Tomomi Inada’s uphill battle to ‘promote understanding’ of LGBT issues in Japan

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03/21/2019

Tomomi Inada isn’t trying to get Japan to legalize same-sex marriage or ban discrimination against gay citizens. The conservative lawmaker just wants to “promote understanding” of LGBT issues. Even that seems too much. The former defense minister said she’s unsure she’ll be able to introduce new legislation seeking greater tolerance of same-sex relationships amid opposition from her Liberal Democratic Party colleagues. Members of the ruling party have publicly opposed calls for change in recent months, some warning it would slow the already anemic birth rate. “People asked me if I’d turned left-wing,” said Inada, an LDP executive and an adviser to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. “It’s a tough situation for me, but I think it’s a human rights issue and nothing to do with being conservative or liberal.”

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