Today’s Solutions: June 26, 2022

Just because something is advanced in age doesn’t mean it’s set in old ways—something that the world’s oldest republic, San Marino, proved by appointing the world’s first openly gay head of state.

Astoundingly, San Marino was founded in the year 301 and is one of the very few medieval European city-states that have survived until now. Fewer than 35,000 citizens call San Marino home today.

The medieval micro-state in central Italy named 58-year-old Paolo Rondelli, a deputy in the Great and General Council in San Marino’s parliament and an outspoken LGBT activist, as one of two Captains Regent, its heads of state. While other heads of government in the world are openly gay (like Luxembourg’s prime minister, Xavier Bettel, and the Serbian prime minister, Ana Brnabic), Rondelli is the first who is head of state.

The announcement of Rondelli’s appointment is a huge step forward for San Marino, where homosexuality was criminalized up until 2004.

“San Marino had previously started on a path of profound revolution on the subject of rights,” asserts gay rights organization Arcigay Rimini, as reported by The Guardian. “This path, seen from the point of view of bogged-down Italy [where an anti-homophobic violence bill was voted down in the Senate last year] is astounding.”

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