Crowds of thousands showed up on the hot and humid afternoon, carrying pink signboards and waving rainbow flags in support of the city state’s queer rights movement.
Among the crowd were the members of parliament Henry Kwek, from the ruling People’s Action Party, and Jamus Lim from the opposition Workers’ パーティー.
Gay sex in Singapore remains illegal even if it is consensual, between adults, and takes place in private. But societal attitudes, while still largely conservative, are changing, activists say and the government is now “considering the best way forward” on whether to change the law, which has been in place since Singapore was a British colony more than 60 数年前.
“Policies need to evolve to keep abreast of such changes in views. And legislation needs to evolve to support updated policies,” said Singaporean law and home affairs minister K Shanmugam in a recent parliament session.
“And if and when we decide to move, we will do so in a way that continues to balance between these different viewpoints, and avoids causing a sudden, destabilising change in social norms and public expectations.”
先週, the Disney Pixar film Lightyear was given an NC16 rating in Singapore, prohibiting children under the age of 16 from watching the movie in cinemas because of a controversial scene depicting a same-sex relationship.
Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority said that the animated film was inappropriate for young viewers due to “overt homosexual depictions”.
“We don’t have respect and equality, no matter what our pledge and the government says — and that’s why it’s important to stage Pink Dot every year,” said Nizam Razak, a 36-year-old gay man at Pink Dot. “Why can’t our children see a lesbian kiss? Already as it as, we are being erased in society here in so many aspects and this isn’t okay.”
“When will things really get better for us in the gay community? It’s hard to say.”
Organizers said the turnout was larger than previous years and they hoped to keep the momentum going for next year.
“The planning was a little rushed but at the end of the day, we made it. We brought thousands together in support of our cause for queer rights and pride in Singapore and that was the goal,” a representative said.
For first time attendees like Dawn Lim, the Pink Dot experience “didn’t feel like being in Singapore”. “This park, this sea of pink — it really was a safe space and I’m glad I got to experience what it’s like,” リムは言った.
“For one day a year, I get to feel human and free to be myself without fear or judgment from people and when I leave Hong Lim Park tonight, I’ll just go home, and go back to my hidden life.”