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Some History of LGBT Related Laws

History of LGBT-Related Laws


Taken From WikiPedia


Throughout history and across cultures, the regulation of sexuality reflects broader cultural norms.


Most of the history of sexuality is unrecorded. Even recorded norms do not always shed full light on actual practices, as it is sometimes the case that historical accounts are written by foreigners with cryptic political agendas.


In the earlier centuries of ancient Rome (particularly during the Roman Republic) and prior to its Christianization, the Lex Scantinia forbade homosexual acts. In later centuries during, men of status were free to have sexual intercourse, heterosexual or homosexual, with anyone of a lower social status, provided that they remained dominant during such interaction. During the reign of Caligula, prostitution was legalized and taxed, and homosexual prostitution was seen openly in conjunction with heterosexual prostitution. The Warren Cup is a rare example of a Roman artefact that depicts homosexuality that was not destroyed by Christian authorities, although it was suppressed. A fresco from the public baths of the once buried city of Pompeii depicts a homosexual and bisexual sex act involving two adult men and one adult woman. The Etruscan civilization left behind the Tomb of the Diver, which depicts homosexual men in the afterlife.


In feudal Japan, homosexuality was recognized, between equals (bi-do), in terms of pederasty (wakashudo), and in terms of prostitution. The Samurai period was one in which homosexuality was seen as particularly positive. In Japan, the younger partner in a pederastic relationship was expected to make the first move; the opposite was true in ancient Greece. Homosexuality was later briefly criminalized due to Westernization.


The berdache two-spirit class in some Native American tribes are examples of ways in which some cultures integrated homosexuals into their society by viewing them, not with the homosexual and heterosexual dichotomy of most of the modern world, but as twin beings, possessing aspects of both sexes.


The ancient Law of Moses (the Torah) forbids men lying with men (intercourse) in Leviticus 18 and gives a story of attempted homosexual rape in Genesis in the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, the cities being soon destroyed after that. The death penalty was prescribed.


Similar prohibitions are found across Indo-European cultures in Lex Scantinia in Ancient Rome and nith in protohistoric Germanic culture, or the Middle Assyrian Law Codes dating 1075 BC.


Laws prohibiting homosexuality were also passed in communist China. (The People's Republic of China neither adopted an Abrahamic religion nor was colonized, except for Hong Kong and Macau which were colonized with Victorian era social mores and maintain separate legal system from the rest of the PRC.) Homosexuality was not decriminalized there until 1997. Prior to 1997, homosexual in mainland China was found guilty included in a general definition under the vague vocabulary of hooliganism, there are no specifically anti-homosexual laws.


In modern times eight countries have no official heterosexist discrimination. They are Argentina, Belgium, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, South Africa, and Spain. This full non-discrimination includes the rights of marriage and adoption. Two additional countries have marriage rights for same-sex couples, namely Portugal and Canada, but in Portugal this right does not include same-sex adoption, and in Canada it varies by jurisdiction (it is legal everywhere except in Nunavut and Yukon). The Canadian Blood Services’ policy indefinitely defers any man who has sex with another man, even once, since 1977. LGBT people in the USA face different laws for certain medical procedures than other groups. For example, gay men have been prohibited from giving blood since 1983, and George W. Bush's FDA guidelines barred them from being sperm donors as of 2005, even though all donated sperm is screened for sexually-transmitted diseases and even the most promiscuous heterosexual men are not barred from donating.


Appreciation to AGM for his contribution.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Fears of Witch Hunt against Iraqi Gays after Police Raid on Karbala Safe House

Taken From UK Gay News
 
UK media, politicians have been too quiet for too long about the violence LGBT people in Iraq” –  Hili
 
 
 
■ Arrested by the police, and then he was discovered in hospital.  How, and by whom, the pictured neck and throat injury was inflicted is not known.  The victim, a gay man, also suffered other injuries.
photo courtesy Iraqi LGBT

 
LONDON, June 22, 2010    There is growing concern that the Iraqi government is stepping up a witch-hunt against gays and lesbians in the country after a police raid on a Karbala safe house, the London-based Iraqi LGBT said at the weekend.
Last week, twelve police officers are reported to have burst into the safe house, and then violently beat up, and blindfolded the six occupants sheltering there before bundling them off in three vans.
According to a source who witnessed the raid, the police also confiscated computer equipment before burning down the house, the London group said in a statement.
According to reports reaching London, one of the arrested people has turned up in hospital.  However, nothing is known about the whereabouts of the other five individuals, which include two gay men, one lesbian and two transgender people.
It is feared they may have been taken to the Interior Ministry in Baghdad, where, it is reported, many gay people have been tortured and executed in the last two years.
Government forces have previously sized people particularly at roadblocks and handed them to militias who have then tortured them and their bodies have later been found.
None of the previous occupying powers have taken any action or delivered any criticism for these atrocities.
Iraqi LGBT feels that the reason that both the British and United States governments in particular have not criticised the Iraqi government is “because of the legacy of the occupation”.
He US and UK  have both criticised Malawi and Uganda over LGBT human rights. There is strong religious opposition to homosexuality in both African countries — as there is in Iraq, Iraqi LGBT pointed out.
“Since the fall of Saddam, militias loyal to Shi’a clerics Grand Ayatollah al Sistani and Muqtada al Sadr, both of whom have called for homosexuals to be put to death, have been only too keen to carry out their leaders’ wishes,” the group says.
“Over 720 LGBT people have disappeared or been murdered, many of whom have been tortured to death.
“There is strong evidence that the government is colluding with these militia groups, by rounding up known homosexual and transgender people.”
A small number of safe houses, set up for LGBT people to live in relative safety, have been funded by Iraqi LGBT.  In the current climate, these homes have been life-savers for those taking refuge in them.
The house which was raided on last week had been established in January this year.
With the arrests and the seizure of computers last week, activists fear that the government will step up efforts to round up more of the country’s LGBT population.
“The UK media and politicians have been too quiet for too long about the violence LGBT people in Iraq,” said Ali Hili, leader of Iraqi LGBT.
“The militia and the powers that be know they can get away with it while that silence continues.
“It really is time for the Iraqi government to act on this and stop playing the role of guilty bystanders, while our brothers and sisters are murdered in silence.”
Currently the UK Border Agency is deporting many Iraqis, some who left the country in fear of their lives after death threats from gangsters and religious militia.
“The government is grossly underestimating the danger faced by Iraqi refugees.” Mr. Ali pointed out.  “The raid [last week] proves, for LGBT people especially, [that] Iraq is a no-go zone”.
  The UK coalition government pledged last week that it would stop the deportation of asylum seekers who have had to leave particular countries because their sexual orientation or gender identification puts them at proven risk of imprisonment, torture or execution.
The pledge was contained in the Working for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Equality document launched by Home Secretary Teresa May, who is also Minister for Women and Equalities.
 
■ The damaged 'safe house' in Karbala following the raid by police last week. photo courtesy Iraqi LGBT London
 
 

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