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French Mayor Defies Law, Marries Gay Couple

French Mayor Defies Law, Marries Gay Couple

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The mayor of the small French town of Cabestany officiated at the marriage of two men Saturday, in defiance of national law, which allows only civil unions, not marriage, for gay couples.

Mayor Jean Vila said performing the wedding for the men, identified only as Patrick and Guillaume, was a "militant act," Reuters reports.

"To outlaw homosexual marriage is to deny the reality of thousands of homosexual couples," he said after the ceremony, held in the Cabestany City Hall. "This decision to join these two people for me is an act of anger and revolt in the face of the authorities' refusal to legitimize such unions." He did not enter the marriage in the official registry, however, to avoid the possibility of annulment.

Reuters notes, "France's constitutional authority in January upheld the country's ban on gay weddings and in June parliament rejected an opposition Socialist Party bill attempting to legalize them."

Claude Greff, President Nicolas Sarkozy's junior cabinet minister for family, called the wedding a "provocation on the eve of the presidential election." Sarkozy is up for reelection next year, but Socialist challenger Francois Hollande leads him in polls.

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Trudy Ring

Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.
Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.