Talk:Same-sex marriage

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Former featured articleSame-sex marriage is a former featured article. Please see the links under Article milestones below for its original nomination page (for older articles, check the nomination archive) and why it was removed.
Article milestones
June 24, 2003Featured article candidatePromoted
March 1, 2004Featured article reviewDemoted
November 21, 2010Good article nomineeNot listed
Current status: Former featured article

10,000 BCE[edit]

I removed the following from the lead-

Recorded same-sex unions around the world date back at least to 10,000 BCE.

There are a few problems with it. (1) it does not summarize the body of the text, as the lead is supposed to. (2) it failed verification (though with no page numbers, it's hard to be sure). (3) at least one of the refs is not a RS. (4) it is inherently dubious -- how can SS "unions" (whatever that means) be "recorded" millennia before there were records? I subbed with the number of countries where SSM is available, which IMO should be stated up front, as it's the kind of factoid that people are likely to be looking for, and it ties in to the list of countries in the following para. I'm not opposed to a statement of the earliest attested SSM in the lead, as long as it follows the body of the text and is well sourced. (E.g., currently we note Biblical accounts of Egypt, meaning our dating in the lead was off by about 10,000 years.)

Also, the Bible does not mention SSM. According to our source, it's the Sifra that interprets the verse as referring to SSM. It may be that SSM was practiced in Egypt at the time, which was the 3nd century CE, rather than during the time Leviticus was written. I don't know how we'd know. — kwami (talk) 01:22, 19 June 2019 (UTC)

I changed it to,

There are records of same-sex marriage dating back to the first century, and it was banned in the Roman Empire in the fourth. Today, same-sex marriage is available in 28 countries.

This matches the text: Nero is 1st century. I mentioned the ban because our sources debate whether Nero's SSM was really a "marriage". The fact that SSM was banned in the 4th century indicates that there was something to ban. The Sifra interprets Leviticus as intending SSM, but Leviticus is not a source for SSM, so that record only goes back to the 3rd century. — kwami (talk) 02:00, 19 June 2019 (UTC)


  • diff it's used so editors don't have to update the date when the next country legalizes marriage equality

The IP involved in the mini edit war has a point: it's misleading to have {{date}} in an article (which is why the template includes This template should only be used internally in other templates). There may be no edits for a month, and the article (when purged) would display "As of 20 July 2019 ...". That will be misleading because there is no assurance that an editor has checked that no relevant legislative changes have occurred. I take the point about it being irritating to change the date after editing, and that is why the date should be omitted. Just assert the fact: "Same-sex marriage is legally performed and recognized...". Johnuniq (talk) 10:39, 20 June 2019 (UTC)

I agree. It should be the date of the last legislative change. Otherwise the date is redundant and may as well say "currently..." or "today...". Consider examples below:
  • As of 29 March 2014, same sex marriage is legal in England and Wales.
  • As of 17 July 2019, same sex marriage is legal in England and Wales. (uses {{date}} template)
Both are correct, but the first is much more informative as it tells you when the current set of circumstances started. The last legislative change at the county level globally was Ecuador, so it should say 12 June 2019 and be updated as and when. It's a popular page, so it will be done by someone pretty quickly. DelUsion23 (talk) 11:39, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
Was about to come here on the same issue. Of the two examples you list, the first is poorly worded; "Since 29 March 2014, same-sex marriage has been" would be preferable, as it establishes that as a start date and not just a checking date, and suggests the likelihood that it has changed since then. But "as of" with today's date makes a definitive statement that the list has been kept up-to-date, and while that will tend to be true (this is a very well-tended article), it is not definitively true. For places with a long list of jurisdictions without a unified start date, we are better off just leaving all dates off. --Nat Gertler (talk) 13:40, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
Users will have to update the list itself anyway by adding the new country or jurisdiction that legalized same-sex marriage, so updating the date isn’t that much of an issue in this case. There’s absolutely no point in having today’s date be there as it serves no informative purpose. -- (talk) 14:37, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
The date should be manually updated to reflect verifiable sources. Using the date template is effectively the same as writing "as of now", and is wrong. William Avery (talk) 14:41, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
I like the suggestion of omitting the date entirely. It is clear and avoids confusion about dates. For example, someone might read the phrase "As of 2018, SSM is legal in X". This could mean that the legal status changed in 2018, that it was most recently verified in 2018, or that the article has not been updated since 2018. For that reason, I think omitting a date might make the meaning more clear.Michelangelo1992 (talk) 15:51, 20 June 2019 (UTC)
Yeah, omitting the date would be a good solution. Ron 1987 (talk) 18:40, 20 June 2019 (UTC)

Another problem I've thought of with the {{date}} template is that it even shows today's date in article history. DelUsion23 (talk) 17:42, 20 June 2019 (UTC)

Should we remove Japan, Cambodia and Armenia from the map?[edit]

In Japan and Cambodia, the certificates are voluntary and have no legal force. In Armenia there is no demonstrated right to marriage -- we've had other cases where a court has ruled and been sidestepped in practice. Currently all three are striped, so as to not claim they're equivalent to the solidly colored states. But we've had objections to including Japan at all (by user:Paullb), under the argument that the certificates there confer no mandatory rights and can be ignored at will. — kwami (talk) 20:08, 2 July 2019 (UTC)

@Ron 1987:, @Jedi Friend:, @AdamPrideTN:, trying to get a discussion going on Commons. Is it worth including these three countries? Are they similar enough to be treated the same way, whichever we decide is best? Personally, I like including them because it shows some progress, however slight, in parts of the world with relatively little. However, Paul's correct that we don't want to mislead readers as to the extent of that progress. Organizations and local govts are free to ignore the certificates in Japan and (I believe) in Cambodia, and it's yet to be demonstrated that the court order in Armenia actually means something on the ground. Yet all three give hope to the people involved and establish some precedent. — kwami (talk) 21:35, 4 July 2019 (UTC)

I agree with you concerning the idea of keeping them included to show the on-going progress. Furthermore, there's an article taken from ( saying there is a possible law concerning a same-sex marriage bill in Japan. It also refers to Article 24 of the Japanese Constitution, already mentioned in the article. Should this information be added?--HRwatcher (talk) 09:06, 8 July 2019 (UTC)

I think we have it in the Japan article. BTW, Paullb seems content with the current solution of striping Japan and clearly stating in the legend that there are no actual legal rights there. — kwami (talk) 05:01, 9 July 2019 (UTC)

Estonian court confirms lack of marriage rights[edit]

Story here. — kwami (talk) 04:13, 8 July 2019 (UTC)

Northern Ireland[edit]

Don't want to get sucked into an edit war, so starting a discussion to make sure I'm not mistaken. The amendment passed in Westminster today says that the UK gov should legislate for SSM if the Northern Ireland Assembly isn't restored from deadlock before 21 October 2019. I don't believe this makes it legal on 21 Oct, only that the gov needs to start the process. Any thoughts? BBC article. DelUsion23 (talk) 18:30, 9 July 2019 (UTC)

It passed the House of Commons. It is not law yet, as the House of Lords also needs to pass it and then the Queen (or her representative) needs to sign it into law. We are jumping the gun here.--Darryl Kerrigan (talk) 18:36, 9 July 2019 (UTC):
Today, the bill had Committee of the Whole House stage, still awaits for final, third reading in the chamber. The amendment obligates the government to issue regulations, which must be in force no later than 21 October, if the Northern Ireland Executive is not formed by that date. See [1]. Ron 1987 (talk) 20:56, 9 July 2019 (UTC)
If this means it has only reached second reading, then it is even earlier in the legislative process than we thought, and certainly not a law yet (ie not binding on anyone).[2][3] We seem to have jumped the gun.--Darryl Kerrigan (talk) 21:17, 9 July 2019 (UTC)

Third reading in the House of Lords is set for 17 July, assuming it passes second reading this afternoon.[4] DelUsion23 (talk) 17:01, 10 July 2019 (UTC)

Thanks. I can't tell from that link whether it is the same version of the bill though (ie. whether the same sex marriage and abortion amendments are incorporated in to that version of the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill). If not, then it is back to the drawing board until one of the houses passes the other's bill in the exact same form.--Darryl Kerrigan (talk) 18:09, 10 July 2019 (UTC)