A Chilean Roman Catholic bishop
testifying before lawmakers considering a civil unions law has
claimed that gay marriage “destroys humans.”
Juan Ignacio Gonzalez, the bishop of
San Bernardo, offered his testimony to the Senate's Committee on the
Constitution considering creation of the Life Partner Agreement
(Acuerdo de Vida en Pareja, or AVP), which would allow gay and
lesbian couples who have lived together for more than one year to
register their relationship with a notary.
Gonzalez told the lawmakers that “this
position leads to the destruction of human beings and although they
deny it to the destruction of social peace.”
In 2011, President Sebastian Pinera
sent to Congress his Life Partner proposal, angering leaders of his
center-right coalition who responded by proposing an amendment to the
nation's constitution banning gay marriage. Representative Gustavo
Hasbun said he acted because he fears that Pinera's proposal could
lead to full marriage rights for gay couples in Chile.
“It is not necessary to create this
parallel institution because this will weaken, in one way or another,
marriage,” Hasbun said.