Romania’s $40 million anti-gay referendum was a complete flop

Romania’s $40 million anti-gay referendum was a complete flop October 8, 2018

Just over 20 percent of Romanians bothered to turn out for a referendum held over two days at the weekend to change the constitution to define marriage as strictly between a man and a woman.

The low turn-out comes as a bitter disappointment to right-wing religious groups who demanded the $40 million referendum to prevent gay marriage from ever taking place in the country.

Ahead of the vote one newspaper stooped as low as to compare homosexuals with Nazis.

Religiously conservative Romania, which decriminalised homosexuality in 2001 decades after neighbouring countries, bars marriage and civil partnerships for same sex couples.

A group called Coalition for the Family secured three million signatures to trigger the vote aimed at preventing gay couples winning the right to marry in the future.

The Coalition received backing from the Orthodox Church and other religions as well as all but one of Romania’s parliamentary parties.

Said Vlad Viski of LGBT rights group MozaiQ.

Romanians rejected being divided and hating each other, it is a victory for Romanian democracy and moreover, Romanians rejected the involvement of the Orthodox Church in the state’s secular affairs.

We believe politicians must now legalise civil partnerships for same sex couples.

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  • Eric Jameson
  • Götterdämmerung

    Bob – no mates – Hutton, haven’t seen him trolling over here for a while, I think he was banned.

  • kaydenpat

    Great news. Another step forward for human rights.

  • Anri

    That would be sad if it wasn’t so funny.
    And funny if it wasn’t so sad.

  • Raging Bee

    Maybe bubhutton2 will be more convincing…

  • E.A. Blair

    In Romania, persecution of gays will continue, but, at least, without overt government approval.

  • Wile F. Coyote

    Only a low-twenty percent turnout; 30% is the minimum requirement to enact a law. The low turnout probably says more about current dissatisfaction with the sitting government by the Romanian electorate than it does about societal approval/disapproval of legalized homosexual marriage.

  • Jim Jones

    I hope he keeps up the good work. ‘Christians’ like him are driving people away from religion by the thousands.

  • barriejohn

    And the last time I looked, he hadn’t had a single comment on his blog for over a year. Long may it remain that way!

  • Agent Cormac

    Speaking of no comments, barriejohn, I don’t know about you but I am completely flummoxed by this new and totally unexpected iteration of the Freethinker. And I can totally understand why every other regular contributor, bar yourself, seems to have vanished overnight. While I fully appreciate that Barry Duke does an incredible job as editor and has to call the shots regarding financial sustainability, it honestly feels to me like we’ve lost our sense of independence and community overnight. In fact, I’d go as far as saying I simply can’t stomach this horribly cluttered patheos site, which kind of relegates the FT to just one of loads of competing blogs. Had I been asked, I would have willingly chipped in to help with upkeep costs to help keep the Freethinker independent. But there you go. Too late now, I guess. I’m not sure if you’ll be alerted to this reply, but if you are and we do all drift apart as a result of this move, I’d just like to say good luck to you. I’ve enjoyed your company and your input for many years. AC.

  • barriejohn

    I’m in mourning. It’s like losing an old friend.

    (PS Thanks for the complimentary remarks!)

  • Agent Cormac

    I know exactly how you feel. It’s actually like losing a whole bunch of friends simultaneously.

  • barriejohn

    Some may be posting under different names. Is Broga still around?

  • Agent Cormac

    I keep dropping in to check, but so far I haven’t seen anything else from any of the other regulars.

  • Stephen Mynett

    Agree with you both. Not fond of Disqus either. I can understand the reasoning for the move but it is a pity there was not some form of consultation as I am sure AC was not the only one who would have chipped in to save the old site, although Barry Duke did explain things and it may have been the ongoing expenses would be just too much to keep the old Freethinker going.

    I hope we have not lost Broga and the others, although I am not sure I really want to stay around here, much will depend on who posts and the quality of the posting, one worry of a move here is that it will open things up for a new bunch of trolls.

  • Agent Cormac

    I know what you mean, Stephen. The old FT had been part of my daily life for years and it would be a shame if many of the regulars on there like Broga simply vanish. At the moment I can understand why they’ve gone silent as I just don’t feel any empathy with the new setup. It’s very sad, really. Hopefully people will resurface once we’ve all got used to the change.

  • barriejohn

    I’ve noticed a few comments already obviously intended to wind us up, but I’m not taking the bait!

  • Teri Calim

    Indeed, the referendum was a waste of money and time, and this was taxpayers’ money.

    I was curious to find out how to say Hello in Romanian, here it is: