Gay Crackdown In China?

There may be more reason to protest the Beijing-hosted Olympic games. Former government official and gay activist Dr. Wan Yanhai claims the government has launched a homophobic crackdown ahead of the athletic festivities. And he’s not the only one:

In his email about the new anti-gay crackdown, Wan detailed several of the police raids. They began on March 9 when police invaded Destination, Beijing’s most popular gay nightspot.

A foreigner residing in Beijing who had spoken to a number of Chinese gays said by telephone, “The authorities have begun this so-called clean-up to signal to Chinese gays that they better be really discreet and invisible during the Beijing Olympics. The government is very suspicious of anyone or anything that they do not consider normal or in keeping with official standards for correct conduct…”

The move would be especially queer considering the government’s recent push to incorporate men who have sex with men into their HIV/AIDS campaigns.

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  • Mattias

    Just another example of the PRC not understanding the outside world… with the influx of international visitors that the Olypmics will bring, the gay visitors will want to explore Beijing’s gay nightlife. If they find that it’s been clamped down on because of the visit, it’ll just piss off the international community even more. The PRC is so hell-bent on saving face and portraying some ideal vision to the world with the Olympics but they really just have the opposite ideas of what constitute face than the rest of the world.

  • Mike

    Screw them, and screw their olympics. I hope they turn out to be the most un-watched, embarrassing olympics since Hitler.

  • kevin57

    Whenever control freaks stop taking their reality “meds” (be it there or our religious lunes here), it always backfires.

  • PalePhoenix

    More reason? Gee, isn’t their rolling Deathmobile enough? I mean, seriously, blowing out the Torch is about as symbolic as the flame itself, but do we really need another rousing chorus of “First, they came for the Tibetans/monks/writers…then there was no one left to speak for me?”

    To put it bluntly, why wait for a “gay” reason to disdain either the Chinese government or this year’s gaggle of athletic child stars? Feel free to cluck your tongue at them NOW.

  • hells kitchen guy

    Robert Wagner did the same thing with 1964 World’s Fair in New York City. He closed all the gay bars.

  • John

    The Communists are just the latest despots in a long line of authoritarian rulers. Like Russia, China doesn’t seem to work well under a democracy.

    The Chinese people need a tyrant to boss them around (the alternative seems to be long periods of instability and civil war). That’s why strongmen like Qin Shi Huang is so highly admired in China. Even if the CPC is removed from power, it’ll probably only mean the rise of another dictatorship.

    And this is the government that banned Lonely Planet’s China guidebook because one of the maps showed Taiwan in (gasp, the horror) a different color. I expect nothing good from them, and I’m rarely dissapointed.

  • Nick

    I lived in Beijing for several years and the threat of Destination getting raided or shut down was always there. It was shut down by the authorities one night as my friends and I were on the way in. It’s all a facade anyways, they shut the place down to look like they’re doing something, but the place stays open and people keep coming back.

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