The legislation, which went into effect in Decemberleft it up to churches to decide whether or not they would conduct the marriages. Anthropologists have struggled to determine a definition of marriage that absorbs commonalities of the social construct across cultures around the world. February 24, - President George W. The vote to apply gender-neutral language to Iceland's definition of marriage passed unanimously in Parliament in June Article 1 of the bill defining marriage as an agreement between two people was passed on 2 February in its first reading by a —97 vote.
Same-sex parents and carers and their children are likely to benefit in numerous ways from legal recognition of their families, and providing such recognition through marriage will bestow greater benefit than civil unions or domestic partnerships.
The number of countries that have not legalized gay marriage outweighs the number of countries that do, which could take a turn in the opposite direction as nations progress over time. History of same-sex unionsTimeline of same-sex marriageand History of homosexuality. The introduction of same-sex marriage also called marriage equality has varied by jurisdiction, and came about through legislative change to marriage lawcourt rulings based on constitutional guarantees of equality, recognition that it is allowed by existing marriage law,  or by direct popular vote via referendums and initiatives.