The Happiness of the Next Generation Alliance yesterday said it had collected nearly 2 million signatures for three referendum proposals on homosexuality, which would run alongside the Nov. 24 nine-in-one elections once they complete the registration process at the Central Election Commission, while two referendum proposals to advance gay rights promoted by the opposite camp are still 80,000 signatures short of their goal.
The alliance’s proposals ask: “Do you agree that marriage should be strictly defined as between a man and a woman in the Civil Code?”; “Do you agree that the right of same-sex couples to live together should be protected through ways that do not require amending the Civil Code?”; and “Do you agree that provisions in the Enforcement Rules for Gender Equity Education Act (性別平等教育法施行細則) concerning homosexuality education should not be implemented at the elementary and junior-high school levels?”
According to the alliance, the proposals gathered 678,550, 633,450 and 670,100 signatures respectively, far exceeding the legal threshold of 281,745 signatures.
“This is not a war between conservatives and proponents of new ideas. It is about making a choice about our fundamental values,” alliance president Tseng Hsien-ying (曾獻瑩) told a news conference.
“Children encounter all kinds of problems in their lives and we always try our best to help them, but we will not allow any attempts to undermine values that are fundamental to families,” Tseng added.
While the group was ready to submit the 1,982,100 signed petition papers they had collected to the commission, officials were still occupied with referendum petitions submitted by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Monday.
They were therefore forced to leave the papers on the commission’s porch after the news conference.
Meanwhile, two referendum proposals put forward by a group of LGBT rights advocates led by Social Democratic Party member Miao Po-ya (苗博雅) are also closing in on the referendum thresholds.
Their proposals ask: “Do you agree the rights of same-sex couples to marry each other should be protected in the Civil Code’s chapter on Marriage?” and “Do you agree that the Gender Equity Education Act (性別平等教育法) should require gender quality education to cover homosexuality, relationships and sex education and be taught at elementary and junior-high schools?”
The group on Monday estimated that it has collected between 220,000 and 230,000 signatures for each proposal, which means it needs 80,000 more before Aug. 30 to qualify.
Campaigns to promote the two proposals were launched on April 18, a day after the anti-LGBT proposals passed initial reviews by the commission.
However, they did not begin collecting signatures to meet the 281,745 threshold until July 24 due to the commission’s lengthy paperwork process.
For a referendum to pass, at least a quarter of the nation’s eligible voters must cast an affirmative vote, with the “yes” votes outnumbering the “no” votes.
The Han Kuang exercises, the nation’s major war games, are to start today and run for five days. The drills are to include a military aircraft emergency takeoff and landing exercise on a regular roadway on Wednesday, featuring all three fighter jet models in Taiwan’s fleet, a military source said last week. The drill is to begin at 6:30am on a 3km section of Provincial Highway No. 1 in Pingtung County’s Jiadong Township (佳冬), and feature an Indigenous Defense Fighter, an F-16V, a Mirage 2000-5 and an E-2K Hawkeye early warning aircraft, the source said. The emergency landing and takeoff drill aims to
MRNA VACCINE: Heart inflammation is rare, but possible after a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 shot, and students need to be aware of possible side effects, an expert said As Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccinations for students aged 12 to 17 are to begin on campuses on Thursday next week, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday urged recipients to be especially watchful for five signs of possible myocarditis or pericarditis, which are rare adverse reactions to some COVID-19 vaccines. The Ministry of Health and Welfare’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices convener Lee Ping-ing (李秉穎) joined the CECC’s daily news briefing to report on possible side effects after receiving a BioNTech vaccine. Lee said that cases of myocarditis and pericarditis have been observed in people in the US who have received mRNA COVID-19
Taiwan on Friday accused China of seeking to use the Honduran election to “create controversy” and undermine Taiwan’s long-standing ties with the country, saying it would strive to win support for Honduras’ relations with Taipei. Honduras’ main left-wing opposition party, the Liberty and Refoundation Party (LIBRE), led by ousted former Honduran president Manuel Zelaya, has said that if it wins November’s presidential election it would seek to “readjust” the country’s debt and establish diplomatic relations with China. Honduras is one of 15 UN member countries that maintain formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which has already warned Honduras not
WORKING TOGETHER: Masahisa Sato said that the Liberal Democratic Party is aiming to share ideas about Taiwan-related policies and improve ties with Taiwan Countries in the Asia-Pacific region are increasingly being threatened by China, and like-minded nations should work together to resist such threats, Japanese politicians said. Japanese House of Representatives members Keiji Furuya and Masahisa Sato made the comments in a video played on Friday at a conference held by the Taiwan Japan Academy in Taipei. Furuya praised President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) administration for its efforts in reinforcing exchanges with countries in Southeast Asia and South Asia through the New Southbound Policy. Taiwan also has interests in the Pacific Islands region, but they have come under threat from China in the past few years,