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Indonesia is gearing up to potentially ban any LGBTQ characters from appearing on their tv screens.
The country’s Parliament is supposedly working on a broadcasting bill and The Jakarta Post reports that this ban has now been added to that earlier bill.
The terminology used in the new update of the bill states that LGBTQ behavior should not appear in broadcasted programs. This would not only prohibit any new shows from including an LGBTQ character, but any currently running shows (or reruns) with LGBTQ characters would be taken off the air.
But it gets even worse, this doesn’t just include fictional LGBTQ characters, but also LGBTQ people in real life. Now, news channels won’t be allowed to report on members of the LGBTQ community and documentaries can’t depict our issues as well.
As insane as we may think it is to have all of these tv shows screened by a third party censorship bureau, to the majority of Indonesia’s lawmakers it seems reasonable and they said so when speaking to The Post.
Hanafi Rais of the National Mandate Party stated that, “I am sure there are still more creative ways to entertain people [than showing LGBTQ people].”
Supiadin Aries Saputra of the NasDem Party said, “We can’t allow LGBT behaviour on TV. It is against our culture.”
“We have to ban it early before it becomes a lifestyle. It’s dangerous and can ruin the morality of the younger generation.”
Meanwhile, Golkar Party lawmaker Bobby Adhityo Rizaldi added, “People disagree with the LGBT community. We can’t ignore such input from the public.”
While lawmakers prepare to possibly pass the bill, LGBTQ advocacy groups are speaking out against it and state that this is clearly the government overreaching with their power and blatantly trying to thwart the LGBTQ movement.
Keep in mind, in the majority of Indonesia it is legal to be gay besides in the providence of Aceh where Islamic law is still practiced.