(CMR) A anti same-sex marriage petition has been launched that will now put this issue on the forefront of the political agenda.
This petition is a direct challenge to the new that broke this morning that Caymanian Chantelle Day has mounted a legal challenge against the Cayman Islands marriage law to push for the legal right to have a same sex marriage in this jurisdiction.
The petition has places the issue of both no-fault divorces and same sex marriage in the same petition. In fact, they state:
“Likewise, eliminating damages for adultery is likely to increase infidelity and undermine marriages further. Adultery should be strongly discouraged and the victim should be compensated for the harm done. Payment of damages is another way to discourage adultery and compensate victims.”
It also supports the current position of same sex marriages being maintained:
“Recognition of same-sex civil unions is just a halfway step toward adopting same-sex marriage. The Cayman Islands should follow the example of Bermuda by refusing to go down this path.”
Ironically in February Bermuda became the first country in the world to pass, and then revoke, the law, replacing gay marriage with domestic partnerships.
The Domestic Partnership Act, approved by Bermuda Governor John Rankin rolled back the legalization. Instead of marriage, the act allows gay or straight couples to form a partnership, which the Bermuda government says carries equivalent rights.
According to Bermuda's minister of home affairs, Walton Brown, the majority of Bermudians do not agree with gay couples marrying.
He said: “The act is intended to strike a fair balance between two currently irreconcilable groups in Bermuda, by restating that marriage must be between a male and a female while at the same time recognizing and protecting the rights of same-sex couples.”
Because of Bermuda's status as an overseas dependent territory, the UK government had the power to block the law change.
But Foreign Office minister Harriett Baldwin told MPs: “After full and careful consideration in regards to Bermuda's constitutional and international obligations, the Secretary decided that in these circumstances it would not be appropriate to use this power to block legislation, which can only can be used where there is a legal or constitutional basis for doing so, and even then only in exceptional circumstances.”
Prime Minister Theresa May said she was “seriously disappointed” about the decision to abolish same-sex marriage.
But she added: “That bill has been democratically passed by the Parliament of Bermuda, and our relationship with the overseas territories is based on partnership and respect for their right to democratic self-government.”
MPs on all sides criticised the decision and called it a backward step.
Labour MP Chris Bryant said the law reversal will make Britain a “laughing stock in the international human rights field”.