Anti-Same-Sex Marriage Groups Call for Referendum as Bills Draw Closer to Legalization

Anti-Same-Sex Marriage Groups Call for Referendum as Bills Draw Closer to Legalization
Photo Credit: Reuters / 達志影像

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The organizer of the two-day protest says the decision for such a crucial issue should not lie in the hands of legislators but should be settled through a nation-wide referendum.

With Taiwan edging closer to becoming the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage, nearly 100 people from various local anti-LGBT groups protested in Taipei over the weekend.

The anti-same-sex marriage protesters demanded the government hold a referendum to decide whether or not same-sex marriage should be legalized. They held signs with slogans such as, “same-sex marriage, loss of ethics,” and “diversified families a lie, sugar-coating sexual liberation with human rights,” on Ketagalan Blvd., which leads to the Presidential Office.

Organizer of the protest, pastor Deborah Hsing (忻底波拉), said marriage between the same gender does not have the function of reproduction and is not beneficial to a country’s sustainability, reports United Daily News. She said same-sex marriage is not a human right, but a "sexual liberation movement," and will lead to a faster increase of the LGBT population. The pastor also said the decision for such a crucial issue should not lie in the hands of legislators but should be settled through a nation-wide referendum.

Photos of a leaflet for the protest have been circulating on the Internet. It gives nine examples of the influences LGBT movements may have on the society, including "sex offenders all not guilty," "gay men believing themselves to be women, spending the night with your wife at home," "lesbians living with your husband," and so on.

The protesters spent Saturday night on Ketagalan Blvd. and resumed their protest the next day. Students groups from various universities arrived at the Legislative Yuan on Sunday, calling for the anti-LGBT groups to not “exhibit acts of hate in the name of love,” reports Liberty Times.

The students said that gays are also human beings and LGBT rights are human rights. It is one’s freedom to decide whether he/she wants to get married, and a referendum should not be necessary, the students said.

Miao Po-ya (苗博雅) from the Social Democratic Party and long-term advocate for marriage equality joined the students in their demonstration. The 28-year-old politician said the youths supporting same-sex marriage are doing so for the benefit of the public and are reinforcing constitutional rights, reports Liberty Times.

Miao posted a photo of the protest on Facebook with the caption, “Love doesn't always win, but love will win.”

Two draft amendments to the Civil Code regarding same-sex marriage passed the first reading in the Legislative Yuan on Nov. 8, and will be reviewed by the Judiciary and Organic Laws and Statutes Committee. One draft was proposed by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislator Yu Mei-nu (尤美女) and the other from opposition Kuomintang (KMT) legislator Hsu Yu-jen (許毓仁), with another similar proposal by the New Power Party (NPP) is still pending.

Editor: Edward White