Argentina Approves Family Equality.

It’s been a long night waiting for confirmation, but Argentina has just become the latest country, and the fourth strongly Catholic country, to approve family equality, even in the face of vigorous, highly visible,  opposition by the Catholic  Church. (Note that I do not describe this as “gay marriage”. The legislation which has been approved includes much more than just provision for same -sex marriage.)

Rainbow Flag Outside the Argentinian Parliament!

What is particularly pleasing to me was that while the political argument in favour was based on human rights grounds, many of the supportive politicians made clear that their support was because of their Catholic faith, which emphasized the importance of respect for those human rights.

In their marathon debate, a number of senators in the 72-member upper house referred to their Catholic beliefs in presenting their reasons for opposing or supporting the bill.


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Lessons From Latin America

Coming as I do from South Africa where I was born and lived for over half a century, I am acutely aware of the White South African tendency to think, speak and write from within a White mental framework, even as they live and work in an overwhelmingly Black country. South Africa though is in some key respects a remarkable microcosm of the world as a whole, and this is one of them: when we in the blogosphere write, many of us do so with a clear mental bias to the USA and Europe, paying scant attention to the remarkable advances elsewhere, notably in Latin America.

Pride Parade, Brazil

How do we explain this paradox of rapid political gains in a region where open intolerance and clear homophobia remain entrenched? What can we learn? Writing in Americas Quarterly (and reprinted at Huffpost, where I came acr0ss it) Javier Corrales has some thoughts on the political processes, which I will get to. First, I want to reflect on the significance to us in the Churches, that he is referring here to Latin America, the home of liberation theology. Read the rest of this entry »