Malaysian newspaper publishes 'how to spot a gay' checklist
Published : Monday, 12 February, 2018 at 7:04 PM Count : 190
A leading Malaysian newspaper has published a list of pointers for identifying potential gay and lesbian people, drawing anger from activists who said lives were being put at risk.
The article in Sinar Harian featured bullet points of supposedly distinctive qualities that revealed LGBT people. They stated that gay men were easy to identify because of their love of beards, going to the gym – not for exercise but to check out other men – and branded clothing. Their eyes light up when they see handsome men, the article said.
The stand-out attributes for lesbians were that they tend to hug each other, hold hands and belittle men, according to the newspaper.
Homosexuality is illegal in Malaysia and punishable under a colonial-era sodomy law that carries a 20-year prison sentence.
Homophobic rhetoric is also evident even in government discourse. The country’s deputy interior minister attacked Walt Disney last year at the request of the Malaysian censorship board, and a Malaysian health ministry youth video competition called for .
Another article on the health ministry’s website, entitled “Why would a person be lesbian?”, states that potential causes of women being gay were their decisions to prioritise their careers and believing other women were the only ones who would understand.