“Sissy Camps” in Malaysia

A camp set up to correct the effeminate behaviour of Muslim schoolboys violates the law and should be abolished, says Malaysia’s women’s minister. Sixty-six schoolboys identified by teachers as effeminate began counselling this week to discourage them from being gay. They are undergoing four days of religious and physical education. An education official said the camp was meant to guide the boys back "to a proper path in life".

But the women’s minister, Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, said singling out these children based on perceived feminine mannerisms was traumatising and harmful to their mental health. The camp violates the Child Act, which protects children without prejudice, she said.

Gay rights groups have also criticised the measure, saying it promotes homophobia in the Muslim-majority country where gay sex is still illegal. The schoolboys allegedly displayed "feminine mannerisms" – though educators in the conservative state of Terengganu did not detail what they were. State officials say that, if left unchecked, the students – aged between 13 and 17 – could end up gay or transsexual. Read more…


31 thoughts on ““Sissy Camps” in Malaysia”

  1. if they actually make them illegal they would be one step ahead of america. just saying before the usual islam bashing starts… religious fanatics are a threat no matter if they’re muslims or christians.

    1. I agree. Any religious fanatics or groups belonging to the religious right are a threat to freedom, equality, LGBT rights, and human rights period, no matter what religious banner they hide under.

        1. The crazy right wing Christians in the United States do hold great governmental influence, as do Muslim crazies in other countries.

          1. I didn’t say they didn’t; I mentioned that they wouldn’t be dangerous if they didn’t. Portugal has its own separate christian right-wing party, and the president is gay. It’s funny.

    2. WTF do you think is going on in America that you think that statement is justified?

      We may have our religious and political nuts, but school officials certainly aren’t doing anything remotely close to this.

      1. You’re right – it’s not the schools – it’s the right wing evangalist Christian nutjobs. We call ‘em the “American Taliban.” Thankfully they can only get their hands on a relatively small number of their own kids. Let’s keep it from going any further.

        1. 1968 Epperson v. Arkansas – a United States Supreme Court case that invalidated an Arkansas statute that prohibited the teaching of human evolution in the public schools.

          2008 Association of Christian Schools International v. Roman Stearns- A California Judge ruled in favor of a university’s position that various religious books on U.S. history and science should not be used for a college-preparatory classes.

          2008- the Florida State Board of Education adopted new science standards. The new science curriculum standards explicitly require the teaching of the “scientific theory of evolution”, whereas the previous standards only referenced evolution using the words “change over time.”

          2007, the Kansas State Board of Education approved a new curriculum which removed any reference to Intelligent Design as part of science.

          2005 federal judge John E. Jones III ruled that the Dover School Board (in Dover, Pennsylvania) had violated the Constitution when they set their policy on teaching intelligent design, and stated that “In making this determination, we have addressed the seminal question of whether ID is science. We have concluded that it is not, and moreover that ID cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents.”

          1982 McLean v. Arkansas- the judge wrote that creation scientists: “…cannot properly describe the methodology used as scientific, if they start with a conclusion and refuse to change it regardless of the evidence developed during the course of the investigation.”

          1987 Edwards v. Aguillard, the teaching “creation science” was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, making that determination applicable nationwide.

          1990, Webster v. New Lenox School District- The court found that the school district had a right to restrict Webster to teaching the specified curriculum (which excluded creationism), and that in any case the teaching of “creation science” was illegal, having been ruled to violate the establishment clause in the US Supreme Court case Edwards v. Aguillard

          You were saying?

    1. It’s a “boot camp” to drill out the feminine behaviour, cause we all know that’s THE way to spot the gay…

      And drill in Homophobia, and that they will be outcasts if they “turn gay”…

      It’s undoubtably going to raise the suicide count among young kids/gays…

      That aside what are people doing following a book 2000yrs old, the world has changed… So should the book, laws are being altered all over the world, as old laws can inhibit progress…

      1. yea…I was more making a joke based on how terribly bored the kids look in the photo, but thanks for going all Serious Sam on me.


  2. I found this extremely depressing to see how backward they are, in contrast to their forward thinking economy, and promotion of tourism, etc. Also this:

    “Any gay British minister taking their male partner to Malaysia would be thrown out of the country, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has warned. ”

    They really need to enter the 21st century.

  3. I see no difference between this and the idea that an effeminate boy is a freak of nature and in need of hormones and surgery. The underlying assumption is the same.

    1. You don’t have to be effeminate to be gay, and vice-versa. Just pointing it out. The Malaysian officials are equating the two characteristics based on prejudice and stereotype, naturally.

      While this kind of ‘treatment’ is, in my scientifically and medically uneducated opinion, not going to do anything but harm, I wouldn’t say I face effeminacy in males in a wholly non-judgemental, ‘it’s a matter of differences’ way. My personal experience, limited as it may be, tells me that these are generally softer willed people who end up getting hurt worse by society and their peers. If this is to be changed, of course, it musn’t be through coercive (and especially government coercive) means.

  4. Could we actually remove the reference to any religious foundation for Fanatic? I wasn’t given a choice to be a part of a pilot program that was entering the school that was being developed to help ‘troubled’ kids. (with no real reference to being gay.)

    The so called random selection was total BS. Just looking at the pecking order of the 4 chosen students, one instantly determines that this wasn’t random and was specifically chosen for 4 different archtypes. Even for someone who doesn’t pay attention to that kind of stuff. (a failing of mine.)

    Now, don’t get me wrong, if you like some aspect of Jung; then most of the wasted time was semi-interesting. Unfortunately they couldn’t hide their true message.

    Essentially survivalism. Determining between wants and needs such that when the application is forwarded to life, you determine your actions based on keeping the body alive while removing individuality. Then we went to a hockey game. (some of us anyways.)

    Honestly, the fellow I had most social problems independent from the basic societal system present was there as well. Given meeting him at a different time frame; we probably would of hit it off great.

  5. I was just reading about this before opening this blog. This has got to be the ultimate in effeminophobia which I think is a larger issue than homophobia.

    1. It’s sort of funny you say effeminophobia is the bigger issue because I it’s much easier to feel and experience the homophobia that is all around us and affecting our lives. But even as I was thinking about it, I thought about how it makes me sick how some gay people say stuff like, “I’m gay because I like men,” blah blah blah. It’s sad people can’t be whomever they want without scrutiny. So, yeah, you’re probably right. What a fucking world we live in.

  6. 66 boys spending time together in close quarters and that’s supposed to take their attention away from same sex experimentation? You can bet that like scouting campouts many will have their first sexual experience in such an environment. Rest assired educators in the many red states would love to ship out effeminate boys.

    1. “aged between 13 and 17″
      “many will have their first sexual experience in such an environment.”

    2. Could this account for the boredom expressed in the photo? And these are all effeminant boys. I think I would be in heaven in such a camp. All jokes aside, gay is here to stay. Always has been, always will and no boot camp or religion will change that.

  7. Really sad. Not only is this promoting homophobia, but it’ll likely turn a lot of those boys into victims of bullying and hate, possibly even rape and murder. And for what? They’re not even gay — they’re just boys. Humanity makes me sick sometimes.

    1. Good point. These kids might be effiminent but not gay and yes they are just boys (kids). Notice that no such camps exist for girls (tomboys).

      1. That’s because girls are not valued in Muslim society. Girls that get out of line are beaten into submission, or “honor killed”. No need for retraining.

  8. “They blame parents for encouraging boys to develop feminine traits, by dressing them up in girls’ clothing at a young age. ”

    See, Faux News et al were right, painting your little boys toe nails pink is just the start of the slippery slope.

  9. This article just reinforces the warning that one should never underestimate the power of stupid people in large numbers.

  10. Heh, never thought I’d see my country on this blog.

    But seriously, the camp was shot down the moment it hit the papers. Most segments of the population condemned it, some even on religious grounds.

    It was called unnecessary, a waste of taxpayer’s money (hell yeah it is) potentially damaging to the psyche of these boys, etc. I was surprised at the vehement response, admittedly, but then again for many of us this isn’t a gay rights issue. Its an issue of what’s right or wrong. The religious right-wingers (vote for our party & you’ll be guaranteed entrance into Heaven, not kidding here) digressed, but we agree to disagree with them.

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