Tiny Island Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage But No Gay Couples Want To Wed
Pitcairn Island, a pint-sized British Overseas Territory in the Pacific with a population of 48, ruled to allow same-sex marriage, according to the Huffington Post.
Its native inhabitants are the descendants of crew members of an old British navy ship and their Tahitian partners.
There are no known same-sex couples who want to wed on Pitcairn Island, but last month, the country's local council unanimously approved a law, making it legal for such couples to wed.
British officials reportedly advised the island's lawmakers to legalize gay marriage since England, Wales and Scotland already did so.
Pitcairn resident Meralda Warren told the Associated Press,
It's not Pitcairn Islanders that were pushing for it. But it's like anything else in the world. It's happening everywhere else, so why not?
However, the island has just one preacher, a Seventh-Day Adventist, and that particular religion does not recognize same-sex marriage.
But Warren said Pitcairn's administrator may be able to form the legal union.
The law also allows same-sex couples who have left the island to get married upon their return, said Rodney Croome, the national director of the same-sex advocacy group Australian Marriage Equality.
Croome told the Associated Press,
And assuming there's not a residency requirement, I could imagine some couples from off the island might find it a romantic destination, including Australians who can't marry in their own country.
The activist believes Pitcairn's decision speaks volumes about the welcoming nature of its people.
[The law] shows how much the islanders value equality and inclusion. It effectively says that gay islanders belong on Pitcairn Island as much as anyone else, and that's a positive message.
Same-sex marriage has been legal in Pitcairn since May 15, but due to technical problems on the island's official website, the law wasn't publicized until now.