Posts Tagged 'religion'

“Traditional” Marriage or a Break with Tradition?


By Stephanie Coontz
June 30, 2008

The recent California court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage has elicited a new round of warnings about the threats to “traditional” marriage. Marriage, say foes of the ruling, has always been a union of one man and one woman, with procreation as its central purpose. And Christianity in particular has historically surrounded marriage with sacred ceremonies, reserved for those who understand its solemn meaning, they contend. Compelling either church or state to accept the validity of same-sex unions would force these institutions, in defiance of tradition, to condone marriages of which they disapprove.

Continue reading ‘“Traditional” Marriage or a Break with Tradition?’

The Sexual Threat to Fundamentalism


By Michelle Goldberg
December 29, 2008

During this holiday season—a time, ideally, of peace, empathy, kindness and transcendence—gays and lesbians have reason to feel themselves under siege by ostensible men of God. First there was the Rick Warren affair, with its concomitant message that, unlike racism or anti-Semitism, gay and lesbian equality is something decent people can disagree on. Then, just days later, in his Christmas greeting to the Roman Curia, the Pope saw fit to compare homosexuality—and, indeed, any deviation from binary gender roles—to the destruction of the rainforests. Continue reading ‘The Sexual Threat to Fundamentalism’

Der Spiegel: Wave of Homophobia Sweeps the Muslim World

17  September 2009
Der Spiegel Online

The Gay Sons of Allah
Wave of Homophobia Sweeps the Muslim World

By Juliane von Mittelstaedt and Daniel Steinvorth

In most Islamic countries, gay men and women are ostracized, persecuted and in some cases even murdered. Repressive regimes are often fanning the flames of hatred in a bid to outdo Islamists when it comes to spreading “moral panic.”

Bearded men kidnapped him in the center of Baghdad, threw him into a dark hole, chained him down, urinated on him, and beat him with an iron pipe. But the worst moment for Hisham, 40, came on the fourth day of his ordeal when the kidnappers called his family. He was terrified they would tell his mother that he is gay and that this was the reason they had kidnapped him. If they did he would never be able to see his family again. The shame would be unbearable for them.

“Do what you want to me, but don’t tell them,” he screamed. Continue reading ‘Der Spiegel: Wave of Homophobia Sweeps the Muslim World’

In memoriam: Anthony Yeo (1949-2009)


22 Jul 2009

by C. S. Zhou

A memorial service will be held this Friday, Jul 24, to celebrate the life of Anthony Yeo, and to honour his contributions and support of the GLBTQ community. C. S. Zhou of the Free Community Church recalls his first meeting with the counsellor at a symposium to address homosexuality and the church a decade ago.

Widely regarded as Singapore’s “Father of Counselling”, Anthony Yeo, 60, passed away on Jun 20 from complications as a result of his leukaemia, leaving behind his brother, wife and two children. He was the founder and clinical director of Counselling and Care Centre. He had numerous letters published in the press on social issues including calling for more understanding and acceptance of lesbians and gays in society. The following tribute is contributed by C. S. Zhou of the Free Community Church. Continue reading ‘In memoriam: Anthony Yeo (1949-2009)’

ST: Delhi ruling a victory for gays

5 July 2009
Sunday Times

Delhi ruling a victory for gays 

by P. Jayaram, India Correspondent 

Exactly a decade ago when homosexuality was still a very hush-hush affair in India, more than a dozen men staged a march in Calcutta (now known as Kolkata), the teeming eastern metropolis.

The rag-tag bunch, wearing yellow T-shirts with the words ‘Walk on the Rainbow’, simply wanted to visit officials, judges, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and anyone who mattered to tell them ‘what we were all about’. Continue reading ‘ST: Delhi ruling a victory for gays’

ST: Delhi court legalises homosexual acts

3 July 2009
Straits Times (Top stories)

Delhi court legalises homosexual acts

In a landmark decision, British colonial-era law is overturned 
By P. Jayaram, India Correspondent 

NEW DELHI: A court yesterday ruled that homosexual acts between consenting adults are legal in India.

The ruling overturned a British colonial era law similar to the one on Singapore’s books that classifies same-sex practices as criminal offences. They were punishable by up to 10 years in prison in India.

The landmark judgment by the Delhi High Court was hailed by the country’s gay community but drew fire from religious leaders. Continue reading ‘ST: Delhi court legalises homosexual acts’

DNA: It is queer to give in to religious demands

1 July 2009
DNA  Magazine (India)

It is queer to give in to religious demands

By Antara Dev Sen

We have such a queer government. Last year it fought itself, as the home ministry opposed the health ministry’s attempt to decriminalise homosexuality. Then last week, right before the gay pride march, the two ministries seemed to bury their differences and cosy up as the law minister hinted at changing the archaic law. And this week it has hastily retraced its footsteps, announcing that if indeed there is a change in law it would happen only after a parliamentary debate and discussions with religious leaders. Continue reading ‘DNA: It is queer to give in to religious demands’

ST Forum: Self-described feminist mentor’s actions invited a reaction

19 May 2009
Straits times Online Forum

Self-described feminist mentor’s actions invited a reaction
I REFER to Monday’s letter by Dr Thio Su Mien, ‘Gay activists a key constituency of Aware’. I would like to highlight a number of statements she made that serve no purpose other than to confuse.

I am perplexed how Dr Thio can, in the same paragraph, say that Aware’s Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) manual ‘expressly states that homosexuality is neutral and normal’, and then go on to attack the content of the CSE programme as ‘non-neutral’. Continue reading ‘ST Forum: Self-described feminist mentor’s actions invited a reaction’

ST: ‘Questionable takeover but crucial service’

15 May 2009
Straits Times

‘Questionable takeover but crucial service’

THE Bishop of the Anglican Church in Singapore issued a pastoral letter last weekend explaining in greater detail his stand on the involvement of some Anglican women in the recent leadership tussle at women’s advocacy group Aware.

Dr John Chew said the tactics they used to gain office raised issues of ethics and propriety, even if they did not contravene Aware’s Constitution. Continue reading ‘ST: ‘Questionable takeover but crucial service’’

ST: Religious heads welcome Govt’s position

15 May 2009
Straits Times
Religious heads welcome Govt’s position
They agree with need to embrace diversity and its stand on gays

By Zakir Hussain, Political Correspondent

RELIGIOUS leaders have welcomed comments by Deputy Prime Minister Wong Kan Seng on the role of religious groups in the public sphere, and on the issue of homosexuality.

They reacted positively to Mr Wong’s call for religious groups to be mindful of wider sensitivities when engaging in the public square. Continue reading ‘ST: Religious heads welcome Govt’s position’