You can’t call it a reform if the Penal Code excludes the LGBTI

Source: Yıldız Tar. 2014. “LGBTİ’siz TCK Düzenlemesine Reform mu Denir?” (“You can’t call it a reform if the Penal Code excludes the LGBTI”). Kaos GL. June 6, 2014. Accessed June 6, 2014. http://kaosgl.org/sayfa.php?id=16789


Attorney Hülya Gülbahar evaluated the proposed changes to the Turkish Penal Code apropos sexual assault: “This is social engineering. LGBTIs are intentionally being forgotten, ignored. How can one call it a reform while excluding LGBTIs?”

The blanket bill* of changes to the sections of the Turkish Penal Code concerning sexual assault against women and children have been debated quite a bit and are still being discussed. Women’s rights organizations stated that the proposed changes will ease punishment for a number of crimes and will set free many rapists and abusers.

Flirt is becoming a crime

One of the problems under debate is the section of the proposed changes that increases prison sentences for relations between youths aged between 15 and 18. Women’s rights organizations have emphasized that this proposal “incorporates the act of flirting into the definition of a crime.”

The organizations stated that youth flirting and “underage and forced marriages” are two separate issues. “Neither the society nor the laws should be introduced to such a conceptual confusion on this issue. It is a shared responsibility for all of us to protect children from abuse; forbidding youth from expressing sexuality is a conservative policy that would produce new social rights violations.”

In the wake of the debates and the objections to the administration’s attempt at “conservatization” and “social engineering,” Attorney Hülya Gülbahar evaluated the proposal from an LGBTI perspective.

How can one call it a reform while excluding LGBTIs?”

Gülbahar, who noted that while the administration is discoursing about protecting women and children, it is actually enacting legislation in the opposite path, stated:

“Yet again, we are debating the Turkish Penal Code. The administration talks about ‘protecting’ women and children but there is no mention of crimes committed against LGBTI individuals! Yet, the Turkish Penal Code defines and regulates crimes. It is necessary for individuals to be protected from crimes while not being subjected to discriminatory practices. Yet, in this package of so-called “reformation,” there exists not a single word regarding LGBTIs. Just a few days ago,a defendant was rewarded with “provocation” and “good behavior” in the case of a trans murder. How can one call a proposed change in laws “reform”  when it does not incorporate the rights of LGBTI individuals, whose humans rights, including that of freely walking down the street, are being violated systematically?”

The same tune since 2005!

Gülbahar noted how sexual orientation and gender identity were excluded from the 2005 anti-discrimination law proposal:

“We experienced the same debate with the ruling party, the AKP, in 2005. We succeeded in adding an amendment against discrimination against LGBTI individuals to the proposed legal changes after intense struggle and extensive effort. But they removed this amendment from the final revision of that proposal… And so, not only were LGBTIs expunged from protection under the Turkish Penal Code, but also the society received a message that legitimized all forms of discrimination and violence against LGBTI individuals.”

LGBTIs are intentionally disregarded”

Gülbahar, who noted that LGBTIs are intentionally being disregarded, evaluated these practices as the product of a certain social engineering project and added:

“They are yet again effacing the topic in the package of Turkish Penal Code changes being debated in the parliament. This is because the desire is for the continuance of the ongoing discrimination and violence. Indeed, regarding sexual crimes, there exists in this proposal an open ended medicalizing emphasis of “illness” that may lead to surgical castration. With regards to theft and drug-related charges, the punishments are extremely heavy. These are the product of a social engineering project… It is also a necessity of such social engineering to maintain silence on all sorts of identity-based crimes against LGBTI individuals. An intentional forgetfulness/ disregard… A dangerous silence…”


Translator’s Note:

  • “Torba yasa tasarısı / değişikliği,” here translated as “blanket bill of changes,” is a type of proposed changes to laws and regulations on a range of diverse areas, rather than a specific legal issue. In Turkey, as in abroad, this political strategy is employed often when the proposed changes to law include controversial items that would not be approved by themselves or when some changes, often buried into the “bag of changes,” take away certain rights from citizens or enable governmental and/or corporate corruption, while others, often emphasized during the promotion of the “bag,” provide changes perceived to be positive.

The Struggle Against Homophobia: From Illness to Ideology

Source: “Hastalıktan ideolojiye homofobi ile mücadele” (“The Struggle Against Homophobia: From Illness to Ideology,” ) March 25, 2014, http://caylakhaber.com/hastaliktan-ideolojiye-homofobi-ile-mucadele/

İzmir (Çaylak News) –  A panel discussion on “Homophobia from illness to ideology and the struggle against homophobia” was held by the Ege University Philosophy Union. The members of KAOS GL Counseling Commission, Prof. Dr. Melek Göregenli and Prof. Dr. Selçuk Candansayar, and an activist from KAOS GL, Ali Erol, attended the event which took place in the Exhibition Hall of the Faculty of Literature. During the event, topics discussed included the bases of homophobia, body politics, regulation of sexuality and the struggle against homophobia.

Pleasure is a revolutionary intervention

Prof. Dr. Candansayar pointed out that power sanctifies all forms of ownership; the  family, reproduction, monogamy, and private ownership, and also controls society by means of reproduction and added, “We make a revolutionary intervention in power when we offer pleasure without the need for reproduction, knowingly or unknowingly.” Candansayar emphasized that any type of governmental power would desire to control sexuality the most, and said that the way to achieve this goal is to “produce the harmful enemy.”


Are you the one booing? First he was slapped by the PM, then they said he was GAY

Source: Haluk Temel, “Are you the one booing? First he was slapped, then they said he was GAY”, (“Sen misin yuh çeken: Hem tokadı yedi hem de GAY oldu”), Radikal Blog, 18 May 2014, http://blog.radikal.com.tr/Sayfa/sen-misin-yuh-ceken-hem-tokadi-yedi-hem-de-gay-oldu-60183

Two days ago in my blog I wrote that the real catastrophe would involve what we would go through after the blast. I still think so.

Yes, it is true that a massive catastrophe took place under that mine [Soma].

But what about the things that happened above the mine? Were those normal? Kicks, slaps, declarations such as “do not push your politics through the dead”, which were only followed by more politics.

Let us accept the fact that what we have witnessed in the past four days have been as saddening as what happened inside the mine, in terms of social significance. How sad is it that we are split even during a moment of disaster!

All of us are, to some extent, able to vocalize our thoughts and feelings in relation to this accident and the more than 300 hundred people who died. But what about the ugliness that ensued? Are we fully capable of expressing our thoughts on those? No. Even as you try to collect the sentences you are about to form, you experience strain in the creases of your brain. You are unable to form sentences. Because it is harder to talk about a humanity that is dead – or on the verge of dying – than it is to talk about dead bodies!

You may find it easier to comprehend what I am saying when I explain below the last deeds of those who accused us of “involving politics in the matter” when we criticized the prime minister’s slap and his adviser’s kicks.

That group’s most recent accomplishment was to declare that the citizen slapped by the prime minister is “GAY.” They came up with fake photos and spread this news online. One of the people involved in this disgusting scheme is not just a layperson. He is the CEO of ANAR, the main social research company that serves the AK Party, İbrahim Uslu. The infamous puppets of AK Party set out to denigrate the young man who was slapped by the prime minister. For this, they found an image on Google, made a sloppy modification to it and made him look like he was “gay.” The puppets engaged in this deceit in order to motivate supporters of the AK Party. The CEO of ANAR, İbrahim Uslu, offered his support by sharing the photo online. When Uslu saw the fake photo, he added a flashy caption that read, “See who the person is who claims that the prime minister slapped him? Pay attention to the logo on the microphone. They are now in a position to need these people’s help” and he shared the photo on Twitter. He thought he was pleasing the crowds as he did this. Perhaps he wanted to appear to be the man who provided a sneak peak backstage. Who knows?


Tweet by ANAR Research CEO Ibrahim Uslu: “Look who the man who claimed that the Prime Minister slapped him? Look at the logo on the microphone! [referring to TV channel Kanal D owned by Aydın Doğan] They are now in need of these people’s help.”  

Headline reads: “The man who claims that the Prime Minister punched him: Both Taksim and Soma?”

The banner on the left reads: “Even if we are gay,” a widespread slogan for Turkey’s LGBTI community. 


“Faggots, do not organize in Malatya or else it will be bad!”

Yıldız Tar, “İbneler, Malatya’da Örgütlenmeyin Kötü Olur” (“Faggots, do not organize in Malatya or else it will be bad!”), KaosGL.org, 2 May 2014, http://kaosgl.org/sayfa.php?id=16484

On April 29, in Malatya, “unidentified individuals” assaulted and threatened a gay youth: Do not organize in Malatya or else the result will be bad!”

Attacks continue against  LGBTI people’s (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex) struggles for freedom, equality and existence.

A member of the Malatya Youth Initiative Against Homophobia and Transphobia was assaulted by “unidentified individuals” on April 29th in Malatya. The assailants seized the gay youth’s phone and threatened them: “Do not organize in Malatya, if you go further, we are not responsible for what happens.”

“Do not organize in Malatya; we are not responsible for what happens!”

Emir Çoban, the threatened person’s roommate and member of the Malatya Youth Initiative Against Homophobia and Transphobia, told kaosGL.org what happened:

“My roommate left work to go home on April 29th. On his way home, at around 10:00 pm, they blocked his way. They held his arms; they asked for his phone and money. My roommate gave it to them. They then threatened my roommate. They said, “Do not organize in Malatya; if you go further, we will not be responsible for what happens.”


On The Nature of Trans Killings

Source: Dilara Çalışkan, “Trans Cinayetlerinin Niteliği Üzerine” (“On The Nature of Trans Killings”), Birgün, 27 April 2014, http://birgun.net/haber/trans-cinayetlerinin-niteligi-uzerine-13544.html

It should be remembered that those who are responsible for the hate murders of trans people are also responsible for the rights violations committed against women, children, and all LGBTI individuals. They are responsible for the rights violations of any individual who does not conform to the idealized norm of the “Turkish citizen.”

In the last 8 years, 36 news items were published that began with the heading “We are shaken with yet another hate murder!” In the last one year, the number of articles beginning with the heading “We are shaken with yet another woman killing” was 214. These are only the ones we know about, the ones that were reported and officially recorded. We lost count of how many hate crimes are being committed, each one reminding us of the other, each inflicting deep cuts in our hearts, each prompting us to ask “is the next one going to be me?”

And every time, we get back up and say, again and again, that “It’s Enough!”, “This ought to be the last one!”, that we know the killers well. And it is very annoying that we can fully understand who Çağla’s killer is and where he is coming from, who, calmly, comes down the ladders of the building and ties his shoelaces, as shown in surveillance cameras.

It seems that watching how easy it is to end a life reminds us, very painfully, to what extent trans killings and woman killings are political.


No Justice Even On The 16th Court Hearing of the Ahmet Yıldız Case

Source: “Ahmet Yıldız Davasının 16. Duruşmasında da Adalet Yok!” (“No Justice Even On The 16th Court Hearing of the Ahmet Yıldız Case”). Kaos GL. 29 April 2014. Accessed April 29, 2014. http://kaosgl.org/sayfa.php?id=16456

The case of Ahmet Yıldız, whose life was taken in a homophobic murder in 2008, has been postponed to July 8, 2014. The arrest warrant on the offender, his father, is active.

Ahmet Yıldız

Ahmet Yıldız

The 16th hearing for the case of Ahmet Yıldız, who was murdered by his father for being gay, was in the Fifth High Criminal Court in the Istanbul Anatolian Courthouse.

Waiting for Justice for 6 Years!

LGBTI activists who requested to be granted joint plaintiff status were denied by the judge on the basis that they were not negatively affected by the crime in question. The court is waiting for the execution of the Interpol notice and the arrest of the father, the defendant. The board of judges decided, unanimously, to postpone the hearings until July 8, 2014 11:30am.

Prison Sentences for the Cyber Attack on the Website kaosGL.org!

Source: “kaosGL.org Sitesine Yönelik Saldırıya Hapis Cezası!” (“Prison Sentences for the Cyber Attack on the Website kaosGL.org!”) kaosGL.org, 20 March 2014, http://www.kaosgl.org/sayfa.php?id=16112 

Two individuals received six months in prison each for carrying out cyber attacks on the news and association websites of Kaos GL in 2012.

The public prosecution case regarding the April 2012 cyber attacks on the Kaos GL Association’s websites has concluded.

Six Months in Prison for the Two Assailants

A public prosecution case was opened against A.K. and R.V. – both under 18 at the time of the crime, which included tampering with, destroying, or denying access to data in information systems, as well as the insertion of data to the system (Turkish Penal Code 244/3). The offenders were sentenced to six months in prison.

The court case was initiated when the Kaos GL Association filed a criminal complaint against the above-mentioned persons in accordance with items 216, 243 and 244 of the Turkish Penal Code.

The investigation was able to identify the IP addresses used by the attackers. It was also discovered that those using these addresses were the children at these destinations.


Criminal Complaint Filed Against Prime Minister for “Fag” Case

Souce: Çiçek Tahaoğlu, “ ‘İbne’ Davasında Başbakan’a Suç Duyurusu,” (“Criminal Complaint Filed Against Prime Minister for ‘Fag’ Case,” Bianet, 06 January 2014, http://www.bianet.org/bianet/lgbtt/152613-ibne-davasinda-basbakan-a-suc-duyurusu

After Prime Minister Erdoğan made a criminal complaint against Levent Pişkin for his “fag” tweet, Pişkin defended himself by making a criminal complaint against the Prime Minister.

In his statement, Pişkin stated that the word “fag” is not an insult but a sexual orientation and therefore there was no basis for a crime.

Pişkin said, “not only is the word fag not an insult, but even considering the word fag an insult is itself defamation.” The complainant, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, demanded that an investigation be carried out based on Article 125/1 of the Turkish Penal Code for insulting someone about his personality.


“If homosexuality was something that could be treated, a heterosexual person could be turned into a homosexual as well”

Source: Hazal Özvarış, ”Eşcinselliğin tedavisi olsa heteroseksüeller de eşcinsel yapılabilirdi!,” (“If homosexuality was something that could be treated, a heterosexual person could be turned into a homosexual as well,”) T24, 25 June 2012, http://t24.com.tr/haber/dr-seven-kaptan-escinselligin-tedavisi-olsa-heteroseksuel-insanlar-da-escinsel-yapilabilirdi/207036

Before the 20th LGBT Pride Week, we interviewed psychiatrist Seven Kaptan, who has been volunteering as a therapist for the Families of LGBTs in Istanbul (LISTAG) for three years.

“After five hours he told me that he was gay. At that moment, I saw the relief in his eyes. I vividly remember that he stopped crying and was calm. He was relieved but my world turned upside and down. I had felt this kind of affliction when I lost my father years ago… Lost… I lost the son I had known for 17 years.” (Radikal, 2006)

The words above belong to Selma Çizmeci, a member of the Families of LGBTs in Istanbul (LISTAG). Founded in 2008 by the parents of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans children, LISTAG now includes about 130 family members.

The 20th Istanbul LGBT Pride Week will begin on June 25 and and will conclude on Sunday, June 30 with the pride march in Taksim. Aside from working with the family group, Seven Kaptan is an educator-therapist in the Anti-Homophobic Mental Health Initiative and her area of expertise is the issues transsexual people face. We asked her about the fundamental issues of homosexuality and transsexuality.

Dr. Kaptan talked to us about the processes LGBT people and their families go through. Her responses to our questions are below:


AKP Dağoğlu’s Rebuttal of CHP’s Motion to Investigate LGBT Problems

Source: eshmovie, “AKP’li vekil Türkan Dağoğlu homofobi’ye yenik düştü: LGBT denen durum normal dışı bir davranış!,” (“AKP Parliamentarian Türkan Dağoğlu succumbs to homophobia: LGBT condition is a behavior that is outside the bounds of normality,)” 29 May 2013, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qguEWBW2_-w

Deputy President of the Commission on Health, Family, Labor, and Social Affairs, Türkan Dağoğlu’s speech at The Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) on 29 May 2013.

Note: Motion was rejected after parliamentary vote.

First and foremost, as a medical doctor I would like to know what this (being LGBT) is about. I think you would also like to know. Is this a biological disorder? Is it a sociological case? Or is it a psychological condition? Which one is it? We have to first make that decision.

Psychiatric institutions have researched this in 1974 in the USA and in 1992 in Europe and they came to this conclusion: this condition, which we call “LGBD” is a behavior that is outside the bounds of normality. This is not a normal behavior.