Same-sex and opposite-sex couples hold joint wedding to support equality

Three couples married in Taiwan (Photo: YouTube)

A day after Taiwan’s parliament voted to legalize same-sex marriage, two gay couples and one straight couple held a joint wedding on Saturday (18 May).

The social media stars organized the ceremony in support of same-sex marriage and promote gender equality.

Leading LGBTI activists, including veteran LGBT rights activist Chi Chia-wei and coordinator of Marriage Equality Coalition Taiwan Jennifer Lu attended.

Taiwan’s parliament on Friday (17 May) became the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage.

The president is expected to sign the bill into law before this Friday (24 May).

Saturday’s event, therefore, was a wedding ceremony and celebration and the couples will likely register with the government at another time.

According to the Taipei Times, all three couples said their parents disapproved of their relationships.

But, they said, they never gave up communicating with their families.

Chi Chia-wei echoed this perseverance in his speech. He said people had labeled him a ‘pervert’ when he first lobbied parliament for same-sex marriage.

The legendary activist also encouraged the newlyweds to love, trust, help and tolerate each other, according to the Taipei Times.

He congratulated Taiwan in being the 27th country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage.

First in Asia

Taiwan became the first place in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage on Friday (17 May).

The country’s parliament voted in favor of a government bill offering same-sex couples similar rights to opposite-sex couples.

It comes after years of court rulings, referendums, and tussles in parliament.

The crucial 4th line of the bill passed with 93 lawmakers voting for the bill, 66 opposing, and 27 abstaining.

Thousands of LGBTI rights supporters gathered outside parliament and cheered as the vote was announced.

It was the result of work by LGBTI groups over the last 30 years, said Benson Lee of Marriage Equality Coalition Taiwan.

‘Legislators have come forward and stood on the side of love’ he told Gay Star News.

He said the movement will not stop here. ‘We will continue our work in eradicating discrimination and bullying and defending LGBTI education’.

In a last-minute effort to appease conservative lawmakers, Taiwan’s ruling party on Friday removed the word ‘marriage’ from the bill.

But, same-sex couples can still get register for marriage in the same way as other couples.

Couples can only adopt children if the child is the biological child of one of the couple.

Taiwan is the regional leader for LGBTI rights. Thailand’s ruling junta last year submitted a union bill to cabinet, affording limited rights to same-sex couples.

Author: Rik Glauert

The post Same-sex and opposite-sex couples hold joint wedding to support equality appeared first on Gay Star News.

Pete Buttigieg Calls Out Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham at FOX News Town Hall: WATCH

On tonight’s FOX News town hall Mayor Pete Buttigieg called out Tucker Carlson for calling immigrants “dirty” and Laura Ingraham for calling child detention centers “summer camps.”

Said Buttigieg: “A lot of folks in my party were critical of me even doing this with FOX News, and I get where that’s coming from, especially when you see what goes on with some of the opinion hosts on this network. When you got Tucker Carlson saying immigrants make America dirty, when you’ve got Laura Ingraham comparing detention centers with children in cages to summer camps…summer camps? Then there is a reason why anybody has to swallow hard and think twice before participating in this media ecosystem. But I also believe that even though some of those hosts are not always there in good faith, I think a lot of people who tune into this network, who do it in good faith. And there are a lot of Americans who my party can’t blame if they are ignoring our message cause they will never hear it if we don’t go on and talk about it.”

Mayor Pete got big applause for his remarks on abortion: “I believe that the right of a woman to make her own decisions, about her reproductive health and her body is a national right.”

Asked how he would deal with Trump’s tweets, Buttigieg replied, “I don’t care.” He went on to admit that the tweets are difficult to ignore: “It is the nature of grotesque things that you can’t look away.”

Part 1 of the Town Hall:

Part 2:

Part 3:

Part 4:

The post Pete Buttigieg Calls Out Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham at FOX News Town Hall: WATCH appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.

Indonesian police going to court alleging he was fired for being gay

Two Indonesian police officers on patrol (Photo: Wikipedia)

An Indonesian police officer who alleges he was fired because he’s gay is taking the police force to court.

Known as Brigadier TT, local media reports the 30-year-old was dishonorably discharged due to his sexuality in 2017.

He is now taking the Central Java force to court over the dismissal.

Homosexuality is not illegal in Indonesia, except for in one state with sharia law.

But, since 2016, Islamic fundamentalism has fueled anti-LGBTI rhetoric and policies from the nation’s leaders.

Police reportedly arrested Brigadier TT in 2017 under suspicion of extortion.

‘But during the interrogation, [TT] was instead questioned about his sexual orientation, which they said was deviant. There is actually no such thing as a deviant sexual orientation. [TT] only has a sexual orientation that puts him in the minority,” TT’s attorney, Ma’ruf Bajammal, told Suara.

An ethics committee ruled to dishonorably discharge him in October that year.

Employers formally ejected him from the force In December 2018. He had served for 10 years.

National Police Spokesperson Dedi Prasetyo defended the decision.

It was a police officer’s duty to adhere to ‘legal norms and observe religious norms, polite behavior, moral standards, as well as uphold human rights’ he told Suara.

LGBTI life in Indonesia

Muslim-majority Indonesia is one of the worst places to be gay in Asia.

Religious and political leaders have been whipping up hatred against the LGBTI community for the last three years.

The crackdown has seen police raids on LGBTI clubs and saunas, publications, and even HIV charities.

While there is no national law against gay sex, authorities have introduced local by-laws to drive out their LGBTI populations or used archaic pornography laws to prosecute.

That’s why most remain in the closet, living in fear.

Author: Rik Glauert

The post Indonesian police going to court alleging he was fired for being gay appeared first on Gay Star News.