4 Oct 2017

Conservative Chinese Campaign Against Same-sex Marriage in Australia

Reports suggest Chinese in Australia are uncharacteristically engaging in the nation's politics, with older Chinese especially campaigning for a 'no' vote in marriage poll.

Reaction to Australia's controversial ballot on marriage equality among the Chinese community in the country has been overwhelmingly strong, and polarized, according to the Global Times.

Advertisements, leaflets, and online campaigning against gay marriage in Chinese have been rising following the Australian government's launch of a national survey on same-sex marriage, which began collecting votes on September 12.

The survey only has one question: "Should Australian law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry," with only two options: "Yes" or "No." 

The Global Times reports leaflets handed out at University campuses including one colorful flyer with a large cartoon drawing of two men kissing, with  "Homosexuality is a deadly curse declared by God" in Chinese at the top. 

On Chinese social media network, We Chat, a message widely shared read: "Emergency, please share this with others! The fate of Australia and our next generation is in your hands! Vote against legalizing same-sex marriage because it's a death spell that will leave you sonless, and the origin that creates and spreads AIDS."

A Chinese Presbyterian church in Australia also hosted a sermon specifically on the matter.

A Sydney-based Chinese paediatrician and founder of Australian Chinese for Families Association named Pansy Lai has appeared in a video advertisement paid for by Coalition for Marriage as one of three concerned mothers calling on people to vote no in the survey, leading to a petition calling for her medical license to be revoked.

The Global Times reports that although younger generations of Chinese in Australia may not sure their views of older members of the community, they are not often in a position to defy their parents or elders.