CHINA

China Bans Online Videos Showing Homosexuality

Jul 12, 2017 at 3:36 PM ET

Chinese authorities announced last month that audio-visual content showing any “display of homosexuality” would be prohibited and removed from China’s video platforms.

The decision, which was made on June 30, was met with online outrage by LGBTQ advocates in China. The China Gay Voice recalled how homosexuality was removed from China’s list of mental illnesses in 2001, and said that the new decision would bring harm and discrimination upon innocent gay people.

But the most surprising pro-gay voice came from within the Communist Party apparatus, specifically the Fujian Province Communist Youth League, which went on Weibo and encouraged followers to avoid homophobic-based discrimination. So far, the post has received 70,000 likes, 30,000 comments and 20,000 shares, and has received a designated hashtag (#同性恋不是精神疾病#).

While homosexuality is not illegal in China, government officials are often criticized for treating gays as a threat to the culture. Last year, the nation even began banning depictions of gay people on TV. Knowing this, it makes the response by a local Communist Party Youth League all the more courageous.