Pro-Marriage Protests Erupt in France

Over at Ricochet I reflect on what preservationists in American can learn from the recent massive demonstrations in Paris for marriage:

Hundreds of thousands gathered in a massive demonstration in Paris last weekend to protest President Francois Hollande’s plan to legalize so-called gay marriage and adoption by gay couples. The diverse coalition included Catholic, Muslim, and Evangelical leaders and laity, secular conservatives and gay people. There was also a rousing performance by French comedian Frigide Barjot. (Get it?)

Many, myself included, were delighted by reports of the event and accompanying photos of the Champ de Mars packed with French citizens waving pink and baby blue signs reading “1 Pere + 1 Mere C’est Elementaire” and “La Manif pour Tous.” (“The Demonstration for All.”) This is France, after all, land of Voltaire, Bohemianism, and Jacques Derrida. France, of the 35-hour work week, subsidized child care, and the aforementioned Socialist President Hollande. Yet, this!

Also fascinating is the rather benign response to the protest from gay marriage advocates in France. Reports state that protestors traveled to and from the site and handed out literature without the sort of red-faced shouting matches one might expect at a similar event in the United States and elsewhere.

What explains such unusual circumstances? What can marriage preservationists in the States learn from these events?

Read the full piece here.


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