Anti-LGBT Discourse: A Story of Preserved Hate Speech

Anti-LGBT Discourse: A Story of Preserved Hate Speech


The Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS) condemns the government demeanor which support and permit the discourse of Anti-Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) among the community, which nowadays already developing to become a hate speech. In one recent month, the issue of LGBT rejection in a trending topic among the community. The discourse that started only by a private displeasure statement against the LGBT groups, developing becoming a discriminative statement to a hate speech which lead into violence and social conflict.

For example, on Tuesday, February 23, 2016 – groups of Solidaritas Perjuangan Demokrasi (SPD) hold an mass action in Tugu Yogyakarta to speak about their statement to demand LGBT rights and fights against hate speech against LGBT. However, the mass action could not hold in Tugu Yogyakarta because it was not permitted by the police. The excuses are, the intolerance mass identified as the members of Ukhuwah Islamiyah Forum (FUI) already occupied and conducted mass action in Tugu Yogyakarta. In their action, FUI mass propagated a release regarding a threat to conduct “burning, stoning or other punishment from the high level” against the LGBT groups. Those matters become examples on how hate speech that spreading among the community against the LGBT grouos affecting to discrimination against other community, it is violating freedom of association and assembly and freedom of expression that support LGBT groups’ rights.

The development of Anti-LGBT discourse turned into hate speech also sponsored and receive legitimation from the state actors. By KontraS’ records, there are 17 public officials, both from the executive or legislative, that stated discriminative statement against LGBT groups. Some of them even suggested to prepare the discourse of Anti-LGBT groups itself to be adopted as the state policy. We could mention Indonesian Broadcasting Commission (KPI), Indonesian Child Protection Commission (KPAI) that aggressively opened conducted discrimination expression in the name of laws.

Related with the phenomenon above, frequently there are miss-interpreting that those Anti-LGBT statements were one of the form of freedom of expression, therefore the state should not intervene to muffle the hate speech. However, state and community should understand the definition between private statement, discriminative statement and hate speech; whether for those that propagated directly in a form of flyers or like nowadays in social media. Anti-LGBT discourse could be categorize only as private statement if it were only personal dislikes against LGBT behavior. In this statement, Anti-LGBT discourse do not become social conflict threat and discrimination among the community.

However, if those statements already as particular suggestions or prohibitions against the activities of LGBT groups or attack and targeted individuals, then those statement could be categorized as discriminative statement. If the discriminative statements already appeared, the state should be started to detecting which parties issued those statements. Because, those discriminative frequently develop to become a hate speech.

Furthermore, if the Anti-LGBT discourse already developed to become invitation to discriminate or conducting several violations against the LGBT groups, then those matters already could be categorized as hate speech. Related with the hate speech, state should actively conduct several prevention and law enforcement in regards to make the hate speech not develop to become social conflict.

Moreover, KontraS also wants to respond regarding the sex orientation issue as an infectious disease. In this context, this is important to re-verify the argumentation among several community groups that suggest Anti-LGBT movement into contexts as (1) LGBT as an infectious disease, (2) LGBT lifestyle that could infecting same sex orientation. KontraS states that LGBT remain as an orientation that could not categorized as infectious disease. There is a measurements in Indonesia based on rule of law which is Law No. 4/1984 regarding Epidemic Infectious Disease that issued by Minister of Health Decree (Permenkes) No. 82/2014 regarding Infectious Disease Countermeasures that should be reach to prove. Moreover, these argumentations already break by the existence of global research which not relating the LGBT as a disease and mental disorder as Indonesia already involved to become the state party on the agreement of Program of Action (PoA) to eradicate discriminations, violence, coercion regarding sexual reproduction options (article 7.3) on the event of International Conference on Population and Development (Kairo, 1994). As also strengthen in Yogyakarta Principles (2006).

Related with the platform to respond the hate speech, state authorities, particularly the National Police of Republic Indonesia, actually already have Chief of National Police Circular Letter No. SE/06//X/2015 regarding Handling of Hate speech (SE Ujaran Kebencian). In point 2 letter G of SE Ujaran Kebencian states:

“Hate speech is… intend to incite and triggered hatred against individuals and/or community groups inside various community that divided from (aspect: 11) sexual orientation;”

Therefore, every provocative statements that could discriminate LGBT groups could be categorized as hate speech as stated in SE Ujaran Kebencian.

In the settlement by National Police, point 3 of SE Ujaran Kebencian states that:

“…notified/informed that to resolve hate speech should not appoint discrimination acts, violence, lives disappearance, and/or spreading social conflict that should have measures of the settlement, inter alia: a) conduct prevention acts…; b) if the prevention acts already conducted by the National Police members and could not resolve the problems that appeared as an impact of hate speech, therefore the settlement could be conducted by: law enforcement of allegation of the hate speech crime…;”

Therefore, we conclude that the state already have mechanisms to respond the hate speech against the LGBT groups. On the implementation, state could prevent the hate speech that develop to become social conflict or further discrimination against the LGBT groups. In responding to this issue, the state should learn by the previous prosecution incidents against the minority groups that occurred. On those incidents, it could be seen that how the state had failed to prevent social conflict that occurred because previously the state had let several discrimination discourses against that vulnerable groups. If this omission remains to be maintained then someday there will be other minority groups discriminated in Indonesia. In responding various perspective regarding minority groups, the states should remain to make integrity protection and individuals security as priority without considering the backgrounds.

Based on the facts above, KontraS urges:

First, the President of Republic of Indonesia to make a command to their staffs to not make any discriminative statements against the LGBT groups;

Second, the Chief on National Police of Republic Indonesia to give protection and security guarantee towards the LGBT groups in Indonesia;

Third, the Chief of National Police of Republic Indonesia to conduct several law enforcement to respond the parties that conduct hate speech simultaneously against the LGBT groups as regulated in SE No. 6/X/2015.

Fourth, outside the law domain, KontraS would like to urge towards the influencing figures in Indonesia started from the musicians, artists, and for them that having interactions with public using the social media with thousands of followers to keep developing discourses and encouraging statements with not violating the rule of law, constitutions and other legal standards. Because, if they are ignoring those matters above, they are potentially to add more stigma and discrimination that could lead to the spreading of hatespeech that could not be controlled.



Jakarta, February 25, 2015

KontraS’ Workers


Haris Azhar, MA



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