Singapore’s Slow but Steady Path Toward Decriminalizing Homosexuality


Singapore’s strict legislation is often cited as one the city-state’s defining characteristics. Talks about the country’s most stringent laws, from the infamous ban on chewing gum to the enforcement of death penalty for drug use, frequently drive foreign perceptions of Singapore, fueled by the legacy of Michael Fay in the United States. However, for many other lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) locals and expatriates in the Lion City, the most controversial legislation is that concerning homosexuality. A remnant of British colonial legislation, which still largely shapes Singapore’s legal system today, Section 377A of the Singapore Penal Code, which prohibits sexual relations between consenting men in public and in private, particularly stands out in this regard.

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