In an attempt to placate the controversy around America’s most gay-friendly Ivy League university opening a campus in a state where homosexuality is illegal, Yale hosted a lecture about the gay rights movement in Singapore on Wednesday.
National University of Singapore (NUS) law professor Lynette Chua gave the lecture which was based on research interviewing 100 Singaporean gay rights activists.
Chua said that to survive in the conservative political climate of Singapore gay rights activists have had to ‘employ non-confrontational tactics,’ Yale Daily News reports.
Chua discussed the 2010 Tan Eng Hong case which challenged the constitutionality of Section 377A of Singapore’s penal code that criminalizes homosexual acts (a relic from British colonial rule). She said that although the law remains in place, the fact that MPs discussed the issue was a victory.
‘The shifting attitude – from the police raiding gay bars only decades ago to the government acknowledging the presence of gay people in Singapore – is a step forward for the gay rights movement,’ said Chua.
The resolution, which stated ‘concern regarding the history of lack of respect for civil and political rights in the state of Singapore’ was symbolic as admissions have already opened for the the Yale-NUS College in the Southeast Asian city-state.