Over the weekend, a long-standing bar in Kuala Lumpur’s city center was raided by authorities from the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM), KL City Hall (DBKL), Federal Territories Islamic Religious Department (JAWI) and the National Anti-Drug Agency (AADK).
While one government representative alleged the reason for the raid on Blue Boy on Sultan Ismail was a “serious drug addiction problem” in the area, an official statement from the Federal Territories Minister Khalid Samad via the ministry Facebook page alleges that police action occurred due to the fact that the club was an LGBTQ+ venue.
“The government is very serious in dealing with this radical belief. Hopefully this initiative can mitigate the LGBT culture from spreading into our society,” the statement, which describes the venue as a “famous gay club,” said.
It also outlined that authorities were acting in order to “mitigate LGBTQ+ culture from spreading into our society.”
Authorities report that the 1:30am raid affected 100 punters who were inside, some of them tourists. Twenty of those arrested have been ordered to go to counseling.
Much ado had been made that this is the venue’s first raid in their 30-year history.
Sources speaking to Coconuts KL report that other non-LGBTQ+ venues have been raided recently in what some believe may have something to do with having hosted LGBTQ+ inclusive events of late.
Today, Deputy Prime Minister Dr. Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, told Malay Mail that LGBTQ+ individuals have the right to practice “whatever it is they do in private,” but advised them against “glamorizing” their private lives.
No clarification has been given as to what “glamorizing” actually means considering a person having a drink in a bar is grounds for a “counseling” session.
You may remember the good doctor is the same person who advised citizens to not “judge” a 41-year-old man who declared he was “in love” with his 11-year-old wife. K.
Pink News has outlined Malaysia’s poor track record on LGBTQ+ rights, writing that homosexuality has been illegal since sodomy was banned under British rule (thanks, colonialism). In 1994, a Mahathir (first round)-led government made it illegal for openly LGBTQ+ individuals to make appearances on state-sponsored media.
Human Rights Watch reported in 2015 that LGBTQ+ discrimination was “pervasive in Malaysia,” with the deputy health minister recently stating that he believed that members of the community suffered from an “organic disorder.”
Pakatan Harapan, the newly elected government many hope meant a change in peddling to the sensationalist issues of the previous government, has seen an alarmingly large amount of anti-LGBTQ+ issues of late.
Recently, portraits of community activists have been removed from a non-political photo exhibit at the behest of Islamic Affairs officials, and a debate as to which bathrooms transgender individuals should use has become a national hot topic, after several officials weighed in their opinions.
Last week, we reported that two women in the eastern province of Terengganu have been sentenced to six strokes of the cane for “attempted lesbian sex.”
But hey … don’t go “judging” pedophiles, ya’ll.