ONTD Political

Straight Male Politicians Kiss For Marriage Equality Amid Huge Protests In France

8:39 pm - 01/28/2013

A pair of French politicians made a touching statement in support of LGBT equality this weekend, as protesters geared up for Tuesday's parliamentary debate on the country's marriage equality bill.

Socialist (and straight) members of French parliament Yann Galut and Nicolas Bays shared a kiss as part of the "Marriage for All" protests on Sunday, as tens of thousands marched around the country in support of same-sex marriage and adoption rights, reports French paper Liberation.

"We’re both straight, we’re both married with children," Galut said, according to a translation by Gay Star News. "But today with the kiss of solidarity, it meant we, as parliamentary members who start fighting for same-sex marriage legislation in two days, we stand in solidarity with homosexuals."

A photo of the symbolic kiss has gone viral, with the pair's colleagues on both sides of the aisle weighing in, according to Gay Star, with comments ranging from "heroic" to "ridiculous and needlessly provocative."

Galut and Bays' Kodak moment may remind many of a similar photo, showing two straight French women kissing in front of a group of anti-gay protestors in Marseille, France in October. The two teenage women told French magazine Têtu that, while they are both straight, they wanted to take a stand.

"While we were kissing, [the protesters] were screaming, 'You're disgusting! You are not beautiful!" one of the women told Têtu.

Sunday's "Marriage for All" demonstrations were attended by an estimated 125,000, according to France 24. While polling numbers show that a majority of French support gay marriage, the government bill has galvanized anti-gay protesters who staged massive protests against it earlier this month. The bill would legalize same-sex marriage in France and afford full adoption rights for same-sex couples, according to CNN.

On Jan. 13, hundreds of thousands of protesters marched along Paris's Champ de Mars in opposition to gay marriage, according to Reuters. The demonstration drew from an eclectic base, including practicing Catholics, the extreme far-right Front National party and others.

natyanayaki 29th-Jan-2013 02:43 am (UTC)
On the one hand (and mostly) I think this is awesome, but on the other I wish they didn't care so much to emphasize that they are straight, married, and have children (hmm...or maybe they think emphasizing that is a positive for marriage equality? I guess then it's OK/awesome that they emphasized that.).
redstar826 29th-Jan-2013 03:05 am (UTC)
yeah, I personally have mixed feelings about it.
natyanayaki 29th-Jan-2013 03:12 am (UTC)
Yeah, I don't want to be a Debbie Downer, and I don't want it to seem like I don't appreciate when anyone speaks out in favor of legal (and social) equality, but I always just side-eye the hell out of stuff like this. Like, if someone really is for equality, then why is it so important that the world see you as, or know that you are straight (or in other fights, not Jewish, or not Muslim, or not a specific race or ethnicity). I guess, it seems like it's a part of the problem, two men kissing shouldn't be a big deal regardless of the sexual orientations of the participants, and if they want to normalize it then just kiss and let it go, why talk about it, or talk about "oh, well...we're totally not gay." I just don't understand it.
girly123 29th-Jan-2013 04:33 am (UTC)
It's so that they avoid the media circus of having their sexualities questioned and roundly criticized by the media after their totally supportive publicity stunt, and thus avoiding what it's actually like to be a queer person in the pubic eye. The irony is kind of staggering when you consider it.
angelofdeath275 29th-Jan-2013 04:41 am (UTC)
natyanayaki 29th-Jan-2013 04:50 am (UTC)
That is amazingly true, and I'm embarrassed to say that hadn't crossed my mind. I wonder if they realize it, I hope they do or that someone points it out to them. I just hope that they do work to raise the bar of the status quo.
bellichka 29th-Jan-2013 02:01 pm (UTC)
YES, this is such a clear articulation of my issues. Awesome comment.
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