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Tokyo’s Setagaya Ward to begin legally recognizing same-sex partnerships

140 Comments
By Meg Murphy, RocketNews24

In a landmark move last February, Shibuya Ward in Tokyo announced it would begin legally officiating same-sex partnerships, giving gay couples the same rights as married heterosexual couples. While the movement, set to begin in October this year, has received some scrutiny, it has also seen plenty of support.

Now, in what may be the beginning of a domino effect, one of Shibuya’s neighboring wards, Setagaya, has also announced that it will be offering the same legal recognition to same-sex couples, beginning this November.

Setagaya Ward officials announced on Wednesday the decision to begin legally recognizing same-sex partnerships. While the details of the motion have yet to be announced, there are hopes that the movement will help increase awareness of and reduce prejudices against the LGBT community. The ward will begin issuing certifications this November.

According to the outline, residents of Setagaya Ward (or one resident, whose partner provides proof of plans to move to Setagaya Ward) who are both 20 years or older, can pledge an oath of partnership and receive an officiated certificate acknowledging their oath.

Same-sex couples often have housing applications rejected and are denied hospital visitation rights which are limited to registered family members only. There are hopes that the measures taken in Shibuya and Setagaya will help reduce this kind of discrimination.

According to a diversity survey conducted by Dentsu Inc., the leading international advertising and public relations company in Japan, of approximately 70,000 people surveyed, 7.6 percent identified as LGBT. Let’s hope this domino effect continues, as it will positively benefit so many people.

Source: Tokyo Shimbun

Read more stories from RocketNews24. -- Tokyo’s Shibuya Ward to offer marriage certificates to same-sex couples -- Japan government hard at work trying to prevent Shibuya Ward approving same-sex marriages -- Taiwan’s capital city begins registration of same-sex partnerships

© Japan Today

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140 Comments
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It will be great when LGBT equality is established under the law and in practice and social justice concerns and energy can shift back to addressing growing class inequalities.

5 ( +11 / -6 )

Hopefully in Japan it will go quickly! There are no religious hangups or zealots to deal with and Japanese (historically speaking) have been pretty open and honest with issues regarding "sex".

Naha, in Okinawa had their "Pink-dot" celebration recently and the city even changed the color of it's logo from red to pink for one day, in support and celebration of the LGBT community!

8 ( +13 / -5 )

The real issue is that ALL people, whomever they love or have sex with, should be entitled to full equality under the law--exactly as the Constitution promises.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It is weird. A man marry a man, a woman marry a woman! Next will be a man or a woman marry other animals.

-32 ( +7 / -38 )

Hopefully in Japan it will go quickly!

I think it will. Japan is always afraid to be the first ones to do something revolutional, but once other countries have done it, and successful at it, they tend to follow.

Since the US and some European countries officially recognize same sex marriage, Japan will probably follow suit soon.

Definitely a small but important step towards equal rights in Japan.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

giving gay couples the same rights as married heterosexual couples

C'mon Japan Today, neither Shibuya nor Setagaya offers to do any such thing, as has been repeatedly pointed out. The certificate simply recognizes the couple as a couple, and asks that others (landlords, hospitals, etc.) do the same. It is not legally binding on anyone, and confers none of the legal rights or obligations (tax-related benefits, etc.) controlled by the central government.

Let's stop spreading this falsehood.

14 ( +15 / -2 )

@Stephen Knight,

Word! All this does is put out the welcome mat in front of the door but doesn't give them the keys to the door. Do it for real and make it legally binding. Gay couples don't need to be condescended to with a cute certificate that still offers them no rights.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

It is weird. A man marry a man, a woman marry a woman! Next will be a man or a woman marry other animals.

Go back to your cave!

Congratulations Setagaya, welcome to 2015! Now if all other 45 prefectures will follow suit!

10 ( +14 / -4 )

@Stephen Knight now that's disappointing, but thank you for making us aware of it.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

All for SEX and money only..nothing else

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

It is weird. A man marry a man, a woman marry a woman! Next will be a man or a woman marry other animals.

Just goes to show that with all of our advancements, there are still some who are completely ignorant.

Good on Setagaya for this. It's another step in the right direction.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Getting rid of the term "same-sex marriage" would really be progress ! Never did care for the term "international marriage either !

6 ( +8 / -2 )

All for SEX and money only..nothing else

Gee, whatever happened to love???

6 ( +6 / -0 )

schopenhauer your point is onyl valid in the US, where gays and lesbians were suing for equality. you're right that gay marriage is a moral issue and not a legal issue, as pointed out by quite a few member of SCOTUS. if you claim marriage equality under the rule of law, then what is to prevent someone from marrying a dog or any other animal in the future. aren't they also being discriminated against? but in japan, there has been no lawsuit, and it's being done at the local level, not at the national level.

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

@Yubaru

There are no religious hangups or zealots to deal with and Japanese (historically speaking) have been pretty open and honest with issues regarding "sex".

While this might be true, there seems to be an incredibly strong discourse around marriage, that is male-female marriage, here in Japan. It was only the other day in the hair dressers when I asked about my 'okusan'. The assumption is the default male equals straight male. When I said there no okusan, she suggested I find someone kawaii...hmmm I had to bite my tongue. What does one say in these circumstances? "I am actually a gay man with a partner who happens to be a man"??? Hmmm, I can hardly imagine the reaction that would create. Japanese language textbooks too need to be updated to reflect a family structure other than the on-going father, mother and two kids type scenario...

Until non-onee celebrities and idols come out as gay and lesbian and fight for equality before the law, Japan will linger in its fantasy of straightness. I wouldn't be surprised that once the debate heats up about same-sex marriage that there will be "zealots" who will argue against it.

Just the other night I was watching Okamura Takashi hosting a show about men who spend lots of money on their beauty regimes (skin and face mainly) to appear young and healthy. There was one guy in the guest line-up who just couldn't understand the reasons why men would do what was clearly, for him, something that women do. This guy's conception of gender was firmly set and I feel that performances of masculinity and femininity here in Japan also seem to be fixed into what may be stereotypes. Guys (and women too) like this one may be the ones who will come out against legalising same-sex marriage here in Japan.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

"you're right that gay marriage is a moral issue and not a legal issue, as pointed out by quite a few member of SCOTUS."

So if it's a moral and not legal issue, why have gay marriage opponents lost virtually all court cases?

"...then what is to prevent someone from marrying a dog or any other animal in the future."

This is a completely nonsensical argument. Just ridiculous.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Just ridiculous.

I disagree. It has always been about gay sex being immoral. Now that that's out, it's not about sex anymore but about individual rights. So who are you to say I can't marry my pet parrot? We already have funeral services and pet cemeteries, it's the logical next step.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

I think it's a shame that grown-ups understand that by "same-sex" marriage, a couple gets married only for sex, as pointed above. This is a lack of common-sense and respect. Most couples that want to get married have are in love, they want to share what they have, they have plans that involves the other half. And what about comparing same-sex relationships to man-animal ones? Come on, you have more inside yourself than this disrespect and ignorance you're showing us.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

FizzBit:

I think pedosexuals will demand the right to have relationships with whom they love first. Just as with homosexuality (in the past) and bestiality, its just a law that prevents them from doing so. Interesting...

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

No, it's not a next logical step. Many countries offer PEOPLE rights that they consider to be fundamental human ones. Happily we're moving towards a situation where this includes people of various sexualities. I'm not aware of any countries that offer animals fundamental human rights so I have no idea why this would apply in the case of marriage. You might as well say "Saudi Arabia shouldn't let women drive - the next logical step is for goats to start driving".

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Is this LGBT still a thing? I thought we've ascended past this. This is a 2015 first world problem no one cares about anymore.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

@Stephen Knight, you make a very valid point. It would be interesting to know, however, how this works in practice. For example, a lot of Japanese public services are administered at the local level - for example the health service, some welfare benefits. Does anyone know if Shibuya and Setagaya are allowing same-sex couples to be considered married for health insurance purposes?

C'mon Japan Today, neither Shibuya nor Setagaya offers to do any such thing, as has been repeatedly pointed out. The certificate simply recognizes the couple as a couple, and asks that others (landlords, hospitals, etc.) do the same. It is not legally binding on anyone, and confers none of the legal rights or obligations (tax-related benefits, etc.) controlled by the central government.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

next is pedophile and polygamy....sick...they do it for love????

-10 ( +5 / -15 )

I'm guessing that a part of the reason why they accept gay people is to attract more residents and get them to move in their ward, which I think is fine. However, it's really important to consider this matter to be more about human rights than just a policy, so I hope that series of movements make people re-think and discuss that.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

First Shibuya, now Setagaya. What about Shinjuku? We have Tokyo's biggest gay town here. I hope Shinjuku is not getting behind the times. I guess Nakano will be next. The biggest gay residential area is in Nakano. But my partner and I are not moving from Shinjuku.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Wonderful! Let's keep this domino effect rolling....

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Japan gone pink because US did but this is not really best thing after all...

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Liberalism isn't just a mental disorder... it's full blown syphilis... and spreading.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

I think it's a shame that grown-ups understand that by "same-sex" marriage, a couple gets married only for sex, as pointed above.

You're putting words in my mouth. Why would you do that?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I hope you're not confused by the caption.

Local governments cannot "legally" recognize same-sex partnerships. They have no power to revise the CIvil Code of Japan.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"...then what is to prevent someone from marrying a dog or any other animal in the future."

This is a completely nonsensical argument. Just ridiculous.

if gay marriage rests solely on the basis of equal protection under the law, then what is your argument against a person marrying an animal? or against polygamy?

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

'All for SEX and money only..nothing else'

Plenty of straight people marry for sex and money, particularly the latter. I didn't want to marry someone who was skint and frigid. I'm sure some gay people think like me and others take a more romantic view - just like many straight people. What's your point?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Same-sex marriage should not be used as official terminology. They should use same-sex union, same-sex partnership etc etc. whatever.... for marriage is a religious thing. Marriage does includes COVENANT with God. Marriage in the eyes of religion and God, always mentioned the conjuntion "AND". ... that is Marriage have SEXUAL actions, PROCREATION (unless otherwise a mom cannot conceive due to medical reason) and REARING CHILDREN as them (parents are also children of GOD).

It is normal to have gray area in sexual orientation. But these LGBT should not go to the Ward-Office, Courts, Senate or Congress or other legislative bodies to fight for MARRIAGE rights because LGBT is not social, civil-rights nor a legal rights. They already have all the equal opportunity and privilege as a living constituents. But please don't touch the world of "Marriage". If you want to live together, go on, make them as UNION or PARTNERSHIP.

Instead of going to courts and ward-offices to fight for their rights, they should go to Mental Hospitals, for same-sex marriage is much more of a mental or cognitive problems. Imagine a man trying to emulate the wonder of being a MOTHER, with breast milk feeding their kids... Imagine a woman emulating a FATHER, who as part of religion and covenant need to pump and pump to make children. What a woman emulating a father pumping with her partner is pure mental and lustful desire.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

It's amazing that some people would equate marriage between two consenting adults with marriage between a consenting adult and an unable to give consent minor, or animal.

It either shows a lack of intelligence in being able to equate things, or it's disingenuous in trying to turn people away from something they don't like by providing an emotional argument against it. Either way it doesn't speak well for the person who makes such absurd claims.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

'Same-sex marriage should not be used as official terminology. They should use same-sex union, same-sex partnership etc etc. whatever.... for marriage is a religious thing. Marriage does includes COVENANT with God. Marriage in the eyes of religion and God, always mentioned the conjuntion "AND". ... that is Marriage have SEXUAL actions, PROCREATION (unless otherwise a mom cannot conceive due to medical reason) and REARING CHILDREN as them (parents are also children of GOD).'

And you are saying it's gays who need mental help? Keep taking the meds, or better still, up the dosage.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

@idiots claiming domino effect leading towards marrying animals/children:

...you do realize animals and children can not give consent to marry...right? As in they can not even fathom the concept...right?

Do you really truly believe a fully matured adult is equal to, say, a goldfish in cognitive reasoning skill? Or an 8 year old?

.____.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@AU

So according to you, a straight man and woman who marry in a civil ceremony shouldn't be able to claim they're married? Or is that different?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Same-sex marriage should not be used as official terminology. They should use same-sex union, same-sex partnership etc etc. whatever.... for marriage is a religious thing. Marriage does includes COVENANT with God. Marriage in the eyes of religion and God, always mentioned the conjuntion "AND". ... that is Marriage have SEXUAL actions, PROCREATION (unless otherwise a mom cannot conceive due to medical reason) and REARING CHILDREN as them (parents are also children of GOD).

I'm not sure where you got this idea from. I got married in a religious (Shinto) ceremony, and none of these were things that were claimed in the ceremony, or expected.

Unless you are trying to say that the only "real" marriage is Christian. In which case you've just taken away any credibility whatsoever that you may have had, since there are billions of married people who are not Christian.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Also, at AU:

Your definition only covers Christianity or similar religions. What about tribal situations who have no gods? They can't be married?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The rampant political correctness in this issue is amazing. Do the "same sex marriage" advocates not see that by giving official recognition of combination of 2 men or 2 women as a "marriage", they are simply stepping on a slippery slope, where in the end, they have to accept everything as a "marriage"?

For example, the logical next step must be recognize polygamy. Actually, polygamy is a vastly smaller step than "same sex" marriage. Unlike "same sex marriage", it has a long history and is practised in many cultures. All the arguments for recognition of "same sex" also apply for polygamy, plus there is the issue of multiculturalism (right now, we discriminate against polygamist cultures).

It is only a question of time, until clever lawyers pick up on that. Harem, here we come.

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

Reading some comments again.... for some reason I get the feeling I am watching FOX news, and a chanting of "Jeb, Jeb, Jeb" or "Trump Trump Trump" in my head.... thank you for the nightmares.

Yet another reason why I feel a lot of commentators here are unwilling/unable to discuss any matter seriously and obviously asking them to "put yourselves in others people's place" is impossible.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Japan, the land of lip service. We all know that there's nothing legal about this. As some other readers pointed out, this is just a certificate and does not legally make landlords or hospitals follow the rules. It just asks. Same as the government asking companies to improve salaries, men/women labor equality, etc. I'd like to hear what gay couples that received the certificate have to say about it. What really improved or worsened.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Do the "same sex marriage" advocates not see that by giving official recognition of combination of 2 men or 2 women as a "marriage", they are simply stepping on a slippery slope, where in the end, they have to accept everything as a "marriage"?

No, because it's a ridiculous idea to think that allowing marriage between two consenting adults would lead to marriage between non-consenting entities.

For example, the logical next step must be recognize polygamy. Actually, polygamy is a vastly smaller step than "same sex" marriage. Unlike "same sex marriage", it has a long history and is practised in many cultures.

First, polygamy isn't something you are born with like homosexuality. Kids aren't 'realizing' at seven or eight years old that they want to get married to multiple people. Homosexuals however are realizing this, because it's the way they are born.

Next, if someone wants to marry multiple people, so what. If they are all consenting, why should they not be allowed to do so?

It amazes be that people want to legally prevent people from doing something they consent to, just because those who are preventing are uncomfortable with it.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

Strangerland:

" First, polygamy isn't something you are born with like homosexuality. "

I was not talking about homosexuality, I was talking about "same sex marriage". I do not think that 2 men should be recognized by society as a suitable combination for rearing children, and I do not believe that changes if they happen to be homosexual.

" Next, if someone wants to marry multiple people, so what. If they are all consenting, why should they not be allowed to do so? "

I rest my my case. This is exactly what I was saying too. If society recognizes "same sex" marriages, it must logically also recognize polygamy. In fact, more so. Glad we agree.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Once Japan's highest court.... you know, the U.S. Supreme Court, made it illegal to ban same-sex marriage, it was just a matter of time before some entity in Japan figured they'd be bold and follow suit.... just to show Japan is as progressive as other countries. Never a leader.... always a follower.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Satanists have already put up a statue of Baphomet in Detroit, right to free speech and all that.

It's only a matter of time until they're granted the right to marry ...

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I do not think that 2 men should be recognized by society as a suitable combination for rearing children, and I do not believe that changes if they happen to be homosexual.

Where is there a requirement that children must be raised by a married couple? If the couple cannot have children, should they be forced to divorce and remarry?

Anyways, fortunately you are turning into a dinosaur with your way of thinking, and people will look back at your way of thinking as backwards in a few decades.

I rest my my case. This is exactly what I was saying too. If society recognizes "same sex" marriages, it must logically also recognize polygamy.

And why shouldn't we? You act as if it's inherent that there is something wrong with it. I'm disagreeing.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Legalizing same sex marriage is mainly about Rights. The right to receive the same social benefits as hetero marriages. Now I do agree with Strangerland... in that as long as no one is being hurt... polygamy is no big deal and consensual but it really gets complicated when the breadwinner dies and benefits have to be divided. Heck... there may be a wealth clause for polygamy. If you want to have multiple spouses.... you have to set up a sizeable lifetime annuity for her or even him first.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Anyone that thinks homophobia is dead just needs to take a look at some of the comments that accompany gay-related articles. Disgusting to see the complete lack of logic or understanding against a community thats probably one of the most peaceful.

On the other hand its always uplifting to see the positive comments & know we're not all completely doomed.

I agree with Stephen Knight that it seems the paper is not legally binding which would mean nothing more than all flash and no substance. Sort it.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Anyone that thinks homophobia is dead just needs to take a look at some of the comments that accompany gay-related articles.

It's definitely not dead. On the contrary, you have the bigots doubling down on stupid, as they realize that their views are slowly being pushed to the side as irrelevant and discriminatory.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

The rampant political correctness in this issue is amazing. Do the "same sex marriage" advocates not see that by giving official recognition of combination of 2 men or 2 women as a "marriage", they are simply stepping on a slippery slope, where in the end, they have to accept everything as a marriage"

The slippery slope argument again. My country didn't decriminalize homosexual sex until the 1960s and the bigots of those days were arguing that this would open the floodgates for legalizing bestiality and sex with children. 2015 and....

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

It amazes be that people want to legally prevent people from doing something they consent to, just because those who are preventing are uncomfortable with it.

you don't seem to comprehend that this is not a homophobic sentiment. no one has stated that they are against same-sex marriage. that's just your assumption. many of us are just pointing out the logical conclusion of this quest for marriage equality: people should be allowed to marry anyone or anything they want. you just say that this line of thought is ridiculous without justifying it. the 14th amendment states equal protection under the law. simply put, if one group is allowed to do something then that same right should apply to other groups who want to do the same thing. so logically speaking, allowing for multiple marriages and marriages to "things" should also be legal. you should argue with reason and not emotion.

and ad hominem attacks are always so nice coming from you.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

has anyone watched the Japanese movie 「僕の彼女はロボワイフ」. Yes, the next thing to follow (after legalizing same-sex marriage) is legalizing marriage with Robot (Androids) where in the muscle-control emulate that of a real woman.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Interesting to see that it is always the bigots with the 'think of the children' nonsense yet they are the ones who really shouldn't be bringing children into a modern world.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

The next thing to be changed in the DEFINITION is FATHER and MOTHER. Then there is the maternity leave and paternity leave. Same-sex couple will find same rights as this in the future. Well that's EQUAL RIGHTS they are looking for, why not.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

'Interesting to see that it is always the bigots with the 'think of the children' nonsense yet they are the ones who really shouldn't be bringing children into a modern world.'

Very true. It's also inevitable that many of these children will reject the unpleasant and archaic beliefs of their parents despite the very best efforts to keep this nonsense alive. They'll flush the toilet after their parents.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Think they can visit one another in hospital but not legally get marry yet.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

this is not a homophobic sentiment.

Discrimination based on sexuality is most definitely a homophobic statement.

many of us are just pointing out the logical conclusion of this quest for marriage equality: people should be allowed to marry anyone or anything they want. you just say that this line of thought is ridiculous without justifying it.

I did justify it

It's amazing that some people would equate marriage between two consenting adults with marriage between a consenting adult and an unable to give consent minor, or animal.

so logically speaking, allowing for multiple marriages and marriages to "things" should also be legal.

Multiple marriages - yes. If everyone is consenting, there is no reason why it shouldn't be allowed. Marriage to things - no. 'Things' cannot consent.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@nakanoguy01

I think you are referring to the Article 14th of the Japanese Constitution... "amendment" in Japanese is "kaiseihou".

Because if you referring to the "14th amendment" that is, probably, how the US refers to their constitutional articles....

Speaking of it... the 14th amendment (US constitution) is states somehow something similar to Article 14th (Japanese Constitution).... still the US government (regional governments) has taken "legalize" same sex marriage.

Regarding "multiple" marriages, if there is a need and a required by the people/society/creed... so on, then eventually should be legal. Regarding the "marriage to things"... I think there are already some cases around the world...

Multiple marriages... as much as that may see appealing (I am a male after all), is not viable and quite honestly not my thing, I suppose that may apply to many of us? (hopefully) Marriages to things... it is a stupid thing from my point of view.. but we as human being are free, our freedom is only bordered by others people freedom. If a person wants to marry his/her teddy bear, and is not affecting my nor others in any way (maybe only annoying me though)... then that person is free to marry the teddy bear. Why do you care?

Don't come to "then it will extend to marrying children", no it wont, the only persons that is sick enough to come to that conclusion, I am afraid, are the same people that are "concerned" by it.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

danalawton1:

" Legalizing same sex marriage is mainly about Rights. The right to receive the same social benefits as hetero marriages. "

I am pretty sure lawyers can set up similar social benefits arrangements for a social union without the societal label of "marriage". But what about the rights of children? For example the right of a child to have a mom and dad, and not some politically correct assembly of people/life forms/objects, depending on how far you want to extend the "inclusiveness"?

" polygamy is no big deal "

I think polygamy is a big deal for the children, and you can ask people who grew up in e.g. fundamentalist Mormon polygaymous societies for their opion about that. But I completely with you that if youapprove of "same sex marriage", you musl also approve of polygamy. More so, in fact, since polygamy is much less radical concept.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Marriage to things - no. 'Things' cannot consent.

Exactly. It can't so no, or yes. But I promise to take care of it for the rest of my life. I love my pet parrot. It's not about morals, it's not about sex, obviously, it's about my equal right to be happy, if you are truly open minded as you pertain to be. Who are YOU to say I can't marry my pet parrot.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

'I am pretty sure lawyers can set up similar social benefits arrangements for a social union without the societal label of "marriage". But what about the rights of children? For example the right of a child to have a mom and dad, and not some politically correct assembly of people/life forms/objects'

What do you mean by 'life forms' and 'objects'? Do you envisage Klingons marrying feather dusters?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I think polygamy is a big deal for the children, and you can ask people who grew up in e.g. fundamentalist Mormon polygaymous societies for their opion about that.

I think the bigger problem is the Mormon part of that equation, than the polygamy part of that equation.

Who are YOU to say I can't marry my pet parrot.

Your parrot cannot consent. Do you think that humans should be able to marry other humans without that other human's consent?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@nakanoguy: marriage (legally speaking) is a form of contract between two entitites. Objects, like tables and chairs, can not make legally binding agreements with people, so no, homosexual marriage is not going to lead to marrying "anything" as you claim.

Same for animals and kids, btw. Can not make legally binding agreements = can not get married.

Your argument is about as daft as claiming chairs will one day buy houses.

Now, some might make the claim of robots...if and when we come to the point that robots are fully sentient and capable of original thoughts like humans...then sure we might have to consider that situation...but here and now rest easy: despite my wildest dreams I can not, in fact, start a polygamous relationship with my wife and that sexy dinosaur hotel receptionist.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Anyways, fortunately you are turning into a dinosaur with your way of thinking, and people will look back at your way of thinking as backwards in a few decades.

Oh, you can see the future, as well as know what people will be thinking after a few decades time? Then please tell me the future lottery numbers so I can hit the big jackpot.

Marriage to things - no. 'Things' cannot consent.

Exactly. It can't so no, or yes. But I promise to take care of it for the rest of my life. I love my pet parrot. It's not about morals, it's not about sex, obviously, it's about my equal right to be happy, if you are truly open minded as you pertain to be. Who are YOU to say I can't marry my pet parrot.

LOL Funny but very logical conclusion. It looks like those defending this issue can't see the holes in their arguments.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Oh, you can see the future, as well as know what people will be thinking after a few decades time? Then please tell me the future lottery numbers so I can hit the big jackpot.

It's a prediction. But I base it on being the same as those in this day in age who would claim marriage between 'negros' and 'whites' shouldn't be allowed, or same as those who claim women shouldn't be able to vote. They are dinosaurs, and the anti-gay marriage folk will be the same in a couple of decades. Our kids will wonder what the big deal was.

LOL Funny but very logical conclusion. It looks like those defending this issue can't see the holes in their arguments.

I think you've got it backwards, it's you guys who cannot see the holes in your argument. As kaynide mentioned, a marriage is an agreement, a contract. How are entities (kids and animals) supposed to enter into a contract when it's impossible for them to consensually do so?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I fail to see why anyone who is not gay should be against gay marriage. It's not going to have any impact on your life at all , unless that is all the people who are anti gay marriage are scared they might turn gay. As for me, I'm happily married and if two fellows want to be so too, good luck to them. None of my business.Everyone should be free to find their own happiness, as long as it doesn't harm others.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Sadly there are some SERIOUS homophobes here on JT. It's sad really, when one stops and thinks about it what difference does it make if some one of the same sex loves someone who is the same, and wants to "marry" them?

How does that affect YOU? Grow the "F" up!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

And as usual many people just don't get humans. They worry about the children. Sure during social change some kids might be picked on for being different.... but kids are always being picked on for being different. Historically in Tribal communities, the whole Tribe brought up children much like a commune. Again it comes down to bigotry and people with narrow minds. What is "normal" to them is the product of their upbringing.... they cannot see past what they saw.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

"In a landmark move last February, Shibuya Ward in Tokyo announced it would begin legally officiating same-sex partnerships, giving gay couples the same rights as married heterosexual couples."

I believe the opening sentence of this article is factually incorrect. Leading to some of what follows also being incorrect.

Aside from what Shibuya and Setagaya have done, or will do, I would be happy to see marriage rights extended to gays and lesbians, polygamists and polyandrists, and whatever other combinations of consenting adults there might be, or rather not necessarily adults but at whatever age heterosexual couples are allowed to marry at. My spouse is Japanese and I am not, and in my own lifetime in certain areas of my own country, we would not have been legally able to marry. It would have been devestating to not have been able to marry, and why would I wish that on others?

But I do draw the lines at parrots (and other animals) because they can't consent and anyway think of the children! The bullying that would be suffered by the poor little half-twitters would be horrible! ;-)

2 ( +3 / -1 )

'Sadly there are some SERIOUS homophobes here on JT. It's sad really, when one stops and thinks about it what difference does it make if some one of the same sex loves someone who is the same, and wants to "marry" them?'

It is unusual that people feel so strongly against this. I remember one writer said that it reminded him of when Dr. Johnson compiled his dictionary and some ladies congratulated him on not including any dirty words. He replied that he was surprised that they had taken the time to look them up.

Interesting.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Some states in USA defy US supreme court decision. So Vegas Marriage Bureau has been busy. Busier than divorce business in churches, too.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@Stephen Knight - As Ms. Tina Turner used to sing, "What's Love Got To Do With It ?"

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why same sex marriage? Why dont they just call it something else like gayrriage

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

@overchanAUG. 01, 2015 - 03:21AM JST Why same sex marriage? Why dont they just call it something else like gayrriage

''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

And Lessiage and lesrriage and lesbriage and ,,,,,,

Linguists will be busy

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Given Japan's dire demographics, anything that promotes homosexuality as normal is dangerous.

Marriage too is something that should always be between a man and a woman.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

What's a homophobe?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Given Japan's dire demographics, anything that promotes homosexuality as normal is dangerous.

Oh, you're one of those people that thinks that if gay people can't marry those who they love, they'll just decide to marry someone they have no attraction to.

Tell me, if you couldn't marry someone from the opposite sex, would you decide to marry someone of your own sex instead?

Marriage too is something that should always be between a man and a woman.

No.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

To be honest, I'll never be able to wrap my head around the idea of two men loving each other. Having said that, I will/nor have I ever....discriminated them. To each his/her own...and nobodies perfect.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Gay and lesbian are not new in Japan. There are even words in Japan. Gay = danshoku. lesbian = joshoku.

Marriage? man marry to one woman and has one or more mekakes.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

To be honest, I'll never be able to wrap my head around the idea of two men loving each other.

It's not an attraction I have whatsoever. But that gives me a grand total of no right whatsoever to discriminate against them. I'm with you on that.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Gay and lesbian are not new in Japan.

But Toshiko, isn't same-sex marriage (and the concept of legality) rather new in Japan?

Marriage? man marry to one woman and has one or more mekakes. Nowadays it's usually just one.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

@Wc626: Hi, I don't think Setagaya is marriage - just recognition. This is my suspicion. Separate schooling of girls and boys encourage homo aexual life in Japan. Just my suspicion.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

A man marry a man, a woman marry a woman! Next will be a man or a woman marry other animals.

It may indeed happen. Japan is definitely "going gay"

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It may indeed happen.

No.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

.........and another domino comes tumbling down.........

0 ( +0 / -0 )

A man marry a man, a woman marry a woman! Next will be a man or a woman marry other animals.

It may indeed happen. Japan is definitely

No...California will be first.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@SchopenhauerJUL. 31, 2015 - 07:58AM JST It is weird. A man marry a man, a woman marry a woman! Next will be a man or a woman marry other anima

''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

Are you writing about your secret desire for a long time??? Sound you couldn't resist go reveal You are first ione commenter.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

This is a very sensitive issue for all because it deals with the very depths of the human person. The dignity of the person trumps behavior unless that behavior threatens the safety of others. I think that discipline is shared by all the great religions and codes of conduct including Bushido. We all must not treat another person like an object for our enjoyment or profit. This requires discipline and a sense of the worth of the other. This goes for all orientations.

How well do each of us succeed? Each one of us needs to address this question daily as we try to love one another in every interaction with an other person. There is intrinsic beauty in each person and this we must all try to find and bring it forth in ourselves.

Regarding the Koseki family registry in Japan, we have one male and one female creating a family with room for children.

The Japanese have been doing it this way for thousands of years as has other traditional cultures. Governments come and go, new ideologies will come and go, but the traditional family will remain as the bedrock of civilization. It is going nowhere and is just part of the natural cycle of things.

Ideally it is very beautiful and the proper place to raise children, in a loving environment. Truly, humanity is made up of two genders to complete the reproductive system in an act of unity and love, ideally. Children are the result of this union, in many cases. Just beautiful and it deserves praise.

However, the world is not ideal.

The SCOTUS decision to allow any person to marry another does have a silver lining. I know a brother and sister who just live together. No funny business, they just share a life together. The brother works and she does the house stuff. If he dies she will not even get social security. They can now marry and she will be entitled to a pension of sorts.

The SCOTUS decision allows ANY two people, who can consent, to obtain government benefits. That is all.

Live and let live.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@sodesuka: Read the article again, Nothing mentioned about marriage. About koseki, the children of husband, if husband admit, shoshi, not claimed shiseiji That diference used to be if husband promised "I will on have ... as my mekake" etc At arranded first neering (omiai) future husband was supposed to promaie he will only have 3 mwkakes etc depending wealth of him. I was in a cokkege so I asked my HS classmates. They said they hir by their book. I knew it could not be Calculus book and they all said a book by Nobuko Yoshiya.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I wish the whole world would follow suit!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

In Showa era they call DouSeiAi

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think you've got it backwards

No

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Suddenly, we are being forced to accept homosexuality as a norm... What happen to,'Don't ask, don't tell?'

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@diuneahmaAUG. 03, 2015 - 04:38AM JST Suddenly, we are being forced to accept homosexuality as a norm... What happen to,'Don't ask, don't tell?'

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You must be a Japanese who lives in Setagaya. Sell your house and move to somewhere else in Japan that says don't ask don't tell place if you can find.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

toshiko..sounds like you should move to San Francisco get out of Japan..

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@toshiko - don't get me wrong, I can tolerate homosexuality if it is not too publicly overt (we can be colleagues or aquaintance) But I still cannot accept it personally. I just wished people will stop imposing their views on us folks who think that way...

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I just wished people will stop imposing their views on us folks who think that way...

views like 'don't ask don't tell' or 'don't be overt about who you are'?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Suddenly, we are being forced to accept homosexuality as a norm... What happen to,'Don't ask, don't tell?'

Excellent point!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Strangerland@ - Let's just say I'm the sort who will cringe when I see two gay men kissing...

But I have to add that on a professional level, I have no discrimination against homosexuality

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

But I have to add that on a professional level, I have no discrimination against homosexuality

Precisely. We are of one mind

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Let's just say I'm the sort who will cringe when I see two gay men kissing...

Some of them cringe when they see heterosexuals kissing. Should heterosexuals also keep it contained? Not ask and not tell?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@True OkinawaAUG. 03, 2015 - 08:12AM JST toshiko..sounds like you should move to San Francisco get out of Japan..

'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

No I am not interested co move fo your city

af xx

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Japanese respect tolerance to a point. This is to much...Toshiko you love your country and so do I, but this is to much...this is not progress, it's confusion..It's lust and sex, not love...get over it...call us homophobes..we will call you other things..such childish behavior..lost souls...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I'm really enjoying reading the comments from people like shopenhauer, christopher glen (beck?) and trueokinawa. It's like watching the circus freak show put on by the republican candidates so far - their own narrow-mindedness and freakiness makes it so enjoyable. You don't need to fire back because you know they're scraping the bottom of the barrel when the argument veers towards 'marriage to animals'. The US now permits SSM. Perhaps these bitter folks could find sanctuary in a muslim country.

To quote McD, I'm loving it!

AU user:

Marriage does includes COVENANT with God. Marriage in the eyes of religion and God, always mentioned the conjuntion "AND". ... that is Marriage have SEXUAL actions, PROCREATION (unless otherwise a mom cannot conceive due to medical reason) and REARING CHILDREN as them (parents are also children of GOD).

So, let me get this right - atheists and even people of other religions aren't allowed to get married then? How about infertile couples (pass the message onto Abe and his wife, and also twice-married Angela Merkel)? And couples who have no intention of having children or couples in their eighties (where the husband can't get it up).

And who am I to say that there was something weird about Anna Nicole Smith's marriage to her 'elderly boyfriend'?

parents are also children of GOD

Oh puleeez, spare me the sermon. I'm an atheist, and yeah, don't really care if you think I'm going to burn in hell. That's your problem.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

@TRUE OKINAWAN; Why you are accusing me?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It's lust and sex, not love...get over it...call us homophobes..we will call you other things..such childish behavior..lost souls...

Exactly.

It's like watching the circus freak show put on by the republican candidates so far - their own narrow-mindedness and freakiness makes it so enjoyable. You don't need to fire back because you know they're scraping th

One, I'm not republican (I support gun control and union empowerment) But on this issue I find myself in opposition. Civil partnerships provide adequate freedom. Marriage, in its truest sense, is between men and women. Gay marriage ceremonies - likely by necessity - will follow a different format from the norm. Why then do they insist on taking the word "marriage"? I'm happy not to be a homophone.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

I don't think it will be marriage in Japan. Just recognition of open secret of danshoku and joshoku for centuries in some place in Japan that hates to reduce tax income..

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Possibly

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

'Japanese respect tolerance to a point.'

You do not speak for Japanese people and the point you draw belongs to you, not the people of Japan. Get into the habit of using 'I'.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

'Japanese respect tolerance to a point.'

'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

????? Do we?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Jimizo and Toshiko, don't forget neither do "you"

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

WoooHoooooo!!!

Oh wait, I'm straight. Never mind.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Jimizo and Toshiko, don't forget neither do "you"'

I didn't imply I did. I made a statement of fact - I know many Japanese people who don't share your bigotry. I repeat, you do not speak for Japanese people.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It's lust and sex, not love

If it's not love, then why do they want to get married? What heterosexual couple ever got married purely out of lust and sex? I suppose it has probably happened, but it would be in the extreme minority of marriages. Why would you think homosexuals would be any different?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

If it's not love, then why do they want to get married?

It's what civil partnerships are for.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It's what civil partnerships are for.

1) You didn't answer the question.

2) It's what marriage is for.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

People can argue all they want about "redefining marriage". To me it is, and always will be - the fulfillment of a man and woman's relationship. Personally I'd be happy enough for LGBT couples to have civil partnerships. It has been agreed before that if these couples wish to wed then it is unlikely they will be having a marriage ceremony in the normal sense of the word. Why then do they even need the word "marriage"? Civil partnerships give them what they need, and protect the sanctity of what others have. Especially the right of every child to be raised by a mother and father

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

People can argue all they want about "redefining marriage". To me it is, and always will be - the fulfillment of a man and woman's relationship.

Good for you. Too bad for you, there is nothing that actually makes your definition any more real than 'the fulfillment of two people's relationship'.

Personally I'd be happy enough for LGBT couples to have civil partnerships.

And they'd be happy to be married.

It has been agreed before that if these couples wish to wed then it is unlikely they will be having a marriage ceremony in the normal sense of the word.

No, it has not been agreed.

Why then do they even need the word "marriage"?

Because they are marking a lifelong commitment to each other, aka 'marriage'.

Civil partnerships give them what they need

So does marriage.

Especially the right of every child to be raised by a mother and father

That right only exists in your head. Well, and that of other bigots as well.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

No, it has not been agreed.

Good luck to them finding a church then. Japan has "wedding halls" though that I'm sure will accommodate

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Good luck to them finding a church then.

1) What does a church have to do with it? I'm married and with the exception of the Sagrada Familia, I haven't been in a church in maybe 20 years.

2) Why would any gay person want to get married in a church, when the religion discriminates against them?

It's like saying about muslims who want to get married 'good luck to them finding a church'. It's entirely irrelevant to the conversation.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

normal sense of the word.

And hence your confirmation of my earlier point. Thanks.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I don't support gay marriage and never will.

Part of me though is not overly keen on dictating to others how to lead their lives. In countries with healthy demographics, we can probably give some ground on this.

Given Japan's dire demographics, anything that encourages homosexuality is not a good thing.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@Strangerland The Anglican Church doesn't discriminate against gays, and there's one right here in Osaka

http://boingboing.net/2009/10/30/wee-english-church-r.html

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The Anglican Church always follows which way the wind blows. @akula: reasonable points

0 ( +0 / -0 )

normal sense of the word.

And hence your confirmation of my earlier point. Thanks.

You seem to justify 'normal sense of the word' as being a Christian wedding. Christians are the minority on this planet, and therefore a 'normal' wedding is not defined as a Christian wedding. It's one type of wedding, one of many types of weddings. Gay marriage is simply another type. No more or less normal than a Christian wedding.

Given Japan's dire demographics, anything that encourages homosexuality is not a good thing.

Are you one of those people that thinks that gay people, when denied the opportunity to marry those who they love, will instead choose to marry someone they have no attraction to? Let me ask, would you do the same if the situation were reversed? If you were not allowed to marry someone of the opposite sex, would you choose to marry someone of the same sex instead?

@Strangerland The Anglican Church doesn't discriminate against gays, and there's one right here in Osaka

Interesting, and good on the Anglican Church.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Are you one of those people that thinks that gay people, when denied the opportunity to marry those who they love, will instead choose to marry someone they have no attraction to?

Nope. That's what civil partnerships are for. And while I can't imagine the situation being reversed, I would never want the current definition of marriage changed. (Standard marriage = bride walks up the aisle on her father or relative's arm. Meets the groom at the front, then the ceremony commences. This tends to happen in either a church or some kind of garden) I'm sure there will be plenty of Anglican celebrants around to perform gay ceremonies - and there will be plenty of non-Anglican celebrants who won't. I've said my piece, and my opinion - which will not change. Over and out

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Nope. That's what civil partnerships are for.

No, it's what marriage is for.

And while I can't imagine the situation being reversed, I would never want the current definition of marriage changed.

Too bad for you that the world is changing, and there isn't much you can do about it.

Standard marriage = bride walks up the aisle on her father or relative's arm. Meets the groom at the front, then the ceremony commences. This tends to happen in either a church or some kind of garden

That is not a standard marriage. It is what happens in less than half of marriages worldwide. I am married, and literally none of the things you mentioned happened in my wedding.

I've said my piece, and my opinion - which will not change.

I know it won't, I'm just pointing out that you are wrong, and soon to be a dinosaur.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Nope. That's what civil partnerships are for.

No, it's what marriage is for.

And while I can't imagine the situation being reversed, I would never want the current definition of marriage changed.

Too bad for you that the world is changing, and there isn't much you can do about it.

Standard marriage = bride walks up the aisle on her father or relative's arm. Meets the groom at the front, then the ceremony commences. This tends to happen in either a church or some kind of garden

That is not a standard marriage. It is what happens in less than half of marriages worldwide. I am married, and literally none of the things you mentioned happened in my wedding.

I've said my piece, and my opinion - which will not change.

I know it won't, I'm just pointing out that you are wrong, and soon to be a dinosaur.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” R.W.Emerson.

I will continue to stand by what I believe in, even as the rest of the world drifts like sheep from one new trend to the next

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Jimizo wow what a refreshing comment to know you don't respect other peoples opinions, but you expect everyone to respect yours. I again say "you also don't represent the Japanese people either". I also know many, many Japanese who don't share your warped version of what you believe marriage is and LGBT is not it. The abbreviation doesn't hide the fact it's sexual...not love...thank goodness for free speech..

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I will continue to stand by what I believe in, even as the rest of the world drifts like sheep from one new trend to the next

And you have that right! Same as racists have the right to be racist, sexists have the right to be sexists, and ageists have the right to be ageists.

I personally wouldn't want to keep that company though.

The abbreviation doesn't hide the fact it's sexual...not love

Really? So heterosexual only refers to sex, and not love? So you as (I assume) a heterosexual also have the capacity to love those the same gender as you?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Don't be paranoia yet. It is not marriage. Just recognition of danshoku and joshoku habit people in the ward. Somebody else's habit anyway.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

hello Toskiko. You're following this topic and you have a lot of knowledge about japan's customs, laws, family laws etc Are you paranoid? Do you think Japan will legalize same-sex marriage anytime soon (say within 3-4yrs) or will society, as a whole, continue rejecting it?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It seems they can do this without major obstacles. Japanese people doesn't hate LGBT, just doesn't care so much about it. If the government tried to change the law in favor of LGBT, they could do it with very little effort.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Hi Wc626: I ; believe tnat separation of girls and boys since Jr HS encourage Danshoku and Joshoku. But will never go on marriage/ When I was in HS I openly said My girls College recommended Univ in Calif saying if you like boys goto Univ in Calif. I don;t think marriage in Japan. Notice girls do not want marriage in Japan. Maybe after marriage they still lkeep old habits?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Gays, lesbians, family? Ok a couple, but not a family. They love each other? What's love? Here today, gone tomorrow? Love is meant to grow and multiply. The quality of love multiplying requires descendants. Blood. Genetic. Just as we all ended up here. Want to change the laws to make things easier? That's one thing. Family starts with 2 but it grows to include blood descendants as far as possible. I have gay & lesbian friends; however, I don't hide my feelings, but I don't reject the people, either. I feel the LGBT movement is not about rights or laws but about settling down. Most gays and lesbians I've met have not found peace of mind. They're still combative inside. That to me says a lot. Maybe we need more education on both sides of the table.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

They love each other? What's love? Here today, gone tomorrow? Love is meant to grow and multiply.

So infertile couples, and/or those who do not want children, don't actually love each other? Give me a break.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

I know any number of people who have lived as heterosexuals and had children, and then later in life gone into a same sex relationship. There are many people in gay relationships who are also capable of having heterosexual relationships.

In a country with Japan's dire demographics, encouraging homosexuality by legalising gay marriage would have a small but nonetheless negative impact on the birthrate.

Japan's demographics, combined with an extremely aggressive neighbour in China, mean a real risk to Japan's future security.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The homosexuals are very active in every forum and expressing their rights and privilege. They already have it. No need to charge or accuse those who oppose them as bigots etc etc because nobody is giving them the right to declare that those who oppose them are bigots and their new idea is the right one for this new era. They have rights and privilege already at work and in society but "Same-Sex Marriage" is too much. As I have said before, some of my uptakes were erased by the admin, homoseaxuals dreaming of marriage as emulating the BIOLOGICALLY-OPPOSITE side has some form of mental disorder.

The only reason they want to have same-sex marriage is LOVE which is a very vague thing. They never think that there was/were SUPREME BEINGS who designed the wonderful human anatomy. Imagine that, God had created the greatest human anatomy, one example is that clitoris and g-spots are created inside women's organ. And these some homos are dreaming that they have them inside their anus, imagining the pleasure of sex. They let the tadpoles swim over human dumps and sheyts. Another God's wonder is the mammary gland. That is the wonder of being a woman. Men who are imagining and using these glands for pure sexual fantasy, and nothing else really need medications. I recommend ANDROCOR TABLETS for these homos.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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