40-year-old gay rights activist Vincent Autinmet his 30-year-old partner Bruno Boileauin 2006 and tied the knot as France’s first same-sex couple amidst violent protests against gay marriages on May 29th 2013!
President François Hollande had warned he would not accept any disruption to the ceremony that was conducted by Socialist mayor, Helene Mandroux and the event was broadcast live on French TV.
The wedding had around 600 guests as well as 150 members of media.
Frigide Barjot, a leader of France’s anti-gay marriage movement, wished the couple on the land mark ceremony. But numerous others are not happy at all. Neither are they as giving or understanding as Ms. Barjot.
The reform allowing them to marry has stirred up some of the ugliest protests in the country in decades.
The law makes France the 14th country to allow same-sex marriage despite heated street protests by conservatives, Catholics and extreme-right groups.
“Marriage for all” was one of François Hollande’s campaign promises. Thanks to the left’s strong majority in parliament the law passed by a solid margin.
Generally despite its Catholic roots, France is laid back about family affairs. Mr Hollande himself is not married to Valérie Trierweiler, his girlfriend.
Not much was made of the legalization of abortion back in 1975 or the free availability of contraceptive pill to all 15- to 18-year-olds, the issue of gay marriage however, seem to stir up a lot of people.
A reason for the flare up behind the anti gay protests could be the fact that the political right has swung behind the movement. They are fueling not only these protests but also causing those in opposition of Hollande to get mobilized in the process. The likes of Jean-François Copé, and Henri Guaino, Nicolas Sarkozy’s former presidential adviser joined some of the rallies as well.
Whatever the case may be, the gays in France have finally the right to tie the knot and at least the current government supports them to the hilt!