Renowned sexologist and sociologist Li Yinhe (李银河) writes in a recent blogpost on China’s laws against gay blood donors. A group of lesbians in Beijing are now fighting for the right to donate blood:
The rejection of gay blood donors is a grave political error
Recently, a lesbian who went to donate her blood was told her blood would not be accepted. This was in line with China’s blood donation regulations which stipulate that homosexuals may not donate blood. In China, homosexuality is legal. Of all the laws we have in China today, this is the one and only law that is guilty of discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.
This is a discriminatory law, and the guiding philosophy behind that law is wrong.
Homosexuals and heterosexuals have the same blood. Han Chinese and people of other minorities have the same blood. Aryans and Jews have the same blood. The sort of logic that leads to the rejection of gay blood donors is the same logic that leads Han Chinese to discriminate against people of ethnic minorities, and it’s the same logic that leads Aryan people to discriminate against Jewish people. This is one class of people asserting its supposed superiority over another, this is fascism, and this is something that should not be tolerated in any modern democratic society.
The reasons behind this discriminatory law may be that AIDS first exploded among the homosexual male population in Western nations. In the early 1980s in the Western world, men who have sex with men (MSM) accounted for up to three quarters of HIV transmissions. But this was the situation in the West. The situation in many Asian nations today is not the same. For instance, in a report on HIV transmissions that came out of Thailand in June 1995, 66.5% of HIV patients were male heterosexuals, 10% were female heterosexuals, 7% were drug abusers, 6.6% were mother-to-child transmissions, 1% homosexuals, 0.2% botched blood transfusions, and 8.7% of transmissions were unaccounted for [Source: Thailand’s Ministry of Health, Nov 1995]. Our analyses of HIV transmissions in China shows a similar situation to that of Thailand. Homosexual transmission accounts for less than 1%. This figure is now slightly higher, but it’s still about 3%. The Chinese Ministry of Health has published the below data:
MSM transmissions: 0.4% in 2005, 3.3% in 2007
Heterosexual transmissions: 10.7% in 2005, 37.9% in 2007
Given the above data and using the logic that led us to those discriminatory blood donation laws, if we were to assess a person’s suitability for blood donation purely based on his or her sexual orientation, we should be banning heterosexual blood donors instead. Furthermore, it needs to be pointed out that statistics indicate that in the spread of sexually transmitted infections, lesbians not only have a much lower rate of infections than gay men, they also have a much lower rate of infections than the general heterosexual population. In this light, the ban on lesbian blood donors is even more ridiculous.
In any case, whether you’re looking at this from a philosophical or a practical point of view. the ban on gay blood donors is wrong. As a socialist democratic nation, for us to continue to engender Hitler’s discrimination based on ethnic and sexual orientation (Hitler persecuted the homosexuals and threw them in concentration camps along with the Jews) is a serious political error. China’s blood donation laws are a grave and serious political mistake.
The original Chinese post follows right after the jump:
Read more posts on Li Yinhe here.