Thousands of Chinese activists renew push for same-sex marriage

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BEIJING – Chinese activists are rallying in the thousands to renew a push for same-sex marriage, making use of a rare window of opportunity to suggest revisions to a draft piece of legislation to include legal protections for the gay community.

After decades of Communist prudery about sex of all kinds, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Chinese have in recent years been openly tackling bureaucracy, legal uncertainty and entrenched social norms to assert their place in society.

But unlike neighboring, democratic Taiwan, whose decision last year to give same-sex couples the right to marry gave a boost to the gay rights movement across Asia, China has not budged.

Two years after a Chinese court rejected his application to be legally married, Sun Wenlin is trying to galvanize the LGBTQ community by asking people to propose amendments to a draft civil code en masse.

The code, a piece of landmark legislation expected to be passed in 2020, was released last week by China’s parliament for two months of public comment.

The code makes changes on issues including sexual harassment, divorce and family planning, but does not further the rights of the LGBTQ community, Sun told Reuters.

Earlier this week, Sun posted on his WeChat account a guide for how to submit revisions to write the legalization for same-sex marriage into the code.

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