Same sex marriage legal in Canada


One of the most controversial government bills in a long time passed in Parliament tonight, legalizing same-sex marriage and ending discrimination against gay Canadians:

The bill will become official once it receives approval in the Senate, likely within days. With it the barriers to gay and lesbian weddings will tumble in Alberta, PEI, Nunavut and the Northwest Territories — the last jurisdictions where courts have not yet struck down the marriage law.

The legislation applies to civic weddings at public places, like city halls and courthouses. No religious groups will be forced to sanctify same-sex marriages if they don’t want to.

I’ve blogged extensively on this issue in the past, and I won’t rehash all the arguments I’ve already made on why I firmly believe in this issue. (If you’re interested, see here, here, here, here and here for some past posts on the subject).

Of course, the Conservatives have erased any hopes they might have had of being a viable alternative to the Liberals by marginalizing themselves as a single-issue party:

But Conservatives promise the debate isn’t over yet.

Leader Stephen Harper said he will bring back the same-sex marriage law for another vote if he wins the next election.

And with that, he’s pretty much guaranteed that he will never, ever win a Canadian election. Elections are won in the middle, not with promises to revoke a right once it’s been won.

This debate will rage on. And our American neighbours seem to be sadly heading in the opposite direction, so it may take them quite a while to get to this place.

But in my opinion, this is a great day in Canadian history. Just as we wonder what took so long for women or people of colour to be granted equal rights in the past, future generations will look back on this day.

Congratulations, Liberals. You finally took a stand on something. It took you long enough.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 half canadian 06.29.05 at 9:55 PM

Just interested, but what would Canadian voters actually have to say on the matter?
You know, the % that actually support this?


2 just a guy 06.30.05 at 10:38 AM

DaninVan : do u want to marry me?


3 just a guy 06.30.05 at 10:38 AM

damn the clock is wrong


4 half canadian 06.30.05 at 8:16 PM


Got any objective data on that?
The reason I ask is the basis for random sampling.


5 DaninVan 06.30.05 at 8:01 PM

Ahhhh…it’s so relaxing to pop in here (where I’m the reddest neck) after a stint with the folks at Damian’s. 🙂


6 DaninVan 06.30.05 at 8:09 PM

1/2 Canuck; out here in B.C. the Federal Libs. are widely detested BUT we have a pretty mellow lifestyle and most voters are very resentful of the Never-Ending-Circus that is the Conservative camp…they aren’t even an option. I thought about this earlier today and I personally don’t know a single person that will admit to supporting Harper on this. I want the old Progressive Conservatives back WITHOUT the ‘clowns’.


7 DaninVan 07.01.05 at 3:43 AM

Sorry, 1/2, it’s mostly anecdotal but I’ll see what I can find; did you have any specific info in mind? (sorry, the rhyme was unintentional).

Keep in mind that we just had a Provincial election here and the Municipal elections are coming up soon, interest in the Federal scene is sort of like S&M, eh?


8 John Palubiski 07.05.05 at 6:23 PM

Sari, I love the way your attemtp to establish an equivalence (“equivalence” being my word for the day) between REAL human rights issues and the fetish of a few hard-core gay activists.

The proof is in the pudding. When The South was desegregated Blacks rushed the the lunch-counters and to all places they had previously been denied access. They did so because their status as second-class citizens and the discrimination that went with it, was very real and very dehumanising.

So where’s the big rush to the alter?

Since gay marriage has become legal only about 3,000 individuals have availed themselves of this “right”, and of that number fully half were American.

Also, why was the alternative of civil unions not adequately discussed?

Harper should have gone on the offensive talked up the issue. Had he done so, he could have easily opened a breach in the debate, a breach that would have proposed (no pun intended) alternatives to the Canadian public; alternatives that would have been, in my opinion, very attractive to voters.


9 half canadian 07.05.05 at 10:41 PM

I’m with John here. The debate was ruled ‘unCanadian’. While I would have voted nay, had I had a vote, if I were in the minority, it would have been easier to accept. That’s why I support a referendum on the issue. Polarizing issues like this should be tabled on a referendum, if for no other reason than to give the results legitimacy. A non-free vote in Parliment just isn’t the same.


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