Led by Marion Marechal-Le Pen, the 24 year-old granddaughter of neo-Nazi National Front founder Jean-Marie Le Pen, who has been convicted multiple times of inciting racial hatred, today Manif Pour Tous yet again staged massive anti-gay rallies in Paris and Lyon, where tens of thousands marched against LGBT families. The granddaughter, seen in the first clip below, is the youngest person ever elected to France’s Parliament… the theme of today’s protest is anger over the right of same-sex couples to use surrogacy to build their families. A member of France’s opposition UMP party is live-tweeting many photos from the event.
It’s amazing, still, to me how much these people care and think it’s their business to stick their noses into other people’s families. Or is this all about using us, once again, as a wedge issue?
Sadly, following the pattern established in previous marches, rallies in France on the day that the marriage equality bill was passed once again became violent. Towleroad reports:
Despite the requests of organizers that marchers disperse peacefully, a hard core group of around 500 refused to leave the Invalides.Their anger soon boiled over as bottles and firecrackers were hurled at the riot police, who had blocked off a street leading to the parliament. One officer was taken to hospital with a head wound after being hit by a brick. “The clashes were extremely violent,” one officer told French media. Police, who responded with tear gas, made 12 arrests. The protesters also turned their ire on journalists in the vicinity, shouting “scumbags” and “collaborators” at the members of the press. At one point a mob of masked protesters chased a group of journalists down the street and a photographer from AFP was sprayed with tear gas.
Here’s a video showing some of the clashes:
Towleroad also reports on violence at the march in Lyon, France:
Police reported that 44 people were arrested in the eastern city of Lyon, France following yesterday’s passage of marriage equality.
And Think Progress reports that the National Organization For Marriage is finally acknowledging the violence at the rallies, even though they try to make it sound like both sides are responsible for it:
We urge all French citizens to contact lawmakers to express their strong opposition to this policy. We also call on all citizens to conduct themselves honorably and peacefully. Even though the same-sex marriage policy being foisted on an unwilling public is profoundly unwise and anti-family, no citizen should ever express their disapproval through violent means. We condemn in the strongest possible terms violence by anyone on either side of this debate.
Nice try, Mr. Brown, but the violence has been squarely on the side of the anti-gay marriage protesters.
Tens of thousands of people took to the streets of France to call for gay marriage to be legalized. Around 150,000 people joined the ‘demonstration for equality’ in Paris’s Place de la Bastille yesterday (16 December), urging the government to pass a same-sex marriage bill.
Protesters carried banners with slogans including ‘The right for all to choose’, ‘Love Has No Barriers’ and ‘Talk About Love’, reported France 24.
Rallies were also held in several other cities in France, including Toulouse, Marseille, Lyon and Nantes.