Gay sex is still a crime in Singapore, but the fight continues

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After Singapore’s Supreme Court decided to maintain a law that criminalizes homosexual sex, the process to appeal the ruling began with a campaign aimed to raise $50,000.

The so called law, S377A, forbids one male from committing an “act of gross indecency” with another male, with a potential penalty of up to two years imprisonment.

Last week, Justice Loh concluded that the law must stand for fear of “upsetting conservative elements in the Singaporean Parliament.” 

Without losing any confidence, the plaintiffs in the case, Gary Lim and Kenneth Chee, argued that the law is unconstitutional because it limits the freedoms of a specific group. 

“We are disappointed that the High Court ruled against us and upheld S377A,” the pair said. “Having been together for 15 years, it is disheartening that we are criminals in the eyes of the law because of a segment of society that will not live and let live, but insist on pushing their version of religion and morality on us.”

The lawyers for Gary Lim and Kenneth Chee launched a digital fundraising campaign through Indiegogo and managed to raise $54,000, smashing their $50,000 goal. Crowdfunding has emerged organically in Singapore in recent months as a viable way for entrepreneurs, artists, and now activists to raise substantial sums of money to fund their projects. The deadline is still two months away.

Now the appeal process begins. One of the lawyers representing Gary Lim and Kenneth Chee, Remy Choo Zheng Xi, told 429Magazine that, “I’ve been getting a lot of questions about what I think about the S377A Judgment. It will be endlessly parsed (and, likely appealed) in the next few days, so I don’t want to go into too much detail about how incorrect I think it is. For now, Ted Kennedy’s concession speech at the 1980 DNC comes to mind. I’m quite confident that, in the larger scheme of things, we’re standing on the right side of history.”

429Magazine

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