1. Does section 377A of the penal code discriminates against homosexuals
Section 377A states: “Any male person who, in public or private, commits, or abets the commission of, or procures or attempts to procure the commission by any male person of, any act of gross indecency with another male person, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 2 years.”
Section 377A does not single out homosexual males. It applies to all males. A heterosexual male who curiously engages in anal or oral sex, or other acts of gross indecency, with another male is liable under section 377A as well. So the distinction here is that it is not the person, but the act, which the law is sanctioning against. In all fairness, every form of practice and behaviour promoted into mainstream affects the society; hence, must be subjected to objective analysis and scrutiny. Should an act be found detrimental to society at large, it is fair and necessary for the law to sanction against it.
2. Why does the law have to sanction against homosexual sex acts then?
The role of law is to protect the society. By protection, it involves guarding not only the realm of the physical, but psychological wellness, including social and hence, moral as well.
To understand why the law has to sanction against acts of gross indecency between males, we would have to explore how such an act, when allowed and promoted in society, will lead to detrimental effects in the society. You can read about some of the ill effects promoting homosexuality does to a society here.
Most importantly, we have to understand the role of traditional marriage. Marriage is a naturally occurring institution that predates governments. It is based on many facts and reasons, the most tangible and undeniable of it being that biological reproduction depends on a man and a woman. Decades of social science, including the latest studies using large samples and robust research methods, show that children tend to do best when raised by a mother and a father. The reality is that all children need a mother and a father, and marriage exists to bring a man and a woman together as husband and wife – to be father and mother to any children their union produces.
Marriage is therefore, the fundamental building block of all human civilization. Historically, governments, societies and civilizations recognizes marriage because it is an institution that benefits society in a way that no other relationship does. A strong marriage culture is society’s best means of ensuring the well-being of children. State recognition of marriage protects children by encouraging men and women to commit to each other and take responsibility for their children. While respecting everyone’s liberty, government rightly recognizes, protects, and promotes marriage as the ideal institution for childbearing and childrearing.
Section 377A plays its role here as it acts as the only barrier under the law to prevent the legal faculty from inevitably legitimizing homosexual unions and gay marriages, which will then redefine marriage for our children. This will be detrimental to our society and nation as it will affect us not just physically, but psychologically as well.
3. How does promoting homosexuality affect the society physically?
There are plenty of ill physical effects in promoting homosexuality in a society. Here are two main ones:
1. Despite the fact that the heterosexual community is at least 20 times larger in numbers than the gay community, in 2011, Singapore’s health ministry reveals that the number of homosexual and bisexual men diagnosed with HIV, overtakes that of heterosexual men. (Source: http://www.nuh.com.sg/news/media-articles_2319.html)
PS: Some activists have linked the rise in HIV among homosexuals as the direct result of societal discrimination, but this is another fallacy argument as not only is it non-factual, statistics have also shown rates of HIV infection continues to maintain or increase even in societies where gay culture is strong and where homosexuality has been long decriminalized.
2. A research that focused on countries with long history of gay marriage i.e. Denmark and Norway, showed that married gays and lesbians have a shorter lifespan than their conventionally married counterparts – by 24 years! (Source: http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/archive//ldn/2007/apr/07040309)
Studies have shown that years of smoking shortens the lifespan of the smoker from 1 to 7 years. What justification is there for condemning smoking and endorsing homosexuality?
4. Is the law denying equality to LGBT then if it sanctions against homosexual acts?
This argument has been struck down by Justice Quentin Loh in the high court when he clarified the meaning of EQUALITY in Art 12. Justice Loh rightly explained: “Equality before the law and equal protection of the law under Art 12 (I) DOES NOT MEAN THAT ALL PERSONS ARE TO BE TREATED EQUALLY, but that all persons in like situations are to be treated alike”
This means that when a woman is entitled to 4months of maternity leave and a man is not, it is not because of the lack of EQUALITY, even though the man and woman are treated UNEQUALLY. It is because the situation the man is facing and the situation the woman are not alike because of a fundamental difference between the male and female’s anatomy functions i.e. Females give birth and nurse. Quite naturally, they should be entitled to a longer maternity period than man.
This means that when men are mandated to serve military service and women are not, it does not mean that there is a lack of EQUALITY, even though they are again, treated UNEQUALLY. Again, the situation the man is facing and the situation the woman are not alike. Males are often the physically stronger one. Quite naturally, they play the protector role over females and are hence expected to be the ones called to serve the military first.
We need to explore homosexuality in a bigger societal context and understand the ill effects of promoting it rather than rather than ask to stop the sanctioning of homosexual sex using the equality argument. The situations are not quite alike here because of the ill consequences in promoting homosexuality.
5. But isn’t it everyone’s right to love?
Firstly, the 377A issue isn’t plainly about somebody’s right to love. It is about protecting public health, children’s well-being, the institution of marriage and preventing the erosion of societal mores. In fact, 377A isn’t even about the right to love at all; for everyone has the right of freewill to love whoever, however they want – even if the relationship is detrimental to himself.
Promoting marriage does not ban any type of relationship: Adults are free to make choices about their relationships, and they do not need government sanction or license to do so. Everyone has the freedom to live and love as they choose, but no one has a right to redefine marriage for everyone else.
So 377A issue is never about the right to love, but the right to institutionalize this questionable form of relationship publicly, overtly and subjectively, until it is EQUAL to marriage.
This is something which society should and must never accept.
6. Are gays born that way?
Refer to Q & A on homosexuality
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