A look into the Homosexual rights around the world and how far the UK has come since 1533 when being homosexual was punishable by death.
Jessica Van Deventer
Here we are, it is 2015 and still homosexual people around the world are fighting for equality. They aren’t asking to be made the rulers of straight people, (as the fabulous Queens we are), no just for the same rights and opportunities as everyone else. In case you didn’t know, this is because ancient literature written thousands of years ago, made of selected books (because why use the rest of them? when the book is already SO perfect)- says so;
- Lev. 18:22 , “You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination.”
- Lev. 20:13, “If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their bloodguiltness is upon them.”
I am not here to talk about the bible and its glaring contradictions, events that actually happened a hundred years after they were recorded to have happened or that I consider it to be just another man-made form of control. However, I do want to discuss just how far the UK has come and how far a lot of the world… hasn’t.
Our society has come a very long way within our progression of gay acceptance. to think some fifty years ago it was severely frowned upon for a man to hold another man’s hand…Western society has really progressed, and thats amazing. However, it would be ignorant to live in a little rainbow bubble thinking everyone has the same rights. people across the world, especially in countries like Nigeria are still imprisoned and even murdered purely for their ability to love. how on earth are we punishing people and hating people because of LOVE?!
Some people who are against gay marriage might use the argument of what next….? for example, you could marry your dog, or your sister or your mother or even your sandwich. But here’s the thing, incest and paedophilia are sexual perversions. they are based on manipulation and sexual abuse. Gay marriage is based on two consenting adults who love each other… I repeat… gay marriage is about LOVE, not sex.
But I am preaching to the converted here. It is 2015 and it has been almost 2 years since the legislation to have same-sex marriages in the UK legalised, has been passed. Since this, 15 000 couples of the same-sex have married, Britain had its’ first openly married gay vicar elected into the Synod of the Church of England, Tom Daley, an athlete for the UK has become engaged to Dustin Lance – a gay right’s activist and director of the movie ‘Milk’. We have had a positive change in the British public’s views of same-sex couples with half of the British public in favour of same-sex marriage and majority of the public say that same sex marriages are just as equal as heterosexual marriages. However, we have had Christopher Biggins, a tv personality who has been in a civil partnership with Neil Sinclair since 2006 who opposes the law change as he believes that marriages are for heterosexual couples and that, we can’t get rid of everything.
Over the years countries such as the Netherlands, Belgium, Canada, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, Norway, Portugal, Iceland, Argentina, France, New Zealand, Denmark, Uruguay, England and Wales, Ireland, Estonia, Slovenia, Finland and Luxembourg have all legalized same-sex marriage. More and more people are coming out of the closet but there are still fears of judgement and bullying. “People are scared they’ll upset their fans. but the fans don’t care.” – Christopher Biggins (Pinknews 19/10/2015)
The film ‘The Imitation Game’ 2014, directed by Morten Tyldum, starring Benedict Cumberbatch who acts out the life of Alan Turing, a Princeton graduate who helped crack the German’s Enigma machine in WW2 and thus helping to win the war. He was found guilty of gross indecency in the mid twentieth century and was chemically castrated instead of serving time in jail. He passed away in 1954 having committed suicide. A remarkable man, affected by the prejudices of that time, against gay men, a law that was only changed in 1967. Alan Turing was given a royal pardon by Her Majesty The Queen in 2013 after a campaign involving Stephen Hawking and Richard Dawkins.
Although we may be taking steps toward total equality, there are still 38 African countries that have laws against homosexuality. There are still five countries in the world where it is punishable by death to be gay. Iran is one of these countries as are most Middle-Eastern countries. In Cameroon if you are perceived to be gay, you are arrested. In Nigeria same-sex marriage is punishable with fourteen years in prison. Just knowing someone is gay and not turning them in, gets you arrested for aiding and abetting. No activist groups like LGBT are allowed to be formed. Russia… have public killings of gay people.
Many people are arguing that each step the Western world takes to equality for homosexual people, is a step back for all the countries opposing it as they say that if they give their homosexual people even the most basic rights they will eventually lead to becoming like the Western World.
So while we are celebrating the fights we have won… let us keep in mind those that are still in battle. Whatever you believe in, whoever you pray to or don’t… just keep in mind these innocents. For it could have been you.
“You wanna tell them their love is different, you wanna make that distinction? You wanna tell them that this beautiful and limitless thing we call love has rules and a proper way to do it and that their love is less love because an old book don’t approve it?” – ‘Same Love’ Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.