Austrian court legalizes same-sex ‘marriage’
AUSTRIA, December 6, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – An Austrian court has ruled that gays and lesbians can “marry” each other, beginning in 2019.
Same-sex couples have been able to register their partnerships with the Austrian government since 2010. But according to the court, these “legal partnerships” are basically indistinguishable from marriage, so denying same-sex “marriage” would be discriminatory.
Two women who wanted to “marry” brought the case to the court with the help of a lawyer named Helmut Graupner.
“[T]he distinction between marriage and registered partnership can not be maintained today without discriminating against same-sex couples,” said the court. “Because the separation into two legal institutions implies that people with same sex sexual orientation are not equal to people with different gender orientation.”
The court also cited the fact that same-sex couples are already “allowed to adopt children (jointly) and make equal use of the permitted forms of medically assisted reproduction.”
The Austrian Constitutional Court’s decision has been met with criticism.
“Now there is equal treatment for something that’s not equal,” said Herbert Kickl, the secretary general of Austria’s Freedom Party.
The Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP) also opposes same-sex “marriage.”
These two pro-marriage parties are “negotiating to form a new government after Austria's October election,” the Associated Press reported.
It’s unclear how aggressively their government will oppose the ruling.
Last month, in anticipation of the ruling, Austria’s Catholic Bishops’ Conference released a statement saying marriage “should be reserved exclusively for couples of different sexes,” because of the unique nature of complementary relationships compared “to other forms of coexistence.”
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