtq culture every month.
e-mail address:
 
 
 
  unsubscribe
 
 
Popular Topics in Literature
García Lorca, Federico García Lorca, Federico
The works of García Lorca, internationally recognized as Spain's most prominent lyric poet and dramatist of the twentieth century, are filled with thinly veiled homosexual motifs and themes.
 
Musical Theater
There has always been homosexual involvement in American musical theatre and a homosexual sensibility even in straight musicals, and recently the Broadway musical has welcomed openly homosexual themes and situations.
 
Michelangelo Buonarroti Michelangelo Buonarroti
Best known for his genius in art and architecture, Michelangelo was also an accomplished author of homoerotic poetry.
 
African-American Literature: Gay Male African-American Literature: Gay Male
The African-American gay male literary tradition consists of a substantial body of texts and includes some of the most gifted writers of the twentieth century.
 
Camp Camp
Combining elements of incongruity, theatricality, and exaggeration, camp is a form of humor that helps homosexuals cope with a hostile environment.
 
Hughes, Langston Hughes, Langston
Langston Hughes, whose literary legacy is enormous and varied, was closeted, but homosexuality was an important influence on his literary imagination, and many of his poems may be read as gay texts.
 
Baldwin, James Arthur Baldwin, James Arthur
James Baldwin, a pioneering figure in twentieth-century literature, wrote sustained and articulate challenges to American racism and mandatory heterosexuality.
 
Wilde, Oscar Wilde, Oscar
Oscar Wilde is important both as an accomplished writer and as a symbolic figure who exemplified a way of being homosexual at a pivotal moment in the emergence of gay consciousness.
 
Congratulations
 
Congratulations to the United Kingdom
Posted by: Claude J. Summers on 03/28/14
Last updated on: 03/29/14
 
Bookmark and Share

Congratulations to the United Kingdom on the arrival of marriage equality in England and Wales. Although the Same-Sex Marriage Act of 2013 officially went into effect on March 13, 2014, the first new weddings took place soon after midnight on March 29. In honor of the historic event, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg had ordered the rainbow flag to be flown at Whitehall, the administrative offices of the U.K.'s central government.

In consultation with Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude, Deputy Prime Minister Clegg ordered that the rainbow flag be flown atop the Cabinet Office and the Scotland Office from the afternoon of March 28 until the morning of March 30 to mark the historic arrival of marriage equality in England and Wales.

He told PinkNews that "As all the same-sex couples make their vows this weekend, they will be making history."

He added, "Finally, after years of campaigning, any couple who wants to get married can get married. Together we've made our country a place where we celebrate love equally, gay or straight--and for that reason we should all be raising a glass."

Other cabinet offices and other government facilities have also hoisted the rainbow flag to mark the occasion. For example, on March 28, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles and Communities Minister Baroness Stowall raised the rainbow flag outside the Department for Communities and Local Government in Westminster. At city halls in places as diverse as Islington, Brighton, and Hove the rainbow flag is also flying. Some city halls opened at midnight on March 29 to facilitate the first weddings.

Even some fierce opponents of same-sex marriage have softened their opposition as marriage equality has arrived. For example, as Andrew Brown reports in The Guardian, the Archbishop of Canterbury has signalled that the Church of England will mount no more resistance to gay marriage among churchgoers.

"I think the church has reacted by fully accepting that it's the law, and should react on Saturday by continuing to demonstrate in word and action, the love of Christ for every human being," the Archbishop said.

As Brown notes, "His comments mark a shift in tone, if not substance, from a letter from the bishops last month that attempted to forbid the clergy from marrying same-sex partners, and which led to a furious backlash from supporters. At least seven clergy couples are preparing to marry in defiance of their bishops, though none are known to be planning a public ceremony."

More positively, the Bishop of Buckingham has welcomed the arrival of marriage equality. In an article written for PinkNews, the Bishop of Buckingham, Dr Alan Wilson, said that allowing same-sex couples to marry enriches the public understanding of what it means to be married.

"This weekend marks a significant milestone on the way towards a more equal and just society. I welcome the good news wholeheartedly, the Bishop writes. "I am sure all Christians will too, sooner or later, because equality and justice are core Christian values."

He added, "I look forward to the day when these vows can be made in Church."

The Same-Sex Marriage Act of 2013 extended marriage equality to England and Wales. The Scottish Parliament subsequently adopted its own marriage equality legislation. Same-sex weddings in Scotland will begin in the fall.

The only major part of the U.K. without marriage equality on the horizon is Northern Ireland, whose assembly has twice rejected marriage equality bills. In order to commemorate the arrival of marriage equality in England and Wales, the Equal Marriage Northern Ireland Campaign held demonstrations in Belfast and Foyle on March 28.

John O'Doherty, chair of the Equal Marriage Northern Ireland Campaign said, "We are demonstrating today, to remind our political leaders and representatives that we do not want to be left behind in the march toward full legislative equality for LGB&/T people and their families."

On March 28, Prime Minister David Cameron issued a statement welcoming marriage equality. He said that making marriage available to everyone "goes beyond individual relationships, proposals and weddings--it says something deeper too about the sort of country we are."

"This is a country with proud traditions of tolerance, respect and equal worth. With this reform we are being true to those values," he said.

"In turn," the Prime Minister added, "we are sending a powerful message to young people growing up who are uncertain about their sexuality: we are telling them that they are equal."

In a video recorded for PinkNews Labour Party leader Ed Miliband also congratulated the couples who will be marrying this weekend and said that the occasion is "an incredibly proud time for our country."

Below is a video issued by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

The video below, from The Telegraph, reports on the first same-sex wedding held in London shortly after midnight on March 29, 2014. The happy couple, Peter McGraith and David Cabreza, have been together for 17 years. Speaking before his wedding, McGraith said: "We are thrilled to be getting married. It is a mark of significant social progress in the UK that the legal distinction between gay and straight relationships has been removed." In the video activist Peter Tatchell, who worked tirelessly in support of the legislation, is briefly interviewed.

 
Related Encyclopedia Entries
 
browse:   arts   literature   social-sciences   discussion boards
 
learn more about glbtq       contact us       advertise on glbtq.com
 
Bookmark and Share

glbtq™ and its logo are trademarks of glbtq, Inc.
This site and its contents Copyright © 2002-2014, glbtq, Inc.

Your use of this site indicates that you accept its Terms of Service.