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Draft 4/Issue 1
[VIEWPOINT]
YOU LOVE WHO YOU LOVE
BY MARIE PARK

Citizens participate in a pride parade campaigning for LGBT rights.

The streets of Taipei City, Taiwan burst with vibrant energy and bustling crowds.
More than 30,000 people took part in this years Taiwan Pride, an annual gay rights
parade, making it the largest gay rights event in all of Asia, according to Taiwan
Today.
Though being a fellow Asian country, Korea, because of its traditional views, tends to
be more narrow-minded about homosexuality.
What is the reason for such controversy? Homosexuality is seen as a more modern
concept, and can disagree with Koreas more traditional culture. It goes against the
familial bonds included in Confucian beliefs. In addition, homosexuality also goes
against Christian beliefs of one not [lying] with a male as with a woman, as
mentioned in the book of Leviticus in the Bible.
There is nothing wrong with upholding tradition and preserving culture. At the same
time, one should not immediately deem an untraditional thought as wrong. If one
thinks that a woman should be able to tell the difference of the types of forks or wear
a full-length gown to show the beauty a woman should possess, he is more than
welcome to think so. He should not, however, look down upon women who wear
jeans because they go against his idea of grace.
In the same way, people should embrace their traditions, but open their mind to
contemporary ideas around them.

For example, Confucian teachings emphasize men being authoritarian in a household,


but Koreans accepted the newer ideas of women also having power to allow a more
modern lifestyle.
Similarly, Christians long ago have accepted the idea of wearing clothes made of
more than one material to church, something that was advised against doing so in the
Bible.
Wrapped up in their prejudices about homosexuals, people seem to forget that LGBT
individuals are humans like everyone else. The negative views towards homosexuality
in Korea need to dissipate and take on a more liberal perspective, as expressed in
Taiwan.
The main problem here is the refusal to compromise traditional views with
homosexuality. The key solution is to let them understand that homosexuality is not
detrimental to our society.
Since a majority of the citizens of Korea have interest in the media, popular
celebrities should show support for homosexuality to open the publics mind. Emma
Watsons HeForShe speech for the United Nations about feminism changed many
peoples outlook on feminism, and the same thing can happen with homosexuality.
Through exposure of this sort, gay can have its unfavorable meaning replaced with
a more pleasant one.
Also, celebrity support could highlight the modernization that Korea has gone
through, since most TV shows slip from traditional guidelines more than they used to,
and people still enjoy them.
By giving homosexuality a more welcome view to the public, traditional minds could
soften their stance and embrace the idea more easily.
Koreans have a great sense of national pride. They sympathize for national tragedies
as if they have lost their own family. They hold their breath as Yuna Kim dances
across the ice and yell out encouragements to their TVs as Taehwan Park swims his
final lap. Its time for Korea to see that, really, gay pride isnt that different from
national pride. Korea is uniquely qualified to understand that it is worthwhile to come
together and be proud of true identity.