Gay wedding goes ahead in China despite official hindrance

Lu Zhong and Liu Wangqiang have become the first gay couple to publicly say ‘I do’ in the southeastern Chinese province of Fujian

Gay wedding goes ahead in China despite official hindrance
04 October 2012

China’s Fujian province has seen its first ever public gay wedding between two young men, who had already made history by getting engaged in nearby Guangdong province.

Lu Zhong and Liu Wangqiang, 24 and 20 respectively, wowed their hometown of Ningde on Tuesday (2 Oct), a day after the national day, as their cascade of wedding cars paraded the city’s roads and parks and showcased their love.

With the newly-weds attracting as many as 1000 onlookers, according to the West Strait Morning Post, Liu Hua-sheng, a well-wishing taxi driver, described the scene as being ‘grander than the Chinese New Year.’

The evening climaxed when Lu and Liu, clad in black-and-white wedding suits, kissed each other on the lips.

In China where same-sex marriage is not legally recognized and homosexuality often frowned at, Lu and Liu’s love has been nothing short of high-profile for the public.

In August, they became the first gay couple to get engaged publicly in Dongguan, Guangdong, before moving on to shoot wedding photos across Quanzhou, Fujian.

Shortly after Monday passed, Lu posted a message on Weibo, the Chinese Twitter: ‘It’s 2 Oct and we are getting married, facing blessing as well as criticism. Still, we stand tough. Today is our big day! Bless us!’

Lu told Gay Star News they were not being illustrious at all, as they were simply following ordinary wedding customs.

While society was supportive at large, he said the government was not. ‘Government officials exerted pressure on different hotels, while the Public Security Bureau went about in karaoke boxes telling people to seize us,’ he explained. ‘They even sent ruffians to look for us.’

It was the help of a karaoke box owner that helped the wedding went along smoothly, largely uninterrupted by ruffians with clubs.

Around sixty friends travelled all the way from different parts of the country to witness Lu and Liu’s wedding ceremony, joining the couple’s family members.

‘I learnt about my brother’s (sexual orientation) seven, eight years ago,’ said Lu’s elder sister. ‘I hold nothing against his choice, but I don’t quite agree with his public exposure.’

Also present was Lu’s middle school class teacher Mr Lin, who expressed his understanding and wished them happy.

Liu’s 78-year-old grandma did not attend the wedding, saying it is hard to understand his way of handling things.

Liu’s father, meanwhile, acted as a middleman. ‘I had once thought of disowning this son, but I couldn’t stand firm in the end,’ he said. ‘Still, I asked Wangqiang’s granny not to get into his way and just let him be.’

Lu has told the local media that he would like to hold China’s first large-scale public gay wedding, partly in a bid to get more sponsorship and make it an impeccable one that they would otherwise be unable to afford.

Lu’s family is now helping to build a house for the couple in Zherong county, where the newly-weds plan to settle down, ideally running a barroom and leading a stable life together.

Asked earlier if they want to have kids, Lu said: ‘We’ve thought about that, but it’s not really possible right now. Our careers are still fledging. Maybe we will.

‘Someone from Guangzhou is willing to help us bear kids.’

Below are pictures of the wedding and some pre-wedding photos (Courtesy of Lu and Liu, and Fadie Photo)

To get a sense of what the wedding was like, watch the video below:

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