China’s Gays Live Well – But Quietly – Under Communism

Time magazine spends some time this week looking at gay life in Communist China: a delicate balance, to be sure:

There’s never been a better time to be gay in China, but as [gay club] Destination’s somewhat schizophrenic combination of outer reserve and inner exuberance demonstrates, it still pays to be careful. Beijing’s attitude has been described as a Triple No policy: no approval, no disapproval, no promotion. That hands off approach – a sort of commercial don’t ask, don’t tell policy – is emblematic of the delicacy with which the Communist regime is learning to deal with many of the issues concerning personal liberties that are increasingly being raised by its burgeoning middle class.

For their part, homosexuals in China seem perfectly happy to pursue their lives within the broad boundaries allowed by the government, albeit not without the occasional snipe at the authorities. It’s no coincidence, for example, that the once ubiquitous term tongzhi – comrade – is now only heard as a slang term among young Chinese for gay men.

Despite the limited limitations, gay activists and citizens claim things are getting “freer and freer” with the passage of time. They’ll be ruling the world in no time!