P!Live2013年 Albie Sachs 與 Kenji Yoshino 對談同性婚姻 (3/3)

俗稱同婚法案的〈民法部分條文修正草案〉近日在立法院審議,引起朝野黨團,以及民間贊成、反對聲浪的高度爭辯,今天開始也將陸續舉辦公聽會。

這些爭辯並不缺乏他山之石可以為錯。2013年12月11日,南非前大法官 Albie Sachs (奧比・薩克思),和紐約大學講座教授 Kenji Yoshino,在蔡瑞月舞蹈社就同性婚姻的議題進行對談。

PNN日前已刊出本場座談前兩段影音。在公聽會舉辦的今天,刊出最後一段。在這當中,輪到 Albie Sachs 前大法官回答公投、亞洲價值的問題。他也解釋了南非同運者推動平權的歷程。

Kenji Yoshino 教授則回應了爭取進入婚姻體制,會不會反而使得同志運動的基進與多樣性受損等等問題。

 

相關報導:Albie Sachs: 我們要讓本來不被看見的族群被看見

中文

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Albie Sachs: 您剛才已經點出面向與聯結,這已超越了專門知識,這是社會關係的問題,我想今天我的收穫比在座各位更多,因為我可以坐在Kenji旁邊聽他談論這些議題,我與Kenji的看法唯一稍有不同的地方在於公投的問題,我想 人的基本權利是由某些原則組成。

0’34”

而公投事實上是為希特勒所廣泛運用,因此歐洲國家十分不喜歡使用公投,容易受情緒鼓動,將單一議題過度簡化為贊成或反對,但我必須要提到的是權利法案說人民擁有基本權利 ,本質上與多數決定論相衝突,我們不能因為覺得我們會贏就主張要公投,也不能因為覺得我們會輸就反對舉行公投我想您剛才所提到的那些論點,作為說詞是很好,表達得很清楚,以及貴國總統為何這麼關切這個議題,特別是在多數人民已準備好要接受同性婚姻。但提出漂亮的說詞是一回事,了解該議題較佳的發展路徑則是另外一件事。

1’28’’

在南非,我們並不是從同性婚姻合法化入手,我們是從將非陰道性交除罪化入手,一開始從該點著手很重要,因為那是最惡劣,最具傷害性的邊緣化方式,那不僅是針對非陰道性交行為本身,那是……更準確來說是針對從事非陰道性交者,是針對與一般人不同生活行逕的人,這些人的慾望被視為是敗壞的,且必須加以譴責。

所以是從除罪化開始,下一步是平等,待遇的平等。我們有一個與家庭事務有關的案子,該案子是說,有一個人的伴侶想要移民。在南非,如果你結婚,那麼你就擁有某些權利,你不用申請就有權入境且直接就可以有工作權。但如果你是同性伴侶,那麼你不可以擁有這些權利,這就是我們以法律為基礎,一步一步發展的地方。

2’36’’

另一個案子是有關 Kathy Satchwell 法官。她有一個同性伴侶,而 Kathy Satchwell 法官希望在退休金方面,擁有與其他人相同的權利,這是相對容易處理的事情。

02’49”

接著是涉及到領養的問題:一個同性戀法官與她的同性伴侶,共同領養兩個小孩。身為法官的一方先收養,另一方也請求收養,雙方皆主張享有平等的親權。法院一樣沒有太大的問題,因為擁有雙親享受兩人同等照顧的法律上的權利,是符合孩子利益的,也是符合平等權原則的。在這些個別案件上,法院常說我們不碰觸婚姻的問題,但當我們實際上碰觸到婚姻的問題時,涉案方都帶進很多情緒。在這方面有很多的先例,因此人們開始援引前例,我們並沒有引用 Margaret Marshall 法官在麻州的案例。該案在她的庭上是多數,但在美國是少數,我們可以引用南非經驗,並試著去深入去了解它。

在南非經驗中,婚姻有很多種模式,人們也有很多中不同的生活方式,並彼此互相體諒,因此人們會比較容易去接受另一種婚姻的模式。這並不是說我們引進外來的觀念給──我不知道是給哪些人,通常有人會試著要對美國人證明些什麼。但事實上,那真的對美國人來說沒什麼意義。我覺得比較特別的是,現在可以看到,拉丁美洲國家一個接著一個,理論上會對同性婚姻持反對態度的天主教國家,像是西班牙、比利時等,都是具有濃烈宗教背景的國家,他們都接受了同性婚姻。這些國家並沒有因此而崩解,政府也沒有因此而失去政權,而現在 這樣子的情況漸漸地在亞洲發展。

4’40’’

我想要強調,想要很明確地告訴大家,我並不想介入您們對這個議題的辯論,這是台灣的問題,純粹是屬於台灣的問題。我們在南非也有類似的討論,是不是這樣的議題不符合非洲的價值觀,也許我不像個非洲人,但事實上同性婚姻合法化是經過我們的國會通過,都是非洲人投票通過的,當一個爭取自由的鬥士,在監獄裡與另一名同性戀的倡議者關在一起,在那個時候同性戀是違法的,黑人與白人也尚未平等。

這名自由鬥士起身並激昂的,對著非洲國家議會的成員請求,同性戀者也為自由而奮鬥,與我們站在同一陣線,我們難道要說:我們可以有我們的自由,而他們卻不行嗎?因為這番話那位自由鬥士獲得多數支持,這是因為在我們的國家,根據實際上的經驗與實踐,而不是想向世界其他人證明我們是文明的。

5’53’’

就那些常發表非常不友善的言論的人來說,我只能說,盡可能有耐心地以有尊嚴的方式堅持您的權利,不要採取報復也不要用同樣的言語加以反擊,請盡可能這麼做,我是以一個異性戀者的身份這麼說,不要去感覺旁人異樣的眼光,不要覺得受傷,而是去感覺您的訴求的力度有多強,去感覺您將不斷往前邁進,最終贏得法律訴訟,而人們會很快有所改變,很快有所改變,不是透過靜坐抗議,或透過邏輯思考的辯論,而是透過看見。

人類以一種很普通的方式表達他們的愛,這種方式是十分,直接的,我想同性戀者可以很「直」的,這表現在他們的感情或是行為,而他們也有相同的問題,有同樣的心痛,這是人類的共同經驗,而這需要時間,可能您對他們要比他們對您,更加體恤,且不要大聲辱罵他們,不論那些人怎樣傷你。

我回答完了。

 

7’25’’

黃丞儀:剛開始時我說,希望能在9點鐘結束,現在是8點57分,我們面對一個難題,要不要進行第三輪。我想,我們到目前為止的討論,都非常的理性而且有意義,所以我們還是把第三輪進行完,但題目縮減為兩題。因為希望能夠讓不同的意見呈現出來,第一個題目保留給對同性婚姻有一些猶豫、遲疑,或不同想法的朋友,這可能有點像 self-outing。第一輪的三個提問都是對同性婚姻有一些不同的想法,第二輪的討論基本上是另外一邊的提問,第三輪我不希望問題都來自同一邊。我希望第三輪的兩個問題可以呈現兩方面的想法……只有一位嗎,那今天講座的效果實在太顯著了。

 

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提問者一:以下我將用中文 ,我想在美國或南非也有些同志的社群認為婚姻體制會使同志被異性戀 corrupted 或者是被同化了,它可能會傷害同志社群的 diversity,社群本來是可以很 radical 很 colorful 很彩色的文化。兩位在美國或南非,對這些論述的看法是什麼?

黃丞儀:這不曉得是否算是……

提問者一:絕對是疑慮。

黃丞儀:我覺得妳有偷渡的嫌疑(眾笑)。好 第二個問題,對同性婚姻支持想法的朋友。

提問者二:Sachs 大法官說,關係與婚姻裡最重要就是親密和愛,在台灣的討論中,大家對婚姻的想像有很大的不同。剛剛也有朋友提到亞洲價值的問題,根本的是說,在過程中被激化的兩方很快的就拉開:一方認為、只要有愛、有親密關係,就可以進入婚姻;另一方認為,我們有很強的傳統、倫理上的預設價值。這是台灣人自己要去實踐、去摸索的問題,但是在法律上,有怎樣的 venue 來進行思辯而不是用撕裂的方式面對這個問題?

 

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11’48’’

Albie Sachs: 在準備 Fourie 一案的判決時,我發現英語當中最長的單字是,「異性戀正常化思維」。在極端同性戀文獻當中,其中有一些人寫作並表述道我們是否真的想要結婚,婚姻在歷史上一直是壓迫女性的,而現在我們要去承接這樣的關係。那可能對我們會是非常壓迫的、非常侷限的,而這在過去是一個相當具爭議性的議題。對我來說,那是一個同性戀運動當中的議題,由人們來下決定。但即便是具有強烈主張的人們,我想他們最多也只是在警告,呼籲大家重視這樣的議題,而非造成對立。而判決最後表示的是,這是人們應有的選擇權,而否定人們的選擇,無疑是違反憲法的。

12’56”

我會說的確有些人強烈地反對婚姻,那麼我不會說他們正處在婚姻狀態中,但他們已有所讓步,他們了解到那對社會所造成的影響有多大,而這所帶來的意義遠大於訴訟案本身,當非陰道性交除罪化,這不僅對男性很重要,對女同性戀者也一樣重要。因為那解決了群體當中邊緣化,造成的所有問題,因此婚姻如果對現在的關係造成問題,應該針對問題本身解決,這不是因為異性關係所帶來的不平等。

13’42”

我很高興您提出這的問題,因為這完全正確,我們也許會強調,親密與愛在認知上有所不同,而在南非及非洲的傳統上,婚姻與個人家庭之間關係是密不可分的,我想這是必須加以更多思考的地方。同性婚姻會帶來什麼影響?在重新思考家庭連結方面,對同性戀者來說,一開始是生物的愛情關係,之後再加上法律關係,家庭考量等實際情況,人們對與他們相同性別的成員產生好感。這必然可以避免掉一些可怕的情況,就是人們走入一段假的婚姻,原因只是為了迎合公眾對於婚姻的期待。這種關係會造成極度的不幸。我想在這當中,通常是妻子受到主要的傷害。在那些不平等的情況下,孩子在失能的關係裡成長,察覺到天大的秘密,那些不能說破的秘密,他們會覺得缺乏某些東西。也許您問的問題是需要被進一步思考的,在非洲是如此,我想在全世界也是如此,就是同性婚姻對家庭間關係本質的影響,一旦承認同性婚姻之後。

 

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15’28’’

Kenji Yoshino: 謝謝您們提出問題,關於第一的問題,我完全同意 Albie 的看法,賦與個人結婚的權利,並不代表每個人都被迫要結婚,因此在理念上反對婚姻的人,不必然就一定要邁入婚姻,這是第一個觀點。我想在某些情況下,這樣的答案不足以令人滿意,因為我想更細緻來說,站在同性戀理論這一邊的人會主張,行為群聚效應,也就是說,一旦同意人們結婚,人們就會成群地邁入婚姻,而其他形式的結合都會被視為是不被尊重的,或是次等的,我想這是我們真正擔心的事。

我對這個問題的思考回應有兩點。一是說:是的,有權利會產生行為群聚效應,但沒有權利同樣也會產生行為群聚效應。因此我們真的必須在要不要將此放入選項之間做出選擇,不論採取何者我們都可能貶抑某些人,而尊崇另一些人,以上是第一點。

16’53

第二點是,我不知是否該提這個 但我已經做過很多訪談,因為我要寫一本書,因此我很有把握地說,我會形容這是有點酸葡萄心理,當我們談到同性婚姻時,回到1970年代,當時沒有人會想到同性可以步入婚姻。事實上我自己本身在1990年代也是如此。要批評婚姻很容易,因為你從未擁有婚姻。這就像伊索寓言當中,狐狸無法吃到葡萄時,牠便說:「喔 反正那個葡萄大概是酸的。」當與步入婚姻的人們討論時,我就做了36份訪談,當中一再聽到受訪者說,我去市政府結婚原本僅僅為了表態,但當我得到結婚證書時,突然之間我非常感動,幾乎要崩潰,因為我並不知道原來我有多麼想要結婚。但因為過去無法步入婚姻,也因為總想著無法結婚對我來說有多痛苦,所以我不願意承認婚姻有什麼好的,因為稱讚那些我永遠得不到的事,對我來說太痛苦了。」以上就是我在訪談中一再聽到的陳述。

18’25’’

我的意思並不是說在今日,在2013年,已經沒有真正的立法與無止盡地反對婚姻的同性戀論者,我並不是說這些人在妄想或神智不清,或其他這類的意思。我只是在說,包括我自己在內,有相當多的一部份人明確地表示,反對婚姻制度,有部份是因為自己得不到,一旦可以得到了,我們就會從這樣的論述走出來,並且大聲地說,我們在情感上是真的很想要婚姻。

19’05’’

針對您的問題,如果我理解正確的話,是在問說:婚姻並不是個人之間的親密聯結,而是更廣泛的家庭的概念?

 

提問者二:我要問的是,我們究竟有多少選項,或是在保守觀念當中,對於婚姻應該是什麼、有多少的論述,以及,我們基本上相信,親密行為與愛應該是,婚姻當中很基本的事,但重點在於有關法律拘束力的問題。

 

19’43’’

Kenji Yoshino: 很好,我想從兩方面來討論公民論述的問題,一是 Albie 所說的。我必須說,我從 Albie 那裡學到的一向多過他從我這裡學到的,所以他剛才所言太客氣了。我們之間大部份都是我在向他學習。我想提出一個刺激思考的角度來結束今天的討論。首先 正如 Albie 所說的,這是心理上習慣的問題。我之前有用過這樣子的說法:那是你選擇要如何自持的問題,而不是在思辯的過程是如何辯明或不堪。你不能控制別人的行為,但你可以自我控制,因此,你必須往自己願意持續討論的方向走。也就是說,你必須要文明一點,同時必須要有禮貌、體貼且專注,從人的角度盡可能的程度,這樣的態度比說什麼還有說服力。即便最後沒有成功,你還是真實的自己,這是第一點。

20’56’’

但我想以兩個較極端的看法來總結,一是:我認為這些爭辯跨越了分岐。我會這麼說,因為在爭辯中我看到一些好的面向,兩個完全相反的脈絡。很矛盾地,一是審判的脈絡,因此事實上,人們是處於文明審判當中。我研究且一直在引述這個12天辯論,我驚訝於該論述是如此的文明有禮。我所聽過的一些商業案件的言詞辯論都過於斤斤計較,也過於尖酸,遠不如在舊金山那關於婚姻的辯論。Told Olson 與 Chuck Cooper 兩方律師最後彼此擁抱。在那之前,雙方每天都針鋒相對。作為一位法與文學研究者,我常說這就像是福爾摩斯與莫里亞蒂,因為唯一對這個案子鉅細靡遺地了解的人,便是反對你的那一方。因此事實上你會感覺與他們是緊密聯結的,在其他人身上不會有這種感覺。

22’07’’

撇開玩笑話,那次辯論是彬彬有禮的典範,我想這樣形容該次辯論是實至名歸,因為在其中有我所謂的賦予拘束力的文字紀錄。更重要的是,法官在其中扮演仲裁者的角色,防止雙方的辯論向下沉淪到不可收拾的地步。因為什麼會導致我們變得不禮貌?我們會不禮貌 是因為我們害怕,害怕假如我們變得不禮貌,害怕假如我們彬彬有禮、而另一方是不禮貌的,那將使我們處於劣勢;他們將會在言詞上勝過我們;假如我們在電視上,他們就會佔據所有的播出時段;在學術爭辯中他們會壓倒我們。

而在審判當中,對方卻不能這麼做,因為法官會阻止情況落入不可收拾的地步,因此,判決的文字紀錄就像是公民論述的典範,也因此我寫了一篇文章稱之為文明的審判,其中將文明這個詞特別括號起來,並且與禮貌這個意思是雙關。其精準地形容這個很棒的爭辯過程,是一個有組織、有明確方向的爭辯,這是一個典範。因此我會將這個審判視為是比其他我所經歷過的學術爭論更文明的爭辯,我會將之視為是比我所聽過的立法爭論更文明的爭辯,也會將之視為是比我在任何大眾媒體上所聽過的爭論更為文明的爭辯,因此我將之視為是一個典範。

23’30’’

我想另一個典範是另一方的極端,也就是極度親密的典範。也就是說,當你向家庭成員訴說,當你向好朋友訴說,由於充滿著愛……這樣的情感在彼此間建立。

而顯然在上述兩者當中,我傾向是後者緊密聯結的關係。如果你納悶,為何同性戀運動會進展得這麼快速,比起其他運動還快,那是因為每一個延伸家庭,不論他們知情與否,都有一個同性戀的家庭成員,一旦該成員勇於出櫃,這個家庭就必須面臨抉擇:是要失去他們所愛的成員,並對所有成員或自己造成傷害,或是要敞開心胸並接受一切。這與種族間的公民權利運動很不一樣,也與日本的社會運動很不一樣。這並不是那些你能夠將之放在社會邊緣的少數,並認為這跟我們沒有關係,因此我認為這是另一個親密關係的典範。

24’38’’

我想當我……關於我與我父母之間,當我向父母訴說這件事時,我說──我們都喜愛文學、所有我們的家庭成員都喜愛文學──在希臘神話故事中,有一個鮑西絲與費萊蒙的故事,這是一個家喻戶曉的故事。故事描述在一個罪惡的城市裡,住著兩個善良的人。那是一對夫婦,他們非常貧窮,所以神去拜訪他們,儘管神穿著像乞丐,他們仍受到很好的對待──神打扮成乞丐。最後,神問這對非常貧窮,但很相愛的夫婦說,我要給你們一個願望。那對夫婦說,我們希望能在同一天死去,如此便不用承受沒有對方的日子。

我的父親……很有趣,因為他常跟我母親說,我希望比你早死去,所以我告訴我父親,這就是我對 Ron 的感覺,而這就是他所感受到的感覺,因為我想這也是我們對我們的孩子所許的願望,不論我們的性向為何,這就是我們對朋友所許的願望。我們希望,他們都能找到那個,無法想像失去他生活會變成怎麼樣的另一半,謝謝!

 

26’20’’

黃丞儀:我們花了很多的力氣準備這場活動,這兩位分別要從南半球與北半球飛到台灣,一位從美國、一位從南非。這個國家同樣也要花很多的力氣與時間,去面對同性婚姻的議題。如果今天的對談是可能的、今天的對話是有意義的,未來在台灣,同性婚姻的議題也可以像今天的對話一樣,和平理性的展開。

結束之前請大家一同感謝,今天在這邊提供服務的工作人員。天氣很冷,他們在外面(鼓掌)。也謝謝大家來參加今天的活動,我們活動到此為止,但對話會繼續下去,謝謝大家。

英文字幕校訂版

capture-20161122-210050

Albie Sachs: You just pick up dimensions and connections
It’s not only an expertise
It’s seeing the connections
So I think I’ve probably benefited more than anyone in the audience
From sitting next to Kenji while he’s been talking
The only slight point of difference I have is
The way the dealt with the referenda
I think the very notion of fundamental rights
Raises different principles altogether

 

0’34”
And referenda in fact were used by Hitler
And Europe has a strong dislike of referenda
plebiscite, emotions
Single issues narrowed down to yes or no
But I feel the very notion of saying that there is a Bill of Rights
Have fundamental rights is by its very nature
Potentially counter majoritarian
And you shouldn’t slip into we’ll have a referendum if we’re going to win
But we won’t have a referendum if we’re going to lose
I think you’re making a very good rhetorical point
That you know what is you might be saying
Why is your President so concerned
When in fact the majority of people are already moving
In that direction
But it’s one thing to make a rhetorical point
And it’s another to see it as a proper way to go

1’28’’
In South Africa
We didn’t start with same sex marriages
We thought it was decriminalizing sodomy
It was very important that we begin with that
That was the most vicious, pernicious form of marginalization
And it wasn’t simply the act of sodomy
It was as…the judgment I wrote made clear
It was the sodomite
It was the person who lived a life differently in a manner
In which his in that case desire
Was seen as somehow tainted and had to be repudiated
So you begin with decriminalization
The next step was equality
Equal treatment
And we had the home affairs case
Where the partners of people who wanted to immigrate
If you were married you had certain rights
You didn’t have to apply outside the country to come inside
And you could get a work permit straight away
If you were a same sex partner you didn’t have that benefit
And that’s where we developed quite a lot of the law on that basis
And then we had other cases of a judge Kathy Satchwell who had a lesbian partner
Wanted to have the same rights in terms of pension rights
That was relatively easy one
Then when it came to adoption
A lesbian couple also a judge and a partner adopted two children
Well the judge adopted and her partner said but I am an equal mother
And I want equal parenting rights
And the court held again without much difficulty that
It’s in the interest of the children to have both parents available
and with equal legal access and rights toward them

03’17”
And also in terms of equality principle
And so by the time…in each case we often say that
We’re not reaching the question of marriage
But by the time we reached the question of marriage
It was very very emotional
Or really there was this long line of precedent
So when it came to quoting precedent
We didn’t quote Margaret Marshall in Massachusetts
A majority in her court
But a minority in the US
We were able to quote South African experience
And we tried to root it in South African experience
Where we had multiple marriage forms
And people lived their lives in different ways
And everybody understood that
And it made it easier to understand this just becomes another form of marriage
And it’s not something we’re importing to prove to the
I don’t know to whom
Normally one is trying to prove something to the Americans
But that really wasn’t anything to the Americans
What I find very striking now is being able to see
Latin American countries one after another
Supposedly against…these Catholic countries have adopted
Same sex marriage
Spain, Belgium these countries have adopted…
With very strong religious backgrounds have adopted
And countries haven’t collapsed
Governments haven’t been voted out of office
So it now…now it remains to be see what might happen in Asia

4’40’’
Now I just wanted to say that I am not
And I am saying this very expressly
I’m not intervening in your debates here
This is very much a Taiwanese question
Very much a Taiwanese question
We hear the same arguments in South Africa
It’s against African values
Now I don’t even look like an African
But in fact it was our Parliament that was overwhelmingly
African that voted
When one of the freedom fighters
Who’d been in prison with one of the gay rights activists
At a time when homosexuality was criminalized
As well as equality between black and white
And he stood up and he made a passionate plea
To the members of the ANC caucus and said
Gay people and lesbian people fought for freedom in the
Trenches with us
Are we going to say we can have our freedom
And they can’t have theirs?
And he got a majority support for that
And that was relying on the actual experience and practice in our own country
Not trying to prove to anybody else in the world
That we were civilized

5’53’’
In terms of the relationship with people
Who come out with
Often very very hostile statements
All I can say is just to be as patient as possible
To stand on your dignity
On your rights
Not to retaliate…not to hit back in kind
Try not if it’s possible
I’m saying this now as a straight person
But try not to feel the slings of the others
Try not to be wounded by it
Try to feel the strength of your claims
The fact that you are advancing
That you will win your legal cause
And that people have changed remarkably quickly
Remarkably quickly…and it’s not through sitting down
Through pure rational debate
It’s through somehow seeing
Human beings expressing their love
In an ordinary way that is so
Straightforward
I guess gays can be straightforward
In their relationships and their behaviors
And having the same problems
And the same heart aches
And that’s a human kind of experience
And it does take time
But maybe you have to be more gracious than they are being
Towards you
And at the same time not to hurl insults at them however
Wounding they might be
That’s it

7’25’’
黃丞儀:I set at the start that we hope to close at 9
Now the time is 8:57
Here is a decision to make: whether we should have the third round
I think our discussions so far are very rational and meaningful
So shall we go on to the third round, but only have 2 questions?
To allow different views to emerge
I’m going to reserve the first question to one who may have doubts about same-sex marriage
This may make it a bit like self-outing, I mean …
The 3 questions in the first round are from those who have reservations
Those in the second round are basically from the other side
I hope the time in the third round can be equally divided
I hope different views can be reflected

(inviting questions)

capture-20161122-204559

9’08’’
Audience member: I’d like to speak in Chinese so my fellows can understand better
I know some LGBT communities, in the US or in South Africa
Are of the view that marriage will corrupt LGBTs
tame them or make them conforming
This might reduce the diversity in the LGBT communities
make it less radical, less colorful
What are your views about this argument, from the US or SA perspectives?

黃丞儀:Are you expressing reservations ?…

Audience member: Definitely doubts!

黃丞儀:I think you’re disguising your support … (laughters)
OK, the second question: people for the same-sex marriage …
(inviting and allocating questions)

Audience member: Justice Sachs mentioned that the most important thing in relationship or marriage
is intimacy and love
In the debates in Taiwan
It’s been clear that people hold different images about marriage
Someone mentioned earlier about “Asian values”
What we see that different views polarize very quickly
One view is that what counts in marriage is only love and intimacy
The other thinks that marriages should conform to traditions and predetermined values
Of course these are questions for the Taiwanese to tackle
But what are the proper venues, in law perhaps, for those deliberations
instead of division and hurling insults

capture-20161122-210532

11’48’’
Albie Sachs: In preparing the Fourie judgement I
Discovered one of the longest words of the English language
Heteronormativity
And that was in the radical queer literature
With some people writing and saying
Do we really want to get married
Marriage has been oppressive to women historically
And now we’re going to take over this form of relationship that can be very oppressive
Very limiting to ourselves
And it was a very seriously argued issue
And for me that was an issue for within the queer movement
For people to decide
But even the people who spoke most strongly in those terms
I think they were more issuing a warning
And a caution than opposing
And what the judgment went on to say was
This is a choice that people should have
And to deny people their choice
Would be profoundly unconstitutional

12’56”
I might say
Some of the most radical opponents of marriage have actually come
I wouldn’t say they’re married now
But they’ve come around to it
They see the enormous impact it has on society
That goes well beyond just the actual cases
When we struck down the sodomy laws
It was important not just for men
But lesbian women

13’19’’
Because it dealt with that whole question of marginalization
Of the communities
Then if it does provide for present relationships
So that’s gotta be tackled in it’s own terms
And not because heterosexual relationships
Gave rise to the inequality

13’42”
I’m pleased you raised that question
Because it’s quite right
Maybe we put very strong emphasis on
The intimacy and the love
As being the area of differentiation on recognizing that
And certainly in South African and African tradition
Marriage is very much about inter-family relationships
And I think it’s an area that needs to be explored
And what would the consequences be
For helping re-conceptualize family connections
In the case of same sex people

14’18”
But there that you’re starting off with
A biological love relationship
And the more that the law and relationships
Families takes in account of that reality
That people are strongly attracted to members of their own sex

14’32’’
It’s certainly avoiding these awful situations
Where people went in for a pseudo marriage
Simply for the sake of conforming to public expectations of what marriage was
And to establishing relationships in producing an enormous misery often
I think usually the wife bearing the major burden
Of the inequality of those circumstances
The children growing up often in dysfunctional relationships
Knowing that the huge secrets
Things have been kept from them
There’s something lacking
And maybe the question you’ve asked is an area that ought to be explored
Certainly in Africa
I’d say all over the world actually
The implications for the nature of
Inter-familiar relationships
Of acknowledging same sex marriages

capture-20161122-205758

15’28’’
Kenji Yoshino: So thank you for those questions
So with respect to the first
I totally agree with Albie in the sense that
Simply because you grant individuals a right to get married
That doesn’t mean that anyone is compelled to get married
So individuals who have ideological objections to getting married
Don’t need to get married
So that’s the first point
I think that that in some cases is an inadequate answer to your question
Because I think the more sophisticated folks on the
Queer theory side would say that
Rights of a channeling function
So that once you allow people to get married
People will flock to get married
And that other forms of affiliation will be seen as
Disrespected or second rate so on
I think that that is a real concern

16’24’’
The way I reason my way out of that is twofold
One is to say
Yes, rights do have a channeling function
But not having rights also has a channeling function
So that we really have to choose
Between whether or not we want to add this
To the menu of options or not
Either way you’re going to be demeaning some people
And respecting others
So that’s point 1

16’53″
Point #2 is that
I hesitate to say this but I’ve done enough interviews
For this book that I’m writing
That I’m actually quite confident in saying this
I think that there is a bit of the
What I’ll call the sour grapes phenomenon going on
With regard to same sex marriage
Which is that back in the 1970s
When nobody could even dream of getting married
And I would actually include myself in this in the 1990s
It was very easy to critique marriage
Because you were never going to get it
So it’s like the Aesop’s Fable where the fox can’t reach the grapes
And so he says “oh the grapes are probably sour anyways”
Whereas when you talk to people who have gotten married
And I’ve done about 3 dozen of these interviews
One thing that you hear over and over again is
I went to City Hall to get married only for political reasons
And when I actually got the marriage license
A wave of emotion just went over me
And I just completely emotionally collapsed
Because I didn’t realize how much I actually
Deeply emotionally wanted to be married
But because this thing was so out of reach
And because thinking about it being out of reach was so painful to me
I wouldn’t allow myself to say anything good about marriage
Because to say anything good about something I could never attain
Was just too painful to my heart
And so that was testimony I heard over and over again

18’25’’
That is not to say that there are not queer theorists today
In 2013 who have genuine legitimate and eternal objections to marriage
I’m not saying that they’re suffering from delusions or false consciousness
Or anything like that
But I am saying that, and I would include myself in this
A sizeable portion of people who articulated
Objections to marriage as an institution
Were doing so in part because it was un attainable
And once it became attainable
We allowed ourselves to come out of disassociation
And to say we really wanted this on an emotional level

19’05’’
To your question about if I understood your question it was really
About thinking about marriage not as an intimate connection between individuals
But thinking about it in a broader familial

Audience member: I’m trying to ask is…
are there how many options do we have to have
Or uh…discourse between the conservative idea…how marriages should be
And uh…basic we believe that intimacy and love should be permitted
As the basis of marriage…and the key is the binding discourse

19’43’’
Kenji Yoshino: Great I can actually think of two venues for civil discourse
So one is I loved what Albie said
And I need hardly say that I always learn more from Albie than Albie learns from me
So he gave me some very kind words
But the learning vector is very much in this direction
I wanna sort of end on a provocative note
So first I want to say what Albie says
This is a habit of the heart
I’ve used that phrase before but
It really is how you carry yourself
And no matter how vindictive or vicious the debate gets
You cannot control other people’s behavior
You can only control your own behavior
So you have to carry yourself in a way that you want the discussion to proceed
So you have to be as civilized
And as courteous and as thoughtful and as engaged
As you are humanly capable of being
And it’s that which is going to be more persuasive than anything else in the end

20’50”
And even if it’s not
You have your own integrity in that
So that’s just the first point
But I want to end with a kind of provocation on either extreme
One is that I think that these kinds of debates across great divides
Is what I would call it
I’ve seen occur in these really wonderful ways
And two diametrically opposed contexts
One is paradoxically the trial context
So the fact that people are in civil litigation
I’ve studied this 12 day trial that I keep referencing
I’m amazed at how civilized the discourse was
I’ve been privy to commercial disputes that are much more trivial
That have been much more acrimonious
Than the marriage trial that occurred in San Francisco
Told Olson and Chuck Cooper opposing counsel hugged each other
Before they argued against each other every day
And as a law of literature scholar I always say
It’s like Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty
Because the only person who understands the case at the granular level
That you understand it is your party opposite
So you actually feel a bond to them
That you don’t feel to anybody else

22’07’’
But all joking aside
That trial is a model of civility
And I think that trials actually do that
Because there is what I call the enabling constraint of the transcript
The judge most importantly as an umpire
Who will prevent this kind of race to the bottom
Because why is it that we are not civil
We are not civil because we fear
That if we’re not civil
If we are civil and the other side is not civil
We will…it will accrue to our disadvantage
They’ll talk over us
If we’re on tv…they’ll get all the air time
For an academic debate they’ll overwhelm us
And in a trial you can’t do that
Because the judge prevents that race to the bottom
And so trial transcript is like a model of civilized discourse
And so I have an article called the civil trial
With civil in quotes
And punning on the sense of civility
Which is accomplished precisely in this moment of great conflict
But it’s organized and channeled conflict
So that’s one model
So I would put out that trial as being much more civilized as any academic debate that I’ve had
I would put it as more civilized than any legislative debate i’ve heard
And any popular media debate that I’ve had on television or other venues
So that’s one model

23’30’’
I think the other model is at the other extreme
Which is at the model of the deeply deeply intimate
Which is to say
When you’re talking to a family member
When you’re talking to close friends across 60 divides
Because there is such a reservoir of love and connection
There is so much built up
And obviously of the two I would much rather have the second
But if you think about why
The gay rights movement has moved faster
And more quickly than any other movement
It’s because every extended family
Whether they know it or not
Has a gay family member in it
And once that individual has the courage to come out
The family has to choose whether to disown this person that they love
And cause great pain to them and themselves
Or whether to actually open their minds and to actually engage
And this makes it different from racial civil rights
It makes it different from the movement in Japan
This is not a minority that you can push off to the margins of society
And say this has nothing to do with us
So I think that that is another model of intimacy

24’38’’
I think that when
For me and my parents
When I talked to my parents about this
I said we both love literature
All of us love literature in my family
So there’s a story in Greek mythology
Of Baucis and Philemon
It’s a very common story about
How there is a very evil city
But then there are these two very virtuous individuals within it
And it’s a married couple
They’re very poor
So the gods go visit them
And they are treated very well even though they are dressed as beggars
The gods are dressed as beggars
And at the end they ask this very poor couple
Who are very happily married to each other
We’ll grant you one wish
And the couple said
Our one wish is that we both die on the same day
So that neither of us needs to know the world without the other

25’32’’
And my father…so funny because he always says to my mother
I hope I die before you
And so I said to him
This is the way I feel about Ron
And that was the way he got it
Because I think that this is what we wish for our children
Regardless of what their sexual orientation is
This is what we wish for our friends
We hope that they find somebody without who life is unimaginable
Thank you.

26’20’’
黃丞儀:
In preparation for today we’ve made strenuous efforts
Think of these two speakers, they have to travel a long way
One from America, one from South Africa
In the same way, to face up to same-sex marriage issues
Taiwan has to make strenuous efforts
But if the dialogue today is possible
is meaningful
I believe our tackling with same-sex marriage
can be like today’s dialogue, so rational and peaceful
Before we close, I’d invite you to thank
the ushers and other colleagues today
It’s cold outside (applause)
I’d like to thank everyone for coming
This closes today’s talks, but the dialogue will continue
Thank you.

 

  • 責任翻譯:宋承恩
  • 前階段協助: 陳盈廷 李柏翰 彭承偉
  • 英文逐字稿: David Chen

 

  • 本對談內容不代表公共電視立場。
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