So I’m a little behind on the breaking news here, but I’ve been busy this week and haven’t had much of a chance to keep up with posts. Most of the world found out on Thursday morning that by 4 am on the same morning, congress had finally come to a decision on gay marriage. It is now legal for gay couples to get married in this country. Argentina has long been considered the most open and gay-friendly country in Latin America, and now it is the first country in the region to grant the same rights and protections to those couples who wed.
The issue has been debated strongly here in the last few weeks, and everyone has been discussing the topic as if it’s life or death, which isn’t saying much because everything is like that here. From what I’ve heard from the locals, there are those who are strongly in favor, strongly against, or simply feel that gay couples should have the right to do what they want, but it’s none of their business. In other words, it’s the same kind of debate that goes on elsewhere in the world.
Coming from Massachusetts, the first state in the U.S. to legalize gay marriage, I relayed a story to my coworker about the day it was legalized. My Psychology teacher, who was openly gay, was suddenly not in class. The next day she returned and proudly announced that she had gotten married after being with her partner for years. I’m not going to get into my own opinions on the matter because the point of this blog isn’t to bring politics into debate, but I’ll say that it’s harder to explain why it’s only legal for gays to marry in certain states and not throughout the country. On the other hand, gay marriage is legal all over Argentina, and not only in Buenos Aires.
On Thursday night I went with my two coworker friends Vero and Leo to a dinner and tango show at El Querandí in San Telmo. It was the coldest day of the year and we slowly ambled down to the venue, freezing along the way. Once there we were given a short tour of the facilities and led to our table in front of the stage. As dinner was served we continued to discuss the topic of gay marriage, and I listened as they explained the things I otherwise wouldn’t have access to. Leo explained how message boards were sending people links to articles written by extremists, and how pundits were talking long into the night on pro and anti-viewpoints.
The show was good and was actually the 5th professional tango show I’ve seen here in under a year. After the performance ended and everyone stood up, we could see an openly gay couple make for the door. No one seemed to make any comments or care. I think that’s exactly what they want. To just be accepted like everyone else. Now, at least by law anyway, they have that right in Argentina.