In January 2015 the Supreme Court agreed to review a November 2014 decision of the Court of Appeals of the Sixth Circuit that had upheld state laws and constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage or the recognition of same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions. In June, in Obergefell v. Hodges, the court reversed both of the Sixth Circuit’s holdings, thereby legalizing same-sex marriage in all 50 states.


The Illinois Family Institute states that if gay marriage is legalized, "Children will be taught that homosexuality is morally equivalent to heterosexuality... that children do not have any inherent rights to know and be raised by a mother and a father... [and] that opposition to the legalization of 'same-sex marriage' was equivalent to opposition to the legalization of interracial marriage. They will be taught that opposition to both was motivated by ignorance and hatred." [85] Lou Sheldon, Founder of the Traditional Values Coalition, warned of the influence on children of the "homosexual agenda," writing that "[o]ur little children are being targeted by the homosexuals and liberals... To be brainwashed to think that homosexuality is the moral equivalent of heterosexuality. We can't let that happen." [150]
Of the fourteen British Overseas Territories, same-sex marriage has been legal in South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands since 2014, Akrotiri and Dhekelia and the British Indian Ocean Territory (for UK military personnel) since 3 June 2014, the Pitcairn Islands since 14 May 2015, the British Antarctic Territory since 13 October 2016, Gibraltar[355] since 15 December 2016, Ascension Island since 1 January 2017, the Falkland Islands since 29 April 2017, Tristan da Cunha since 4 August 2017, and Saint Helena since 20 December 2017. In February 2018, Bermuda passed the Domestic Partnership Act 2018, revoking same-sex marriage, which had been legalised by a May 2017 Supreme Court ruling.[356][357] In June 2018, the Bermuda Supreme Court struck down the parts of the law revoking same-sex marriage, but stay the rule to allow to Government to consider an appeal. On 23 November 2018, the court upheld the Supreme Court's ruling, by which same-sex marriage became again legal in Bermuda.
^ "Making colleges and universities safe for gay and lesbian students: Report and recommendations of the Governor's Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth" (PDF). Massachusetts. Governor's Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth., page 20. "A relatively recent tactic used in the backlash opposing les/bi/gay/trans campus visibility is the so-called "heterosexual pride" strategy".

As noted above, many societies traditionally chose to ignore the issue of same-sex marriage by treating same-sex intimacy as a subject unsuitable for discussion. Many of these jurisdictions, as well as those that actively criminalize same-sex unions, contended that homosexuality and lesbianism are mental disorders and built their public policies on this premise. In treating same-sex desire as a psychiatric illness, these cultures moved same-sex intimacy and marriage from the realm of civil regulations (the domain of contract law) to that of public safety (the domain of criminal law). In such societies, the possibility of arrest or institutionalization further reinforced taboos on same-sex intimacy and discussions thereof, typically driving such activities underground.
Michelle Bachelet, the President of Chile, who was elected to a second term in March 2014, promised to work for the implementation of same-sex marriage and had a majority in both houses of Congress. Previously, she said, "Marriage equality, I believe we have to make it happen."[369] Polling shows majority support for same-sex marriage among Chileans.[370] A poll carried out in September 2015 by the pollster Cadem Plaza Pública found that 60% of Chileans supported same-sex marriage, whilst 36% were against it.[371]
One effort to quantify the population gave a "rough estimate" that 0.3 percent of adults in the US are transgender.[130][131] More recent studies released in 2016 estimate the proportion of Americans who identify as transgender at 0.5 to 0.6%. This would put the total number of transgender Americans at approximately 1.4 million adults (as of 2016).[132][133][134][135]
Problems still remain surrounding misinformation about transgender issues that hurt transgender people's mental health experiences. One trans man who was enrolled as a student in a psychology graduate program highlighted the main concerns with modern clinical training: "Most people probably are familiar with the term transgender, but maybe that's it. I don’t think I've had any formal training just going through [clinical] programs . . . I don’t think most [therapists] know. Most therapists—Master's degree, PhD level—they've had . . . one diversity class on GLBT issues. One class out of the huge diversity training. One class. And it was probably mostly about gay lifestyle."[83] Many health insurance policies do not cover treatment associated with gender transition, and numerous people are under- or uninsured, which raises concerns about the insufficient training most therapists receive prior to working with transgender clients, potentially increasing financial strain on clients without providing the treatment they need.[83] Many clinicians who work with transgender clients only receive mediocre training on gender identity, but introductory training on interacting with transgender people has recently been made available to health care professionals to help remove barriers and increase the level of service for the transgender population.[86]
A term used to describe some people whose gender expression is different from conventional expectations of masculinity and femininity. Please note that not all gender non-conforming people identify as transgender; nor are all transgender people gender non-conforming. Many people have gender expressions that are not entirely conventional – that fact alone does not make them transgender. Many transgender men and women have gender expressions that are conventionally masculine or feminine. Simply being transgender does not make someone gender non-conforming. The term is not a synonym for transgender or transsexual and should only be used if someone self-identifies as gender non-conforming.
Research findings from 1998–2015 from the University of Virginia, Michigan State University, Florida State University, the University of Amsterdam, the New York State Psychiatric Institute, Stanford University, the University of California-San Francisco, the University of California-Los Angeles, Tufts University, Boston Medical Center, the Committee on Psychosocial Aspects of Child and Family Health, and independent researchers also support the findings of this study.[37]
The existence of religious pluralities within a country seems to have had a less determinate effect on the outcome of same-sex marriage debates. In some such countries, including the United States, consensus on this issue was difficult to reach. On the other hand, the Netherlands—the first country to grant equal marriage rights to same-sex couples (2001)—was religiously diverse, as was Canada, which did so in 2005.
Perhaps because systems of religion and systems of civil authority often reflect and support each other, the countries that had reached consensus on the issue by the early 2000s tended to have a single dominant religious affiliation across the population; many such places had a single, state-sponsored religion. This was the case in both Iran, where a strong Muslim theocracy had criminalized same-sex intimacy, and Denmark, where the findings of a conference of Evangelical Lutheran bishops (representing the state religion) had helped smooth the way for the first national recognition of same-sex relationships through registered partnerships. In other cases, the cultural homogeneity supported by the dominant religion did not result in the application of doctrine to the civic realm but may nonetheless have fostered a smoother series of discussions among the citizenry: Belgium and Spain had legalized same-sex marriage, for instance, despite official opposition from their predominant religious institution, the Roman Catholic Church.
Evolutionary psychologists have argued that same-sex attraction does not have adaptive value because it has no association with potential reproductive success. Instead, bisexuality can be due to normal variation in brain plasticity. More recently, it has been suggested that same-sex alliances may have helped males climb the social hierarchy giving access to females and reproductive opportunities. Same-sex allies could have helped females to move to the safer and resource richer center of the group, which increased their chances of raising their offspring successfully.[28]
Gay marriage is contrary to the word of God and is incompatible with the beliefs, sacred texts, and traditions of many religious groups. The Bible, in Leviticus 18:22, states: "Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination," thus condemning homosexual relationships. [120] In Islamic tradition, several hadiths (passages attributed to the Prophet Muhammad) condemn gay and lesbian relationships, including the sayings "When a man mounts another man, the throne of God shakes," and "Sihaq [lesbian sex] of women is zina [illegitimate sexual intercourse]." [121] The Catholic Church, United Methodist Church, Southern Baptist Convention, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, National Association of Evangelicals, and American Baptist Churches USA all oppose same-sex marriage. [119] Two orthodox Jewish groups, the Orthodox Agudath Israel of America and the Orthodox Union, also oppose gay marriage, as does mainstream Islam. [13] [119] According to a July 31, 2003 statement from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and approved by Pope John Paul II, marriage "was established by the Creator with its own nature, essential properties and purpose. No ideology can erase from the human spirit the certainty that marriage exists solely between a man and a woman…" [54] Pope Benedict stated in Jan. 2012 that gay marriage threatened "the future of humanity itself." [145]
The introduction of same-sex marriage (also called marriage equality) has varied by jurisdiction, and came about through legislative change to marriage law, court rulings based on constitutional guarantees of equality, recognition that it is allowed by existing marriage law,[3] or by direct popular vote (via referendums and initiatives). The recognition of same-sex marriage is considered to be a human right and a civil right as well as a political, social, and religious issue.[4] The most prominent supporters of same-sex marriage are human rights and civil rights organizations as well as the medical and scientific communities, while the most prominent opponents are religious fundamentalist groups. Polls consistently show continually rising support for the recognition of same-sex marriage in all developed democracies and in some developing democracies.

Legalizing gay marriage advances the "homosexual agenda" and unfairly paints opponents as bigots. The Illinois Family Institute states that if gay marriage is legalized, "Children will be taught that homosexuality is morally equivalent to heterosexuality... that children do not have any inherent rights to know and be raised by a mother and a father... [and] that opposition to the legalization of 'same-sex marriage' was equivalent to opposition to the legalization of interracial marriage. They will be taught that opposition to both was motivated by ignorance and hatred." [85] Lou Sheldon, Founder of the Traditional Values Coalition, warned of the influence on children of the "homosexual agenda," writing that "[o]ur little children are being targeted by the homosexuals and liberals... To be brainwashed to think that homosexuality is the moral equivalent of heterosexuality. We can't let that happen." [150]
In August 2011, Sao Paulo city alderman Carlos Apolinário of the right-wing Democrats Party sponsored a bill to organize and sponsor "Heterosexual Pride Day" on the third Sunday of December. Apolinário, an Evangelical Protestant, stated that the intent of the parade was a "struggle ... against excesses and privileges". Members of Grupo Gay da Bahia and the Workers' Party opposed the bill as enhancing "the possibility of discrimination and prejudice".[46] The bill was nevertheless passed by the city council, but never received the signature of mayor Gilberto Kassab.
^ Heng, R. (2005) "...Even if we take Bugis Street as a starting point, we should remember that cross-dressing did not emerge suddenly out of nowhere. Across Asia, there is a tradition of cross-dressing and other forms of transgender behaviour in many places with a rich local lexicon and rituals associated with them...." in Where queens ruled! - a history of gay venues in Singapore Archived 2007-10-11 at the Wayback Machine from IndigNation. Retrieved 2007-07-22.

^ Jump up to: a b World Health Organisation (1992) "...Fetishistic transvestism is distinguished from transsexual transvestism by its clear association with sexual arousal and the strong desire to remove the clothing once orgasm occurs and sexual arousal declines...." in ICD-10, Gender Identity Disorder, category F65.1 Archived 2009-04-22 at the Wayback Machine published by the World Health Organisation Archived 2016-07-05 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 2007-08-13.

Gene Robinson, openly gay former Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire, stated in Sep. 2012: "Scripture says where love is, there is God also. And they [religious people] see that love in our families, and I think people can't help but be supportive." [128] Lee Jefferson, Assistant Professor of Religion at Centre College, wrote that the Bible makes no mention of same-sex marriage at all, nor does it make reference to sexual orientation as it is understood today. [129] Reform Judaism, which comprises about 80% of the American Jewish population, endorses same-sex marriage, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis has supported gay marriage since 1996. [130] The Episcopal Church stated in Resolution A095, made in 2006, that it "oppose[s] any state or federal constitutional amendment that prohibits same-sex civil marriage or civil unions." The Presbyterian Church (USA) voted in June 2014 to allow its pastors to marry same-sex couples. The United Church of Christ General Synod voted in July 2005 to affirm "equal marriage rights for couples regardless of gender." The 1996 General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association adopted "a position in support of legal recognition for marriage between members of the same sex." [119] [141][142] [143]


Featuring the symbol for the infinite numberpi, which shares the first letter of "polyamory," this flag celebrates the infinite selection of partners available to polyamorous people. The letter is gold to represent the emotional attachment we have with others as friends and romantic partnerss, rather than just our carnal relationships. Find out more here.
Civil union, civil partnership, domestic partnership, registered partnership, unregistered partnership, and unregistered cohabitation statuses offer varying legal benefits of marriage. As of December 2017, countries that have an alternative form of legal recognition other than marriage on a national level are: Andorra, Chile, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Ecuador, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Liechtenstein, San Marino, Slovenia and Switzerland.[489][490] Poland and Slovakia offer more limited rights. On a subnational level, the Mexican state of Tlaxcala, the Dutch constituent country of Aruba and Northern Ireland in the United Kingdom allow same-sex couples to access civil unions or partnerships, but restrict marriage to couples of the opposite sex. Additionally, various cities and counties in Cambodia, Japan and Taiwan offer same-sex couples varying levels of benefits, which include hospital visitation rights and others.
^ Jump up to: a b Bilodeau, Brent (2005). "Beyond the Gender Binary: A Case Study of Two Transgender Students at a Midwestern Research University". Journal of Gay & Lesbian Issues in Education. 3 (1): 29–44. doi:10.1300/J367v03n01_05. "Yet Jordan and Nick represent a segment of transgender communities that have largely been overlooked in transgender and student development research – individuals who express a non-binary construction of gender[.]"
A study of nationwide data from across the United States from January 1999 to December 2015 revealed that the establishment of same-sex marriage is associated with a significant reduction in the rate of attempted suicide among children, with the effect being concentrated among children of a minority sexual orientation, resulting in about 134,000 fewer children attempting suicide each year in the United States.

Magnus Hirschfeld argued that adult sexual orientation can be explained in terms of the bisexual nature of the developing fetus: he believed that in every embryo there is one rudimentary neutral center for attraction to males and another for attraction to females. In most fetuses, the center for attraction to the opposite sex developed while the center for attraction to the same sex regressed, but in fetuses that became homosexual, the reverse occurred. Simon LeVay has criticized Hirschfeld's theory of an early bisexual stage of development, calling it confusing; LeVay maintains that Hirschfeld failed to distinguish between saying that the brain is sexually undifferentiated at an early stage of development and saying that an individual actually experiences sexual attraction to both men and women. According to LeVay, Hirschfeld believed that in most bisexual people the strength of attraction to the same sex was relatively low, and that it was therefore possible to restrain its development in young people, something Hirschfeld supported.[47]
On 28 November 2011, the first two same-sex marriages occurred in Quintana Roo after it was discovered that Quintana Roo's Civil Code did not explicitly prohibit same-sex marriage,[279] but these marriages were later annulled by the Governor of Quintana Roo in April 2012.[280] In May 2012, the Secretary of State of Quintana Roo reversed the annulments and allowed for future same-sex marriages to be performed in the state.[281]
This debate recently flared up around the publication of an article by Rieger, Chivers, and Bailey that compared the genital and self-reported sexual arousal patterns of men who identified as heterosexual, bisexual, and gay. Men came into a private room in a lab and were shown several films that either included two men having sex with each other or two women having sex with each other. Genital arousal patterns were measured using a gauge that measures changes in the circumference of the penis as it becomes erect. This is also called a penile plethysmograph (shown at left). Participants also self-reported their sexual arousal by moving a lever backwards and forwards to show increasing or decreasing arousal.
In January 2019 the Hong Kong High Court agreed to hear two challenges to the city's refusal to recognise same-sex marriage. The two separate legal challenges were mounted by a 21-year-old University of Hong Kong student, known as TF, and a 31-year-old activist, known as STK, who argued that the inability of same-sex couples to get married violated their right to equality under the city’s Bill of Rights and the Basic Law.[27] The judge in the case gave the applications license to be heard by the court, though suspended them to first hear another case involving a 29 year old lesbian, who is seeking for a civil union partnership system to be implemented in Hong Kong.[27]

There is no complete data on the number of same-sex marriages conducted in the United States. Marriages and divorces are recorded by states, counties, and territories, plus New York City and the District of Columbia, but not by the federal government. States such as Oregon do not distinguish between opposite-sex and same-sex marriages in their official records. The legal records on marriage and divorce belong to the states.[155] In August 2016, the Treasury Department estimated the number of same-sex marriages by linking the tax returns of same-sex couples who had filed jointly in 2014 with their Social Security records. (Although this method excluded couples who file singly, these are small in number; of all married couples who file taxes, 97.5% file jointly.) This research showed that in 2014 there were about 183,280 married same-sex couples in the country, or "roughly a third of 1 percent of all marriages" according to the New York Times.[156]
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