Sex, lies and heated debate: Taiwan prepares to vote in gay marriage referendum


Taiwan is in the final days of a battle over the future of equality in the country, with conservatives campaigning fiercely against LGBT advocates over a referendum on same-sex marriage on Saturday.  As voting day nears, conservative groups have deployed a reported budget of 100m Taiwan dollars (£2.5m) in an effort to push the definition of marriage as between a man and a woman only. The group Alliance for Next Generation’s Happiness, which gathered enough signatures to trigger the referendum, voiced fears for society, with spokesman Tseng Hsien-ying saying: “The collapse of the family system will deal a huge blow to society.” Advertisements have blanketed Taiwan’s airwaves and newspapers. Misinformation has spread on social media, with same-sex marriage opponents claiming marriage equality would affect the island’s falling birthrate and make it a haven for foreigners with HIV who seek to use the national health system.

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