People Around The World Reveal What Would Happen If Someone Said "I'm Gay" In Their Country.

People Around The World Reveal What Would Happen If Someone Said "I'm Gay" In Their Country.

Around the world, LGB rights are slowly inching (or in some case hurdling) toward equality. From country to country, and sometimes even within a country, attitudes towards non-heterosexual relationships can scale from "Okay, so your point is...?" to prison, or even immediate death. Here, people from fifteen different countries worldwide shared what would happen if you were to say, "I'm gay" in their country.

1. Ireland

Northern Ireland is fairly accepting of gay people in general (although gay marriage isn't legal - even though it won a majority vote in 2015), but it certainly won't win any prizes for its acceptance of gay people.

I mean, nothing's really going to happen. You won't be killed. You might risk being kicked out of your house if you live with your parents, or severing ties with family and/or friends. Definitely, people will be less comfortable with being friends with you and you'll get more than a few looks and whispered comments. Be very prepared to be called a mean name.

In terms of your overall safety, you're pretty much fine.

However, I'm a teenager, and while a lot of adults I know are homophobic, most of my peers are pretty liberal on the matter, so hopefully the next generation won't care as much and we might finally get gay marriage legalised.

Kate Monaghan

2. The UK

Being gay is pretty unremarkable. I mean its just who you fancy. Most common responses:


From somebody who doesnt really care. A vast majority of the population.

OkaySo what do you want to drink?

Meaning I dont care, thats a bit weird that youd mention it, we should solve this slight pause with a drink.

Yeah, I know

I mean its usually not a surprise. From my experience, anyway. I cant remember ever being surprised.

What you do between the sheets, mate, none of my business

Someone who doesnt want to know. They may even be against homosexuality in private but theyll not say it to your face. This is a minority opinion in the UK, and hopefully won't be there at all soon.

James Pain

3. Azerbaijan

Lesbian, gay, bisexuals, and transgender (LGBT) persons in Azerbaijan may face legal challenges not experienced by non-LGBT residents. Same-sex sexual activity for both men and women is legal in Azerbaijan, but households headed by same-sex couples are not eligible for the same legal protections available to heterosexual couples.

So, officially gays have same rights as heterosexuals. In reality, they don't.

Parents: It is more common for a father to express shock. Most probably he will act angrily first. Afterwards he will not talk with you. You will be ignored by him. Your mother will be a little more supportive than your father but still she also will feel shocked. Most probably your family will not force you to leave the home. Your brother will not talk and will not take you in serious. Sisters as always will try to understand you. This is a generalization, of course, but seems to be what happens based on gender roles here.

Friends: Friendship is one of the holy words in Azerbaijan. Your best friend will probably feel shocked, furious. Afterwards he will tell you not to tell anyone. I am talking about only true friends. Mates/colleagues: Some will ridicule you and some will try to avoid talking with you. Some of them will call you Dutch. In Azerbaijan, Netherlands is perceived as a paradise of gays.

Society: Majority of people definitely will not like you and everyone will try to avoid talking with you. You will be ignored. But some exceptions may exist. Some fraction of Azerbaijani society is (Continued)

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very open minded. Those people will come towards you and will try to support you. Some ultra-conservative people may attack you, especially in rural areas. So, it would not be 100% safe to say I am gay in society. In Azerbaijan homosexuality is not brand new. Some celebrities and governmental officials are gay and most of the people know it.


4. Canada

This is the Prime Minister of Canada. Earlier this year, Justin Trudeau raised a gay pride flag in our Parliament Hill.

Gay marriages have been legal here since July, 2005. Same sex adoptions are legal here. Transgender reassignment surgeries are covered by healthcare. If you told me that you were gay, Id give you a high five.

Our current Prime Ministers father, when HE was Justice Minister (before becoming Prime Minister) made Canada one of the first Western Nations to legalize Homosexuality itself; before that, consensual sodomy was a criminal offence. "The State has no business in the bedrooms of nation" is a famous quote to remember.

Canada is not without its flaws, but I am so very proud to call it home.


5. India

I remember our English teacher teaching us a peom called Daffodils by William Wordsworth. It's one of my favourite poems. One of the stanza in the poems reads -says:

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazedand gazedbut little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought

Everyone started laughing when the poet called himself 'gay'. Our teacher explain that 'gay' means 'jolly'. I really liked how the word sounded.

This photo is from a Marathi show called Comedy Express.

Both of these people as men dressed as women. Men dressed as women is a clich comedy trick in India. It is seen as something awkward and funny. I know gay men don't always dress as women but I just pointing out that it is seen as something funny and unusual. What responses you get depends on your friend circle.

In my friend circle there is a guy who is really feminine, he may not be gay but he might be. In fact, he is a very nice person and a good friend. If suppose he comes out and says Hey, I'm gay. I'd be like, I thought so. You can expect to be made fun of. But then we make fun of Playboys and Virgins, and Singles and Couples alike. Most likely you'd be made fun of more often. But if your friends are discriminating against you because of that, then you're friends with the wrong people.

Now, if a stranger approaches me and says, I'm gay. I'd assume he's asking for a quickie so I'd say sorry, but I'm not gay. I mean why else would anyone go around telling strangers that he's gay.

If you're thinking of coming out in front of your parents I'd advise against it. Most Indian parents are conservative and may take you to a psychiatrist or a doctor. If you're sure that your parents are really open minded you can go ahead.

I have a bisexual friend, she has a boyfriend now, but says that she prefers girls more than boys. None of us really mind.

Overall, I must say, sex or sexual preferences are not a topic of discussion in India.

Kedar Joshi

6. The USA

Our country (The USA) has finally legalized same-sex marriage. If you said you were gay in a public setting (depending on what State you were in) you could (Continued)

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reasonably walk away safe in broad daylight, but you may not feel very safe.

Our country is VERY big, and there are LOTS of people, and not every state is very kind to gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer, or transgender people.

If you said this in the middle of a restaurant in West Hollywood, California, nothing would happen.

If you said it in the middle of a bar in rural Arkansas, or any other middle American stateI dont know.

It could be met with stares, and at the very worst it may open you up to being the victim of a hate crime if you werent careful. People do get accosted walking to their cars.

As much as I would like to believe the entirety of my nation is a bunch of fun loving, feel good friendlies, we arent. We have our fair share of very ignorant, hateful, and fearful people.
Mike DiGirolamo

7. The Netherlands

What would happen if you say I'm a gay in your country?

We would say, "So, Youre Not Gay In Your Own Country?"

The Dutch are known for their dry humour (like wit but less sophisticated).

Although there are areas in the Netherlands where it wouldnt be safe to show same gender affection in public, for the most part the Dutch are pro-gay rights and the Gay Pride parade is almost like a national holiday. So, being gay in the Netherlands is not controversial.

Martyn V. Halm

8. Syria

In Syria, there are three cases:

You happen to say Im gay in a region that is controlled by armed terrorist militias, including, but not limited to, the Islamic State. Sharia law is the sole and only law that is applicable there. That means that you will be thrown off a high, probably the highest, building in downtown.

You happen to say Im gay in a region that is dominated by the Syrian regime. You will almost certainly be ridiculed and insulted by whoever you talk to. That would be mostly verbal insults, although it can definitely take a more violent form. If you are unlucky, someone will report you to the Syrian intelligence agencies, which will arrest, insult and perhaps torture you even more badly, and then maybe sentence you to spend some time in jail. I wouldnt expect death penalty in this scenario.

You happen to say Im gay in a region that is dominated by the Kurds. These areas have a de facto local administration and are subject to neither the Islamic State nor the Syrian government. The mentality and attitude towards you would probably be similar to the second case, but Im not sure whether anyone would care to arrest you, as the governance there isnt well-established yet (and theres a chance that the Kurds would actually be more tolerant, or so one hopes).

If you are a citizen of a developed nation who happens to be in Syria and publicly talk about their sexual orientation, then that would change nothing about the first case, but would probably help you avoid the torture in the second case (and be deported instead), and face less harsh consequences in the third case.

Haidar Abboud

9. Finland

Here in Finland I think people would probably ask Ah, so youre a Swede. Its a running joke in Finland that (Continued)

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all Swedes are gay.

There are definitely anti-homosexual hate crimes committed in Finland, just like in most other places. There was a straight pride demonstration one or two years ago, organized by an ugly mix of Christian extremists and a very small contingent of Finnish neo-nazis.

But to most parts its a safe country for rainbow people.

David Weinehall

10. Norway

In Norway, even the national protestant church accepts Gay marriage. The mayor of my town is gay, and no-one ever mentions it outside the local Pride Festival. If someone so happened to publicly say Im Gay, most people would probably either not notice because theyre busy taking snaps or listening to Beyonc on their phone, or just look at you with an air of supreme boredom and say yes, and?

Besides a limited number of conservative countryside folks (mostly followers of the Laestadianism sect), really, really far-right people, and extreme religious folk, no-one cares about others being gay, lesbian, bi, straight or anything like that.

Its just a non-issue really.

Lyonel Perabo

11. The Phillippines

You either shout youre gay or say to your friends that youre gay, it doesnt matter, Filipinos judge you not on your sexual orientation, but your action and attitude.

But, there is still a lot of stereotypes, in the Philippines, when a straight person thinks of the word gay, they imagine a cross dressing femme boy, and the word lesbian, they imagine a brutish boyish woman.

The Philippines is still new to the concept that not all gay people act flamboyantly or dress as a drag queen. Filipinos would be pretty shocked to learn that someone was gay but moves like a straight guy, this type of person is considered very rare. Also, when people see good looking gay men/women, straight guys regard him/her as cool and girl would want to befriend them

Our President is pro LGBT, he may pass the same sex marriage bill on his term.

Meiji Marts

12. China

In first tier cities like Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen (where I am), people are richer and better educated generally, so they dont care, or some of them would feel a only bit weird to hear someone say he/she is gay.

Actually, my colleagues and friends seem particularly fond of LGB people. It's like a unique quality, to them.

In small cities or rural areas, which is the main population of China, people mostly will (Continued)

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feel weird or even gross.

But China is a country of 1.4 billion people, so no matter where you are, there are always open minded and narrow minded people, and thanks to the fast penetration of internet to peoples life, Chinese people are learning about the outside world fast, and they are making huge progress on education and worldviews.

Welcome to take a look in China.

Russell Tsang

13. Eritrea

They wouldnt know what youre talking about, since theres no word for that in my country. After you explained it to them they would probably be grossed out and scream at you. After the police arrive you will be thrown in prison and face 3 years in prison for merely just being attracted to the same sex.

Jordan Left

14. Mexico

It depends on which part of the country you happen to be in. There are States in Mxico that are very hetero-macho culture oriented (like Monterrey), but even there you will find open minded people who dont really care what you do under the sheets.

Very catholic people will try to convince you that homosexuality is against God, but they dont mean any harm, they just have different opinions. Most of these people will treat you okay.

I find it difficult to think that you will encounter physical violence, but hate crimes still occur, and transgender people are the most affected by it.

If you say I am gay in Puerto Vallarta, you may end up having sex that night since (Continued)

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is a very gay-friendly tourist area, lucky you! The same goes to other cities such as Guadalajara or Cancn.

In Mxico City, again it will depend on where you are since is almost a mini-world by itself. I think you will raise some eyebrows, but the general reaction will be something like meh. We are a city of more than 20 million, so we are not easily surprised here.

Mexicans like a good laugh, you may hear some jokes at your expense but you could always tell the difference between a harmless joke or an insult.

So, act as you are but if you sense you are in danger, use your mind.

scar Nieves

15. Russia

In Western part of Russia and major cities you are very unlikely to be given hard times about that. If you dress stereotypically gay, you can get a few looks, but thats it. But dont expect most of the people to be appreciative. As everywhere else, young people would be more open-minded and interested. I have gay friends myself (I didnt ask them to tell), and my common reaction is, as a relatively young straight male - Thats okay, but why would I want to know? - because for me it makes no difference at all. And its really weird if you go on about your usual friend conversation, and, then, hes like, out of nowhere - Im gay. Makes no sense. But there are places around each town of course such as clubs, neighborhoods where the same statement will probably get you adored or laid, if thats what youre up to.

But the further you go east up to the Far Eastern part, the more caution should you exercise. People tend to be more conservative en masse and bad things happen.


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