The marriage equality movement has been sweeping across the Western wrold, mostly through changes in public opinion over the matter. Now, in less than two weeks, one western European country may become the first to completely legalize gay marriage through a popular vote. Ireland is set to hold the vote, and with a staggering 78% currently approving of the measure. This is particularly impressive due to Ireland’s historically Catholic population dynamic. The approval poll, has a very narrow margin of error, meaning that without any major changes to the discourse, the approval will almost certainly pass.
While many localities and states have approved or legalized gay marriage recently, Ireland is set to become the first one to do so through a popular vote. This is the most pure form of approval for a bill or referendum. Popular vote approval shows that the public opinion of gay marriage is drastically and quickly changing towards approval. In the United States, more and more states are legalizing gay marriage, but almost entirely through legal battles. Courts across the country have been handing down verdicts routinely stating that a state cannot legally or morally ban two people from marrying, regardless of their gender. Folks over at Skout believe Ireland may be the first to show that not only is gay marriage a legal matter of discrimination, but also a public good that can be passed by the popular vote.