The top Catholic bishop in France has told lawmakers that if they approve same-sex marriage, they will be risking violence at a time when the country has more pressing economic and social issues to deal with, according to Reuters.
The National Assembly voted to legalize same-sex marriage and gay adoptions last week.
Cardinal Andre Vingt-Trois accused the government of rushing the law through parliament without sufficient public debate.
"Forcing it through can simplify things for a while," he said. "To avoid paralyzing political life when there are grave economic and social decisions to take, it would have been more reasonable and simple to not have started this process."
Protests have been prevalent in France, with many opposing gay marriage winding up behind bars. Seventy protesters were arrested just this week.
Vingt-Trois said the main protests are by “normal, concerned citizens” and did not reflect the "religious, retrograde and homophobe mania" that some of their more vocal critics ascribed to them, Reuters reported.
French lawmakers will vote whether or not to give the final okay to the gay rights bill in late May.