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Hungarian Politicos Debating Gay Rights

budapest.jpg
There may soon be some happy happy homos in Hungary. The government’s currently debating the next step for gay rights legislation. Left-leaning politicos are reportedly holding talks on how to bring gay citizens into the cultural and social fray. Right-wing leaders, however, are vowing to oppose any measure, which comes after last week’s Parliamentary committee voted not to hear the marriage matter. 365Gay delves deep:

Hungary’s left-of-center coalition government is reportedly considering legislation that would give limited rights to same-sex couples.

[Free Democratic Party] member Peter Gusztos said denying property and inheritance rights to same-sex couples was discriminatory. A member of a Budapest LGBT rights group compared laws limiting rights to opposite-sex married couples to the country’s anti-Jewish laws of the latek 1930s.

The majority Socialist Party said that society is not yet ready for such a step and pointed to a recent court ruling that upheld the current law.

What prompted the change in attitude by the government is not known, but the country has been prodded by the European Union to recognize gay and lesbian relationships.

And when the EU prods, small, post-socialist states listen. They don’t always do the right thing, but they listen…

By:           Andrew Belonksy
On:           Nov 12, 2007
Tagged: , , , ,
  • 2 Comments
    • Rick
      Rick

      I lived in Hungary for about half a year and I found myself rather uncomfortable living in the country. Not so much that I was gay…but that I was treated like such a foreigner by Hungarians. It rattled my brain as to why some (older) Hungarians behave or think as they do. As a young person, I was comforted by the fact that some of the younger generations are really embracing the ideas of diversity and equality. And yes, the tend to support the current PM. However I also met some college students who are conservative, bigoted, and ignorant. They hated the PM and his government and couldn’t grasp the fact that men can have healthy loving/sexual relations with one another. I had a discussion with other American students on this and we thought Hungary had a long way to go and that they should continue to listen, especially to their fellow EU family members.

      Nov 13, 2007 at 3:06 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jane
      Jane

      As a Hungarian lesbian having lived both in Hungary and the southern United States, I read your article and the response with mixed feelings about this article. As both a lifelong liberal and child of liberals, I am embarrassed by the presence of ultra right-wing sentiment in my country. However, I must say that these people certainly don’t single out the gay community for their hatred. Foreigners, Jews, Roma, and liberals of all stripes get an equal time being hated by these people.

      Of course, since this entry was posted, our civil union law has been passed and Hungarian same-sex couples may enter into unions that grant them nearly all the rights that married couples have. I don’t see the United States coming up with such legislation any time in the near future — we’ll see what the next administration does about it. Because of the civil union legislation and its impact on immigration rights, I and my American partner will be in a better position living in Hungary than we currently are in the United States.

      With all due respect, as long as the West keeps talking down to us and dubbing us “small, post-socialist states”, anti-Western sentiments will continue to thrive there. As embarrassing as they are to me, to some extent I believe that the West needs to meet us halfway in the middle if we are ever to experience dialogue and mutual respect.

      Mar 26, 2008 at 1:55 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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