In early bills allowing for same-sex marriage were passed by legislatures in Maryland and Washington state. In the early 21st century, however, Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, and Buddhism all spoke with more than one voice on this issue. In Denmark became the first country to establish registered partnerships—an attenuated version of marriage—for same-sex couples. While recent polls show that a majority of French adults support the law, opposition to the change has been intense. After the Bill received Royal Assent on July 20, , it finally became active, giving gay couples the opportunity to rejoice. United States Eleven years after same-sex marriage was first made legal in Massachusetts, the U. Although same-sex marriage has been regulated through law, religion, and custom in most countries of the world, the legal and social responses have ranged from celebration on the one hand to criminalization on the other. Argentina Argentina was the first country in Latin America to legalize same-sex marriage. Support for the law came from both the Flemish-speaking North and the French-speaking South, and the law generated surprisingly little controversy across the country. However, the law prohibits same-sex weddings within the Church of England, which continues to define marriage as between one man and one woman. In their view, because male and female are both necessary for procreation, the privileges of marriage should be available only to opposite-sex couples. The measure was enacted into law a few days later when Queen Margrethe II gave her royal assent to the bill. In many cultures the exchange of some form of surety, such as bride service, bridewealth , or dowry , has been a traditional part of the marriage contract. Twenty-seven out of countries have passed laws allowing gay marriage , according to the Pew Research Center. Finland The bill to call for the legislation of same-sex marriage started out as a "citizen's initiative" - with a reported , signatures. Many of these jurisdictions, as well as those that actively criminalize same-sex unions, contended that homosexuality and lesbianism are mental disorders and built their public policies on this premise.