As we await the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on the constitutionality of same-sex marriage bans, the Mexican Supreme Court just declared such bans to be unconstitutional in that country. Perhaps a foreshadowing of the outcome in Obergefell v. Hodges?
Mr. Gonzalez and dozens of other gay couples in recent months have, however, found a powerful ally: Mexico’s Supreme Court.
In ruling after ruling, the court has said that state laws restricting marriage to heterosexuals are discriminatory. Though the decisions have been made to little public fanfare, they have had the effect of legalizing gay marriage in Mexico without enshrining it in law.
“When I heard the judge pronounce us legally married, I burst into tears,” said Mr. Gonzalez, 41. Like nearly all same-sex couples marrying in Mexico, he and his partner needed a court order in order to exchange vows.
As the United States awaits a landmark decision on gay marriage by the Supreme Court, the Mexican court’s rulings have added the country to a slowly growing list of Latin American nations permitting same-sex unions.
Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil already allow same-sex marriage. Chile plans to recognize same-sex civil unions this year; Ecuador approved civil unions in April; and Colombia grants same-sex couples many of the same rights extended to heterosexual married couples.
“It’s a huge change from where things were 10 years ago,” said Jason Pierceson, a professor at the University of Illinois at Springfield who studies gay marriage trends in Latin America.<
And these are all strongly Catholic countries. Equality is winning.