The Human Truth Foundation

LGBT Rights Across the World
Which are the Best and Worst Countries?

By Vexen Crabtree 2017

Like this page:

Share this page:
Comments:
FB, LJ

#equality #homosexuality #human_rights #intolerance #sexuality #tolerance

Most Equal (2017)1
Pos.Higher is better
Score1
1Netherlands103
2Belgium90
3Sweden86
4Brazil81
5Spain79
6France78
7S. Africa78
8Uruguay77
9Norway72
10Denmark72
11Iceland72
12UK72
13Mexico70
14Luxembourg70
15Argentina69
q=196.
Most Discriminatory (2017)1
Pos.Lower is worse
Score1
196Syria-84
195Somalia-79
194Saudi Arabia-72
193Sudan-67
192Qatar-54
191Solomon Islands-44
190Morocco-42
189Libya-42
188Tunisia-39
187Senegal-39
186Cameroon-39
185Guinea-39
184Kuwait-37
183Algeria-37
182UAE-34
q=196.

Discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) folk is rife across the world. Legal restrictions co-exist alongside social stigmatisation and physical violence2. LGBT tolerance and equal rights have been fought for country-by-country across the world, often against tightly entrenched cultural and religious opposition. Homosexual activity is outlawed in around 80 countries2. The Social & Moral LGBT Equality Index was created to compare countries and regions, granting points to each country for a variety of factors including how long gay sex has been criminalized and the extent of LGBT legal rights. Graded negative points are given for criminality of homosexuality, unequal ages of consent, legal punishments and for not signing international accords on LGBT tolerance. The signs in many developed countries are positive, and things are gradually improving. Europe is by far the least prejudiced region (Scandinavia in particular being exemplary). The Middle East and then Africa are the least morally developed, where cultural bias goes hand-in-hand with state intolerance, all too often including physical violence.


1. Current Trends

#argentina #china #christianity #equality #homosexuality #human_rights #intolerance #iran #islam #mauritania #netherlands #nigeria #norway #religion #russia #saudi_arabia #south_africa #spain #sudan #tolerance #UK #USA #yemen

The Economist (2012) produced a graph (above) for the USA and UK, and stated that "the British Social Attitudes Survey shows that views of homosexuality started out tough and hardened in the mid-1980s - the period of the AIDS panic. Since then they have softened (see chart). The young are more liberal than their parents"3.

In nearly every country strong opposition to LGBT equality and anti-discrimination laws has come from the Catholic Church, conservative Christianity, or Muslim authorities. The USA's moral development suffers from the powerful influence of conservatism tied to the Religious Right (i.e., fundamentalist evangelical Christianity) and "homosexuality was officially classified as a mental illness in the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual until 1973"4. In the Netherlands "the only opposition in parliament came from the Christian Democratic Party, which at the time was not part of the governing coalition. [...] Muslim and conservative Christian groups continue to oppose the law" (PF 2013). In Spain "Vatican officials, as well as the Catholic Spanish Bishops Conference, strongly criticized the law". In Norway there was "resistance from members of the Christian Democratic Party and the Progress Party" [...] "Lutheran-affiliated Church of Norway, was split over the issue. Following passage of the new law, the church's leaders voted to prohibit its pastors from conducting same-sex weddings". In Argentina "vigorous opposition from the Catholic Church and evangelical Protestant churches".

Obnoxiousness is not the preserve of Christian and Muslim organisations however. In South Africa religious institutions and civil officers can refuse to conduct ceremonies and "the traditional monarch of the Zulu people, who account for about one-fifth of the country's population, maintains that homosexuality is morally wrong". In the UK Christianity is a forgotten power with very little influence over public opinion. However, there are still plenty of bigots around in the UK. The UKIP party (UK Independence Party)'s official online forum has "been used to vent 'racist and homophobic' views by some of the party´s top members, including comparing homosexuality to bestiality and paedophilia", according to Pink News (2013)5. Support for UKIP comes from the under-privileged, poorly educated and angry central trash culture of the UK, which is the same segment of society that is classically considered the most homophobic and xenophobic and this pattern of aggressiveness against LGBT tolerance probably repeats across the West.

In 2008 Veronique Mottier in "Sexuality: A Very Short Introduction" reported that "around 70 countries currently criminalize homosexuality (and, in the case of Zimbabwe, same-sex hand-holding as well)"6. It is slightly more common to find that homosexual sexual activity is outlawed, as is the case in around 80 countries according to Jack Donnelly in "Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice" (2013)2.

Psychiatric labels [of homosexuality as a mental illness] were abolished in the UK in 1994, in the Russian Federation in 1999, and by the Chinese Society of Psychiatry in 2001, after gay rights groups as well as dissenting psychiatrists argued that homophobia rather than homosexuality was the problem.

"Sexuality: A Very Short Introduction" by Veronique Mottier (2008)4

In Iran, Mauritania, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Yemen (plus certain states in Nigeria) penalties up to death may be imposed. In Iran, at least three gay men were executed in both 2010 and 2011. (The actual number is almost certainly much higher.) While I was revising this chapter, four more were sentenced to death.

"Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice" by Jack Donnelly (2013)2

The Pattern of European Progression:

Kees Waaldijk has found [... :]

The law in most countries seems to be moving on a line starting at (0) total ban on homo-sex, then going through the process of (1) the decriminalisation of sex between adults, followed by (2) the equalisation of ages of consent, (3) the introduction of anti-discrimination legislation, and (4) the introduction of legal partnership. A fifth point on the line might be the legal recognition of homosexual parenthood.7

The basic logic is one of gradual inclusion, moving through increasingly active measures of nondiscrimination in a wide range of areas of public activity.

"Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice" by Jack Donnelly (2013)8

2. Factors Included in the International LGBT Equality Index

#islam

The points awarded take into account multiple factors: for how long fully equal same-sex marriage has been legal, for how long gay adoption has been possible, for how long civil unions have been possible (or any other similar domestic partnering functions that grant some equal rights to LGBT folk). A point is awarded for having signed the UN 2008 document in support of LGBT non-harassment and equality, and, a negative point is awarded for signing the anti-LGBT-document championed by the Catholic Church and the Muslim world in 2008 December. Some countries signed the opposing document but have since switched; they now get 0.5 points. Positive points are given for gay sex not being illegal and negative points for its illegality, and, a point for there being effective anti-discrimination laws protecting LGBT folk.

Several of these factors are scaled by age; meaning, the longer ago the positive change was made, the higher the score is for that criteria. Some of the criteria are necessarily capped at a maximum score as some countries have never had anti-gay-sex laws, for example.

Where same-sex marriage (SSM) and civil unions (CU) are only legal in some states of the country, but not others, I multiply the SSM+CU points by the proportion of states that accept it. Therefore, the more states that accept it, the fuller proportion of proper score the country receives.

The legality points are awarded negatively according to severity of punishments for being accused of having gay sex. There is -1 point for each year of imprisonment, -20 points for life imprisonment or corporal punishment, and, -50 points if homosexuality carries the death penalty. Many countries only have such laws against male homosexuality, but, where the laws are gender unequal, I've still assigned the worse possible points. In some cases I have reduced points if it is public knowledge that the country does not actually make its discriminatory laws effective. If gay sex is not illegal, then, points are awarded according to how long it has been legal, to a maximum of 10 points. Generally, from 1970 and further back, one point is awarded per decade.

3. Comparisons of Regions and Continents

AreaSocial & Moral
Higher is better

Points9
LGBT Equality (2017)
Higher is better

Score1
Africa...44.2-10.4
Asia...53.6-02.1
Australasia51.407.1
Baltic States66.533.3
Caribbean...56.3-01.1
Central America56.231.4
Europe...65.546.9
Mediterranean...57.317.0
Melanesia51.0-01.8
Micronesia43.015.0
Middle East...49.9-18.8
North America57.716.6
Polynesia55.7-02.4
Scandinavia...79.267.3
Small Islands...54.602.8
South America57.444.2
The Americas...57.626.1
The Balkans57.435.3
World54.412.6

4. The Full Table of Results for All Countries

LGBT Equality (2017)1
Pos.Higher is better
Score1
1Netherlands103
2Belgium90
3Sweden86
4Brazil81
5Spain79
6France78
7S. Africa78
8Uruguay77
9Norway72
10Denmark72
11Iceland72
12UK72
13Mexico70
14Luxembourg70
15Argentina69
16Malta63
17Andorra63
18New Zealand63
19Portugal63
20Canada62
21Colombia58
22Finland57
23Austria56
24Ireland53
25Ecuador50
q=196.
LGBT Equality (2017)1
Pos.Higher is better
Score1
26Australia50
27Peru50
28Hungary49
29Israel48
30Estonia45
31Honduras45
32Bolivia45
33Croatia45
34Slovenia45
35Germany44
36USA44
37Monaco40
38Poland40
39Albania40
40Switzerland40
41Serbia40
42Cyprus40
43Italy40
44Greece39
45Czech Rep.39
46Slovakia39
47Romania39
48San Marino35
49Montenegro35
50Guatemala35
q=196.
LGBT Equality (2017)1
Pos.Higher is better
Score1
51Japan35
52Bosnia & Herzegovina35
53Georgia35
54Nicaragua35
55El Salvador35
56Kosovo35
57Thailand34
58Bulgaria33
59Fiji32
60Korea, S.30
61Timor-Leste (E. Timor)30
62Costa Rica30
63Suriname30
64Venezuela30
65Lithuania30
66Taiwan25
67Chile25
68Ukraine25
69Mongolia25
70Liechtenstein25
71Macedonia25
72Cape Verde25
73Moldova25
74Turkey25
75Latvia25
q=196.
LGBT Equality (2017)1
Pos.Higher is better
Score1
76Dominican Rep.25
77Seychelles25
78Panama25
79Vietnam25
80Nepal25
81Cuba25
82Paraguay20
83Philippines20
84Central African Rep.20
85Sao Tome & Principe20
86Palau20
87Nauru20
88Marshall Islands20
89Guinea-Bissau20
90Micronesia20
91Armenia20
92Mozambique17
93Laos15
94Haiti15
95Azerbaijan15
96Equatorial Guinea15
97Burkina Faso15
98Cambodia15
99Vanuatu15
100Congo, DR15
q=196.
LGBT Equality (2017)1
Pos.Higher is better
Score1
101Lesotho15
102Belize15
103Belarus15
104Kyrgyzstan15
105Jordan12
106China12
107Djibouti11
108Mali11
109Tajikistan11
110Gabon10
111Bahamas10
112Kazakhstan8
113Korea, N.8
114Rwanda7
115Congo, (Brazzaville)5
116Madagascar5
117Chad5
118Indonesia1
119Ivory Coast1
120Russia1
121Benin1
122Niger1
123Bahrain-2
124Sierra Leone-3
125Grenada-5
q=196.
LGBT Equality (2017)1
Pos.Higher is better
Score1
126Dominica-5
127Namibia-5
128Kiribati-5
129Jamaica-5
130Cook Islands-5
131Guyana-5
132St Lucia-9
133India-10
134Samoa-10
135Trinidad & Tobago-10
136S. Sudan-10
137Papua New Guinea-10
138Sri Lanka-10
139Antigua & Barbuda-10
140St Vincent & Grenadines-10
141Mauritius-10
142Myanmar (Burma)-10
143Barbados-10
144Ethiopia-14
145Eritrea-14
146Brunei-14
147Swaziland-14
148Kenya-14
149Singapore-15
150Zambia-15
q=196.
LGBT Equality (2017)1
Pos.Higher is better
Score1
151Bangladesh-17
152Tanzania-17
153Iran-19
154Malaysia-19
155Gambia-19
156Maldives-19
157Afghanistan-19
158Liberia-20
159Bhutan-20
160Burundi-20
161Nigeria-22
162Malawi-22
163Uganda-22
164Oman-22
165Yemen-22
166Turkmenistan-24
167Lebanon-24
168Zimbabwe-24
169St Kitts & Nevis-25
170Botswana-25
171Ghana-25
172Pakistan-26
173Egypt-27
174Iraq-29
175Togo-29
q=196.
LGBT Equality (2017)1
Pos.Higher is better
Score1
176Comoros-30
177Angola-30
178Uzbekistan-30
179Tonga-30
180Tuvalu-30
181Mauritania-32
182UAE-34
183Kuwait-37
184Algeria-37
185Tunisia-39
186Guinea-39
187Cameroon-39
188Senegal-39
189Libya-42
190Morocco-42
191Solomon Islands-44
192Qatar-54
193Sudan-67
194Saudi Arabia-72
195Somalia-79
196Syria-84
q=196.

Current edition: 2017 Sep 2710
Originally published 2016 Jun 04
http://www.humantruth.info/lgbt_rights_across_the_world.html
Parent page: Human Sexuality

All #tags used on this page - click for more:

#argentina #china #christianity #equality #homosexuality #human_rights #intolerance #iran #islam #mauritania #netherlands #nigeria #norway #religion #russia #saudi_arabia #sexuality #south_africa #spain #sudan #tolerance #UK #USA #yemen

Social Media

References: (What's this?)

Book Cover

Book Cover

The Economist. Published by The Economist Group, Ltd. A weekly newspaper in magazine format, famed for its accuracy, wide scope and intelligent content. See vexen.co.uk/references.html#Economist for some commentary on this source..

Donnelly, Jack
(2013) Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice. 3rd edition. Published by Cornell University Press.

Mottier, Veronique
(2008) Sexuality: A Very Short Introduction. Published by Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.

Waaldijk, Kees
(1994) Article "Standard Sequences in the Legal Recognition of Homosexuality: Europe's Past, Present, and Future" published in the Australian Gay and Lesbian Law Journal 4 (4):5-72. In Donnelly (2013) p290.

Footnotes

  1. Sources:^^^
  2. Donnelly (2013) chapter 16 "Nondiscrimination for All: The Case of Sexual Minorities" p278.^^
  3. The Economist (2012 Mar 03) article "Homophobia: It's getting better".^
  4. Mottier (2008) digital location 720-723.^
  5. www.pinknews.co.uk/... article "Members of UKIP official website compare homosexuality to bestiality and paedeophilia" (2013 Jan 14). Accessed 2014 Jan 23.^
  6. Mottier (2008) digital location 1617.^
  7. Waaldijk (1994) 51-52.^
  8. Donnelly (2013) chapter 16 "Nondiscrimination for All: The Case of Sexual Minorities" p290.^
  9. "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life" by Vexen Crabtree (2017)^
  10. 2017 Sep 27: The underlying formula has been redone, and ILGA (2017) statistics added to the index, replacing some previous data sets.^

©2017 Vexen Crabtree all rights reserved.
This site uses the HTF Disclaimer (as linked here)