Is tolerance towards homosexuality a purely Western issue? – Why not “look east” in this case, too?

  • Harrie Esterhuyse


Gay rights have lately received much media coverage. In the United States, President Obama became the first sitting US president to give his public support for gay marriage. The US and United Kingdom have also in recent months begun to stop government funding to countries that have anti-gay legislation, leaving some African state budgets, such as Malawi‘s, in shambles. In many countries such as the Netherlands, Canada, Portugal, Argentina and South Africa full marriage rights have been extended to same sex couples. In many other countries such as the UK, Germany, some US states and Austria, same-sex couples are able to enter into civil unions. Thus the pro-gay movement is increasing in strength around the world: except, it seems, for wider Africa. Is this the smartest move for the developing economies of Africa? Maybe learning from China in this case is not too bad an idea?