Sex is personal yet becomes political when a nation decides to interfere in acts between consenting adults.
Today’s decision in India by the Supreme Court is such a step backwards… reinforcing a retrograde law from 1860.
A bit of background – in 2009 the Delhi High Court made a landmark ruling that took a step towards decriminalising sex between two consenting same gendered adults. However noted that this is ultimately a matter for the government decide through legislation. In the interim, the matter made it to the Supreme Court with the ruling out today… re-confirming that homosexuality is criminal in India?!
Wanna learn more? Just read Gay sex, homosexuality is an offence: Supreme Court upholds Section 377. Black day for LGBT community
The Canada I grew up in put this matter behind it… before he became Prime Minister, Pierre Elliott Trudeau was responsible for introducing the Criminal Law Amendment Act, 1968-69 whose provisions included decriminalizing homosexual acts between consenting adults. Trudeau famously said “there’s no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation… what’s done in private between adults doesn’t concern the Criminal Code”. (CBCNews 1967-12-21).
Being gay is healthy, beautiful and normal… it is NOT a criminal act! And this is the land of the Kama Sutra which celebrates sexuality in many forms. I hate that dear friends here in India have been so insulted.
So today I’m openly declaring my support of same-sex partnerships, marriage, what ever your cup of tea as long as it is between two consenting adults! And am delighted to see the deep outrage from many corners today’s decision met. There is even a movement “Gay for a day” on Facebook picking up support as our fabulous GBL community and its supporters stand up!
There are times when the values I grew up with are not in synch with the home I live in today. No place is perfect, but I’m at least heartened by just how many friends and acquaintances are loudly and publicly shouting their dismay at the decision.
Perhaps someone will take inspiration from Trudeau’s years as Minister of Justice and have the courage to steward a change in the penal code to decriminalize homosexuality in India once and for all. Who knows, s/he may become as exceptional a Prime Minister as Trudeau and inspire her/his own “Trudeau mania” with a new generation… Any takers?
- India’s Supreme Court declares homosexual sex illegal (edition.cnn.com)
- Gay sex illegal, says Supreme Court, sets aside high court order – NDTV (ndtv.com)
- New Delhi | India’s Supreme Court re-criminalizes homosexuality (thejournalist.ie)
- Law criminalizing homosexuality stands, India’s top court says (ctvnews.ca)
- India Court Bans Gay Sex… (online.wsj.com)
- Being Gay in India (online.wsj.com)
Oh my. So it’s legal to rape your wife in India, but not to have sex with a consenting adult who happens to be of the same sex. Fucked, much?! 😦
Not quite so simple as that but yes… fucked, much indeed!
Its’ not legal to rape your wife in India. But the latest SC ruling is an insult to the country. And yes, the response of the people, especially celebrities, has been encouraging…Several well-known figures have taken up the issue openly.
The more that are public in saying its time to tackle real change to bring legislation… the more there is a chance a few political leaders will have the backbone to do something. Trudeau’s time as Minister of Justice brought landmark changes to Canada which set the tone for a significant shift in a more liberal direction… Wouldn’t it be amazing if someone with such vision and strength of character, conviction and charisma could do the same here?
Yes. India definitely needs an inspiring statesman.
But I don’t think there is anybody from the present crop of politicians who can rise to the occasion. But one can hope.
Hope springs eternal!! Or some such thing 🙂
‘Tathastu’ as they say here, for the emergence of a Trudeau like prime minister!! Not holding my breath for the bill to be passed in a hurry.though. We, the vociferous, urban educated, do not constitute their vote bank 😦
May not constitute the vote bank but this isn’t just an urban educated matter either. There are stories that every once and a while that surface of two women from rural India who somehow manage to find support to get ‘married.’ One can always hope that the bill will pass sooner rather than later. 🙂
I fear the world is turning backwards! Only this morning I read that an Australian state has OVERTURNED legislation allowing gay marriage – rendering 27 marriages invalid!
How loud do the people have to shout before they are heard?
Yikes! Thanks for the link on Australia – how retrograde?! At least here in India the current govt party just “came out” in support of gay rights… however there is much between a few words and real legislation to overturn a law from 1860!