Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Homosexuality is criminal: A note of thanks to the SC!

My open letter of gratitude to the S.Court of India after it upheld that gay sex would continue to be a criminal act in India.

Dear SC of India,
 You have just reasserted that all the people who have sex with people of their own sex are criminals. And, I am just so happy and proud of you! Here, see  the big three reasons below:

courtesy: rude creativity
1. You slapped/woke me up from a day dream!:  Last Tuesday, at this time, I was in Bangkok, taking part in the Global Forum on Media and Gender. I met Michal - a woman from Tel Aviv who fights discrimination and maltreatment of  LGBT (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender) people in her country and her region. Over coffee, I proudly told her "Homosexuality was a legally criminal offense in India, but then our court decriminalized it." She was very happy to hear that. In fact her exact words were "I think India is a good democracy!". Well, dear SC, thank you for waking me up and telling me that we still suck when it comes to treating every citizen equally regardless of his/her sexual orientation.

2. For letting me know the top court can play politics! : I always thought that the top court of India was well above politics, like the constitution asks it to be. But today, you make me believe otherwise. Come to think of it: when one Court of Delhi said in 2009 that the  Section 377 of Indian Penal Code - provision in the constitution that criminalized gay sex was draconian and had to go, our leaders had reportedly pretty much accepted it. 

But today, just when we are a few months away from a (presumably) very chaotic general election, you are adding to the chaos, putting the ball in the court of the parliament and saying that its the parliament that can decide on a law. It seems to me that you do love playing politics as well. 

The thing is, there are just a few months left before the current government's term ends, which means, there isn't enough time for the govt to act on the issue. This again means, the blame sits on the government's shoulder, not you. Yes, you can play ball, can't you?

3. For telling us how we can be minimalists : Dear SC, in global forums, our government argues with the world leaders that we Indians have a right to growth. The truth is, in our daily life, we rather follow the principle of  living with the minimum. We manage with little security, limited  resources, few jobs. Personally, women like me even manage to live with limited amount of freedom to move, to wear, to meet/socialize and so on. Now, it seems to me that with your today's verdict you are trying to teach us how to live without the basic rights as a human being. So, I thank you for letting me be the extreme minimalist!

Finally, dear SC, it seems to me that you are ushering in a new social and political order for us. For example, I bet that the Taliban will be very happy when they know that India is reinstating laws that curbs the human rights and all that shit. Also, we could become the "most favored nation" of all the homophobic countries across the world! How great would that be!

Oh, and, you know Nelson Mandela just passed away. India announced five days' of national mourning over that. Now, Mandela was a icon of the LGBT rights movement worldwide who,  spoke out about homophobia numerous times and helped make South Africa the first African nation to enshrine LGBT rights into the Country’s constitution

The man is yet to be buried, but you, you, SC, have already showed how to bury the very ideology of freedom he practiced, even as we  are in mourning. That's the most brilliant way to show, how, as a nation, we could practice hypocrisy! Thank you judges for that!

Please have a good evening! I know you will, after all, you have thousands of cases to sift through every year. Today's was just one of them and you can't care much about that, can you?


kodaifern said...

The whole issue of health and sexual health is also right out of the window... thanks SC for showing your empathy for those victims as well!Hope the UN can be intimated by your honorable courts too... that people afflicted and sexual health is low priority for our court. Ring in the extremist right wingers and celebrate this terrible judgement. Oh and keep your children safe from the others... after one has ot preserve Indian culture at any cost..from self expression.

Stella Paul said...

@Kodaifem : Agree. After the HC verdict, UNAIDS had come out lauding the verdict, saying how it would help better fight HIV/AIDS. Wonder how let down they feel now. Its been a painstaking journey for those who are educating on HIV/AIDS, especially those peer educators within the community. This is a big slap on their wrist!