ST Forum: Fallacy to talk of 'gay' discrimination (Oct 20)

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Fallacy to talk of 'gay' discrimination

I STRONGLY disagree with the assertions made in the letter, 'Why is one law 'archaic' and not the other?' (ST, Oct 18), by Ms Tan Yen Ling.

It is obvious that homosexuals are part of family units - that is not the point in contention. However, the core family unit is and must be formed around the union of a man and a woman. Repealing Section 377A of the Penal Code will threaten this core family structure by paving the way for homosexual marriages.

It is a fallacy to state that there is discrimination against homosexuals - sexual orientation/preferences are not 'rights'. Hence the question of 'discrimination' does not arise.

The issue of homosexual marriages is vastly different from interracial or inter-religious marriages. In both of the latter instances, the basic family structure of union of man and woman is preserved.

Ms Tan tells of 'parents who were initially disapproving coming around after they got to know their child's partner and see the sincerity and realness of the relationship'.

Sincerity and realness of a relationship is hardly the test for what is morally right. Otherwise, an incestuous couple with a 'sincere and real' relationship would qualify for approval as well.

Lastly, comparing the repeal of Section 498 with Section 377A is like comparing apples with oranges. The repeal of Section 498 is based on the equality of men and women. Section 498 is not about adultery. It may include the act of enticing a person away (without having sex with her) for someone else to seduce her.

It was enacted at a time when women were less educated and were in need of protection. Such protection is no longer needed.

The repeal of Section 498 affirms the equality of women. Equality of gender is a universal right.

On the other hand, Section 377A deals with sexual behaviour, and sexual conduct/behaviour is not a 'right'.

Boaz Nazar

Sexual orientation/preferences are not 'rights'. Hence the question of 'discrimination' does not arise.