Gay in Turkey Has a Essay
- Length: 13 pages
- Sources: 10
- Subject: Women's Issues - Sexuality
- Type: Essay
- Paper: #68516394
Excerpt from Essay :
If they repent and mend their ways, then let them be, and there is no mention of the punishment and the negativity is not so strong and in other cases of deviant behavior from the religion which result in death."
To understand the propensities of the people therefore it is also necessary to observe the orientation of the population and it is claimed that generally Turkish men, as observed by Lynn a. Levine (2010) express more public affection with men rather than with women and today gayness is becoming open. There are local resources in Turkey today for same sex couples. There is also a magazine run exclusively for gays called the Kaos GL.
This shows that the community has finally accepted the gay culture though not on equal terms. Tolerance seems to have crept in for the larger part of Turkey which is now modernized with European contact. There has been a movement within the country with gay organizations coming up in the country. Turkey had its gay organizations begun in the mid 1980s and it had a political origin. Gender identity politics became a cornerstone with the coming of the homosexual movement which caused changes in political relations between parties and personal identities play a very important role in Turkey politics. Thus the emergence of gay politics, or rather gays in politics seem to have turned the tables and the Radical green party (democratic) which included members from various marginalized sections of the society -- and its magazine Yezil Baris gave wide publicity to homosexuality and its existence.
Therefore it is to be recognized that more than religious fervor, the problem is the political necessity to keep down the gay community and the establishment's fear of their organization. One thing that needs to be done by the gays themselves is to organize in a better manner and disseminate knowledge not only of their feelings and needs but also the fact that universally sexual expressions are being seen as human rights. Only by such wide propaganda and a careful watch of human rights violations that occur in countries, especially those countries that are deeply involved in religion can this issue be solved. The cooperation of the public and their tolerance can come about only with dissemination of proper information and representations and solidarity. The advent of groups and the activities that have a political nature have contributed to the government decriminalizing homosexuality which shows that the voices of gays are being heard by the community.
4. Is Turkey becoming a more conservative country regarding gay people or becoming more modern?
It can be shown positively that Turkey is becoming modern in more than one sense. For example while many other Islamic states have not yet recognized the rights of gays, Turkey seems to have gone far ahead in terms of enforcing legal protection. However the people of a country have varied interests and religious bigotry exists in all places. It is so in Turkey, and while the political climate dictated that the government review and change the laws to accommodate the western and particularly European thinking on most issues, including human rights, women's rights and the issue of gays, there has been resistance as shown within the state especially the police and law enforcement establishments, and also by the public and religious powers. These actions have created a panic that the legalization could not wipe out. While the gay activists did manage to get their rights established as per law, the political strategies and Islamism were the boundaries that activists could not cross. Islamist activism that enforced compliance from individuals to the system also made sure that those who do not comply were ostracized. Modernization as far as Turkey is concerned thus intends merely creating a bureaucratic control of all aspects of society and the resulting struggles between the social religious and the elements of modernization.
There have been individual and group actions against gays and hate crimes. These like the death of Ahmet Yildiz, 26, a physics student who represented Turkey at an international gay gathering in San Francisco was shot leaving a cafe near the Bosphorus strait. It is the first gay honor killing. Turkey became a member of the European Union and with that came the notion of rights for minorities such as women and gays. Both were earlier anathemas. Ahmet Yildiz's death was a result of his open statements that he was gay. The government, the Turkish society and the military view homosexuality as a type of "illness"
Thus the army makes sure that males who apply for the army are exempted on grounds of homosexuality which of course requires medical proof. Honor killing is not something to be overlooked. According to the government one person gets killed each week in Istanbul by honor killings." Though Turkey's justice system has tried to stem honor killings, and family honor is no more an extenuating circumstance, this has been got around by using a child relative to carry out the killing! " the reason for the rampant honor killing is the belief that such killings cleanse illicit relationships. While women have no sexual freedom, the male homosexuality is a subject of public ire
Honor killing is a part of the Turkish and of the Islamic culture and in the case of gays this causes threats to their existence it also reaches other communities like women, and those who go against or express opinions against the religion. Therefore while the rights of gays are to be protected there ought to be a ban or some form of legislation to make honor killing murder and not a condonable act. The gay community therefore ought to fight for this -- which will modernize the society to a great extent. Thus though the homophobia in Turkey cannot be ignored, the country is set to legislate on one had in providing freedom to gays while on the other hand some courts seem to be bent on in taking the freedom of the people with the Istanbul court closing down one of the largest gay rights group on the basis that it was "against the law and morality." While that was on one side we also have to consider the fact that in 2008 Istanbul was the host to the biggest Gay Pride parade of the year, the liberals of western Turkey have ensured that some gay groups are free as compared to the other parts of the country.
Thus it can be argued that Turkey is in the process of becoming modern and is struggling with resistance from the rooted belief and prejudices it inherited from the historical past.
5. What is the latest news considering gay people in Turkey?
The position in Turkey can be seen and inferred from the news that flows out of the country. There are newspaper reports which show that the gays seem to be gaining ground in their cause, while at the same time there is also a disturbing side that many gays and transgenders have been the victims of the hate killers. There are specific statements made online, in blogs and writings that relate to the affairs of the gays in Turkey. For example the tourism sector has offered much information for the gay people visiting Turkey which indicates the local gay culture. The information booklets and blogs point out that the gay culture of Turkey is different from those in western countries, and it is claimed that Turkey is the only Muslim country where homosexuality is not illegal.
The denotation of the homosexual as: "ibne" and "oglan." While having simple meanings "faggot" and "oglan" is used to mean "gay." The Turkey-based gays have two sides, and these people won't call themselves gay like bisexuals, and the "passive" ones who behave like women in bed and so on. The society is changing and the adaptation of the English word "gay" into the Turkish society is shown by these agents who promote tourism as the change in the society and its attitude to homosexuals. Istanbul has many attractions and study of the websites show that there is also a "Private Gay Tour Guide for Istanbul."
The killings for homosexual actions are quite rampant. For example on April 11, 2009, Melek K., a transexual, was stabbed to death in Ankara. During 2008, there have been more than ten murders between 10 November 2008, when transsexual Dilek Ince was shot dead in Ankara and another on 19 December 2008. Following that came the killing of transsexual Ebru Soykan- 10 March 2009 and after that the list of the homosexuals killed in Istanbul are as follows: "Yasar Mizrak (44), Mehmet Naci Zeyrek (30), Enes Arici (25) and Ercan Coskun"
all found in a well. They were killed for being gay. On the other hand it is also reported that Istanbul has more transsexuals than elsewhere. While these depressing developments remind that…