Ireland made history on Friday May 22nd when over 62% voted in favour of same sex marriage, a huge cultural shift for a country who’s national identity has long been associated with the strict religious doctrine of the Catholic Church. Many natives returned to home soil as part of the #voteyes campaign, one which saw a multitude of celebrities as well as political parties banding together to change history forever.
Such a change is monumental in a country where just 22 years ago homosexuality was still deemed a criminal offence. Here at People Tree we feel that such resounding support for equality in the face of adversity is fantastic news for progressive causes worldwide. For many, such a change was long overdue. Further than this, it is a change in the Irish constitution. For it to be changed again, a referendum on the same issue would have to be called, essentially solidifying the legality of gay marriage in Ireland.
However, this does not mean that churches are legally obligated to marry same sex couples. Catholic churches around Ireland are still free to deny same-sex couples the rights to marriage, but even the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin has described the outcome as a ‘social revolution,’ suggesting Ireland is quickly moving towards a climate of sexual tolerance and progressive values.