Same-sex families just won a huge victory in Portugal, and the country’s Left Bloc political party is celebrating with an in-your-face billboard featuring an illustration of a pro-gay Jesus.
The billboard is acknowledging a major political turning point for same-sex couples in Portugal: the right to adopt children, made official this month. Right-wingers are furious over the measure, which outgoing President Cavaco Silva signed into law on February 25.
The text reads “Jesus também tinha dois pais,” or “Jesus also had two fathers,” paying homage to families that are not comprised of a traditional mom-plus-dad configuration. It also reads “February 10, 2016: Parlamento termina discriminação na lei da adopção,” or “Parliament ends discrimination in the law of adoption.”
The Left Bloc party put up the billboard as part of a larger campaign to celebrate the country’s progress for LGBT people and invite others into the cause.
From a (Google-translated) Portugese article about the campaign:
The idea of the poster with the image of Jesus Christ is not meant to offend neither the Church nor religion, ensures Mrs BE Sandra Cunha. It just says, a way to “show people” that “there have always been different families” and that this is not a “new or recent” reality.
“The campaign marks this enormous achievement of ending discrimination in law against families and children because of the sexual orientation of people. It is a historic achievement of the Portuguese society. But we believe that, despite this achievement in law… this battle in society [continues]: change mentalities, destroy prejudice, to draw attention to these issues,” explains Sandra Cunha.
It’s also an impressive cultural marker in a country that is 81% Catholic, though Portugal has also embraced legal same-sex marriage since 2010. Advocates have been fighting to win same-sex adoption since then, and failed many times (including a presidential veto earlier this year). After such a long and well-fought battle, a bold celebration like this one is well-deserved.
(***Edit***: The referenced newspaper article was translated to say “Jesus has two parents,” but commenters are right that it makes more sense to say “Jesus has two dads.” The Portuguese word in question seems to translate to both. We’ve corrected this post to reflect that. Our apologies for the mistake!)