After ten members of the National Assembly presented a bill that would eliminate criminal penalties for sex between homosexuals in the military, the protest online was harsh and unanimous. Critics claimed that the South Korea military, which has been the scene of infamous physical abuse in recent years, will now become even more dangerous as gay senior officers are able to take advantage of new recruits.
Some netizens accused the lawmakers of using the issue to score political points. Notably, the ten sponsors of the law included representatives from all of the major opposition parties but no members of the ruling Saenuri Party.
Article from Newsis:
Proposal to Remove Military Code that “Punishes Homosexual Sexual Activity”
On March 21st, it was confirmed that lawmakers in the National Assembly had proposed eliminating the military law code specifying criminal penalties for homosexual acts.
Masked protesters criticize the law punishing gays in the military.
Jin Seon-mi, a National Assembly Member and member of the Democratic Party, along with ten other members opposition parties, proposed removing clause 6 of article 96 of the military law code that states, “any soldier, military employee, reservist, or conscript on alternative duty who commits sodomy or otherwise molests a fellow soldier shall be punished with up to two years’ incarceration.”
Jin and her fellow lawmakers explained, “under the current military law code, there is no punishment for engaging in typical [heterosexual] sexual acts, so long as they are not forced or in a public space. However, clause 6 of article 9 punishes homosexual sexual activity even if it is consensual and private…in cases where soldiers have disrupted military sexual discipline, applying criminal punishment of two years’ incarceration only if the participants are homosexuals seems to violate constitutional principles of fairness.”
The lawmakers went on to state that, “Even in Korea, our respect for individualism and sexual openness has led to many changes in our citizen’s preference for how the law should treat sexual activity. Our society is slowly progressing beyond the belief that homosexual sexual activity is abnormal or severely violates our sexual morals…we have recognized that discrimination based on someone’s sexual preference in hiring or elsewhere violates principles of equality, leading us to recommend that the law be changed to reflect changes in our society.
Koreans protest against the anti-sodomy law in the middle of Seoul
The sponsors of the law include Kim Kwang-jin, Bae Jae-yeong, Eun Su-mi, Jang Ha-na, and Jin Seon-mi from the Democratic Party, along with Kim Jae-yeon and Lee Sang-kyu of the Unified Progressive and Kim Jae-nam, Park Weon-seok, and Jeong Jin-woo from the Justice Party.
On the day before the presentation of the bill, Assembly Member Kim Kwang-jin stated on his Twitter, “due to preparations for the bill eliminating the criminal penalties in clause 6 of article 92 of the military law code, our office today was deluged with phone calls in protest, so many that we couldn’t get anything done except answer the phones…in a better world, those sponsoring this bill would receive more calls of support than calls of protest.”
Comments from Daum:
불편한진실: So now do you all understand why the Democratic Party is so unpopular? When our military is already filled with stories of physical abuse, you want new recruits to become fresh meat for all of those gay bastards?
엘란: I’m not so sure about this… Why are they only trying to do things that will make them lose votes.. Homosexual acts aren’t exactly natural, right?
xuthgxyrwyc: They push aside the laws they should be focusing on, and this is what they are spending their time sitting around talking about? So if someone is just doing that kind of weird thing in the army, are you supposed to just stand by silently? Ugh, makes me want to spit.
danbee: Hey you dumb-ass Democratic Party lawmakers, are you going to make our soldiers’ assholes burn?
Qlfhd: Hey DP, don’t you know this is the kind of thing that costs you votes… Why would there be intercourse in the military? Do you think that the barracks is looking forward to that?
시크시코: Wait, what? This seems dangerous…
개자추: I’m anti-reform!!!!
픽팍폭: I’m better off since I don’t have a son… still, this isn’t good. The military is a hierarchical organization, so if someone is a homosexual wouldn’t they be able to impose that on their junior soldiers? You are trampling the human rights of normal people in order to protect the rights of weirdos. I would like to start a petition to get these ten idiots to resign. This isn’t why I pay taxes. Remember what they have done and keep it in mind the next time you go to vote. The rights of the minority are important, but it is wrong to toss out the rights of the majority..
빅뱅힉스: In the army? This will mean the end of discipline..
발샘: No matter how I look at it, I don’t understand how homosexual groups in the military can maintain discipline or how such an organization could win a war. I don’t agree with this…
큰바위: Won’t there also be divine punishment if we make anal sex normal?
새봄: What bullshit from these bitches and bastards… Then send your damn kids to do it.. Then I won’t complain.
이정범: Hey assholes… Then send your little whelps to the military!! You filthy pro-Japanese bastards!!!
55세은퇴목표: I will have to be careful when I send my son to the military..
현명한여자: Faggots are going to like this article.
BOSS: I have no idea what these people were thinking. Use your time to figure out how to make women serve in the military as enlisted soldiers just like men.
Source: Newsis and Daum via koreaBANG