Taiwan is all set to become the first country in Asia to legalize same sex marriage, as reported by The New York Times. Currently, Taiwanese lawmakers are working on three bills in support of marriage equality, one of which could be passed within months. Same-sex marriage here has the prominent support of President Tsai Ing-wen, Taiwan's first female head of state.
According to Tseng Yen-jung, spokeswoman for the group Taiwan LGBT Family Rights Advocacy, about 80 percent of Taiwanese between the age group of 20 and 29 support same-sex marriage. Taiwan's United Daily News found in a survey taken four years ago that 55 percent of the public supported same-sex marriage, with 37 percent opposed.
This is seen as a reflection of Taiwan's ready acceptance of multi-party democracy and other inclusive attitudes, as well as the fact that Taiwan's 23 million people largely follow Buddhism and traditional Chinese religions without taking any strong positions on sexual orientation or gay marriage.
Taiwan would join Canada, Colombia, Ireland, the United States and 16 other countries that have legalized same-sex marriage over the past 15 years, according to the Washington, D.C.-based LGBT rights advocacy group Human Rights Campaign .
"It's a big step forward for the history of human rights," said Yu Mei-nu, a ruling Democratic Progressive Party lawmaker who is sponsoring the same-sex marriage bill now in line for parliamentary debate. "If Taiwan can get this passed ... it will give other Asian countries a model."