Latin America’s Rights Riddle
Why the region says yes to same-sex marriage and no to abortion.
By Omar G. Encarnación
August 27, 2018
In Latin America, progressive politics present something of a mystery: As LGBT rights have flourished, women’s reproductive rights have floundered. Earlier this month, for example, a bill to legalize abortion in the first 14 weeks of pregnancy was defeated in the Argentine Senate. This is the same body that in 2010 made Argentina the first Latin American country to legalize same-sex marriage with identical rights to heterosexual marriage. And since that historic milestone, Argentina has enacted one of the most liberal laws on gender identity to be found anywhere in the world. Its code allows people to change the gender listed on their legal documents without a diagnosis of gender dysphoria or permission from a judge, as is required in most countries. The country has also granted same-sex couples reproductive rights, such as access to in vitro fertilization under the national health plan, and has banned programs that aim to “cure” same-sex attraction.