While my heart sank this week reading about two men in Indonesia being publicly beaten, I was pleasantly surprised to read the news yesterday that not too far away on another Pacific island, Taiwan’s highest court ruled that same-sex marriage bans violate that country’s constitution.
According to judges on the Constitutional Court, sexual orientation is an “immutable characteristic that is resistant to change.”
The justices called sexual orientation an “immutable characteristic that is resistant to change” and that marriage bans violate their personal freedom and equal protection. The court directed Taiwan’s government to change its marriage laws within two years. If the change does not occur within that time, same-sex couples will be allowed to register to marry and obtained the status of “a legally recognized couple.”
Taiwan’s president has already asked for the creation of legal framework to comply with the court’s decision.
The court also said that when same-sex couples create “a permanent union of intimate and exclusive nature for the committed purpose of managing a life together,” they’re not affecting the rights of people in a heterosexual marriage.