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Popular Topics in Social Sciences
Africa: Sub-Saharan, Pre-Independence
With reports from hundreds of sub-Saharan African locales of male-male sexual relations and from about fifty of female-female sexual relations, it is clear that same-sex sexual relations existed in traditional African societies, though varying in forms and in the degree of public acceptance
 
Stonewall Riots Stonewall Riots
The confrontations between police and demonstrators at the Stonewall Inn in New York City the weekend of June 27-29, 1969 mark the beginning of the modern glbtq movement for equal rights.
 
Native Americans
A social role for individuals who crossed or mixed male and female characteristics was one of the most widely distributed institutions of native North America.
 
The Sexual Revolution, 1960-1980 The Sexual Revolution, 1960-1980
The sexual revolution of post-World War II America changed sexual and gender roles profoundly.
 
Mixed-Orientation Marriages
Mixed-orientation marriages--those in which one partner is straight and the other is gay or lesbian--often end in divorce, but such an ending is not inevitable.
 
Leather Culture
"Leather" is a blanket term for a large array of sexual preferences, identities, relationship structures, and social organizations loosely tied together by the thread of what is conventionally understood as sadomasochistic sex.
 
Transgender Activism
Since the late nineteenth century, transgendered people have advocated legal and social reforms that would ameliorate the kinds of oppression and discrimination they suffer.
 
Gay Liberation Front
Formed soon after the Stonewall Riots of 1969, the short-lived but influential Gay Liberation Front brought a new militancy to the movement that became known as gay liberation.
 
Topics In the News
 
New Zealand Prime Minister Endorses Marriage Equality
Posted by: Claude J. Summers on 07/30/12
Last updated on: 07/30/12
 
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In an interview with RadioLive NZ, Prime Minister John Key said that he will vote in favor of a private members bill allowing same-sex couples to wed. He said that he will allow a conscience vote on the measure, which would permit members of his center-right government to make independent decisions as to how they vote on the bill.

According to the Australian website newscom.au, the Prime Minister said, "My view has been that if two gay people want to get married then I can't see why it would undermine my marriage."

He acknowledged, however, that "There will be plenty of people in our caucus who will be deeply opposed--particularly the very religious ones, and I can understand that."

New Zealand currently offers offers same-sex couples civil unions that provide the same legal rights and responsibilities as marriage. Key, who voted against the civil unions bill in 2004, said in 2008 that he saw no need to go beyond civil unions.

However, in response to the announcment of President Obama's endorsement of same-sex marriage, and perhaps more importantly to polls that indicate that more than 60% of New Zealanders support same-sex marriage, Key announced on May 11, 2012, that he "was not opposed to same-sex marriage."

The bill that will be debated in New Zealand's Parliament was introduced by Labour MP Louisa Wall. It is believed that all 14 Green MPs and most of the 34 Labour MPs will vote in favor of marriage equality. The 3 Maori Party MPs are also expected to support marriage equality. Key's National Party has 59 seats in the 121-member assembly, with the remainder divided between 5 minor parties. It is expected that on a conscience vote some National Party MPs will follow the Prime Minister's lead. The question is whether that will be sufficient to reach the 61 votes needed for passage.

The video below, from Wellington's One News TV, reports on the marriage equality bill. The report was made on July 26, 2012, before Prime Minister Key's announcement of his support.

 
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