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3.4. Is homosexuality also a privilege?

39

Is homosexuality also a privilege?

3.4

// Homosexuality may be a crime punishable by death in

the Islamic Republic, but it is also classified as a mental illness and personality disorder. This means that gay Iranian males

have the right to apply for a military exemption based on their

sexuality, an exemption that is but a small reprieve in a lifetime of persecution. Harsh rules, substandard working conditions and non-payment for services proffered to the military

means that a majority of those eligible for conscription are desperately seeking to evade it. Figure 2

“Reason for exemption:

Medical, Article 33, Band 8” is emblazoned on Raham’s

military exemption card.

The picture is available from

http://littledictatorship.files. wordpress.com/2010/10/

untitled-1.jpg?w=426

12

Raha and Raham’s blog Our

Little Dictatorship is available at http://littledictatorship. wordpress.com/

13

Iranian males are typically

prohibited from leaving Iran

when they turn 18.

Their travel rights are not >>

During the course of our research, we came across a blog called Our Little Dictatorship.12 The blog’s authors, Raha and Raham,

share the same birthday but it is not clear whether they are biological or coincidental twins. Raha lives in Belgium and

Raham lives in Tehran. On 27 October 2010 Raham posted a picture of his newly acquired military exemption card (see Figure 2) to Our Little Dictatorship proclaiming excitedly, “It’s Over!” 13 This exemption card is Raham’s pass to freedom. In addition

to not having to undertake 18 months of compulsory military

service, it enables him to travel outside Iran – providing he can

LGBT Republic of Iran: An Online Reality?  

A Small Media report revealing how Iran’s LGBT communities use global communicationstechnology in their everyday lives.

LGBT Republic of Iran: An Online Reality?  

A Small Media report revealing how Iran’s LGBT communities use global communicationstechnology in their everyday lives.

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