Ten years ago this week, the Netherlands became the world’s first nation to legalize same-sex marriage. Veteran reporter Rex Wockner was in Amsterdam’s City Hall that night and today he reposts this excerpt from his report on the proceedings:
Amid an international media frenzy, the weddings took place at City Hall as the law became effective at the stroke of midnight. Mayor Job Cohen officiated. As Cohen finished his opening remarks at 11:58 p.m., the audience in the City Council chambers began syncopated clapping as they waited for the room’s clock to click over to 12:00. When it clicked, cheers erupted.
Wockner notes: “In the intervening 10 years, 14,813 of the Netherlands’ 55,000 gay couples have gotten married, according to Statistics Netherlands. Of those couples, 7,522 were female and 7,291 were male. There have been 1,078 same-sex divorces, 734 of them by female couples.”
RELATED: Canada legalized same-sex marriage nationwide in 2005 in a ruling that made legal a gay wedding that had taken place in January 2001. Call it “ten years with an asterisk.”