-Urgent Plea for Support and Solidarity of Lai, J.J., owner of Gin Gin Gay Bookstore
Please write in support of Lai, J. J., owner of Gin Gin Gay Bookstore, Taipei
Initiated by: G/SRAT (Gender/Sexuality Rights Association, Taiwan)
We are writing this urgent plea for support and solidarity as Taiwan・s only gay bookstore struggles through the court system against unreasonable obscenity charges that threaten to dampen our rights to freedom of speech and expression.
Gin Gin・s regular shipment of 200 copies of legally imported male body magazines from Hong Kong was seized at the Keelung dock in March 2003. In August, police from the dock precinct raided Gin Gin and confiscated more replica chanel handbags than 500 copies of similar publications. At the moment of the raid, the journals had abided by all ordinances regarding adult publications: not only did the journals bear warning signs regarding its adult content but also had plastic wrappings to prevent accidental viewing by minors. Signs were also posted all around the bookstore warning customers not to tamper with the wrapping.
The Keelung District Court then charged Gin Gin・s owner Lai under Criminal Code Article 235 for the dissemination/distribution of obscenities. When Lai went to court in June 2004, lesbian and gay groups rallied in support but were blocked from even entering the court building. The court behind closed doors, ruled, despite contestation by Lai・s attorney, that the said confiscated journals are to be sent for review by a notorious censorship NGO that has been known to persecute sex radicals. The review opinion came back recently: as this NGO considered even pictures of erect penises as ：unnatural； sights, it deemed most of the copies seized as obscene materials, subject to a sentence of two years with a fine of US$30,000.
At the second court appearance in March 2005, gay activists and gender/sexuality activists who went to court to hear the case were subjected to thorough searches as if they were terrorists, and then were again blocked outside the court room. Inside, Gin Gin・s owner Lai valiantly rebutted the review opinions point by point and educated the court about gay culture and gay images. The court will meet again on April 19 to hear Lai・s final argument before delivering the final ruling.
As the whole case is a blatant example of homophobic persecution, and the court has consistently closed its door to anyone other than Lai and his attorney, we are in dire need of replica louis vuitton handbags international support to apply pressure to public opinion so as to prevent this case from being silently sacrificed behind closed doors.
Please address your letter of support to:wedding tents
THE TAIWAN KEELUNG DISTRICT COURT at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please send a copy of the email (subject: We Support Gin Gin Bookstore) to G/SRAT at email@example.com and Lai J.J., owner of Gin Gin Bookstore, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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