Such a warm welcome in Oman - if you are not gay

So that's the human rights problems in Oman sorted. Next stop for gay rights campaigner Joyce DiDonato's Drama Queens tour is Singapore tomorrow evening (May 4). Where, and no apologies if this is becoming repetitive, under Section 377A of the Singapore penal code, men who engage in "gross indecency" privately or publicly can be jailed for up to two years. Hopefully a stunning theatre, captivated audience and wonderfully warm welcome, together with a sycophantic global music press, will sort that little problem as well. This should be the last post for a while on the subject as from Singapore Ms. DiDonato's road show goes on to three concerts in China, where homosexuality was decriminalised in 1997. However, other human rights infringements in China, which include press censorship and the banning of human rights organisations, should be of concern to any outspoken defender of personal liberty. Freedom of expression is a major preoccupation for classical music in general and Joyce DiDonato in particular. So it should be noted that China ranks 175th out of 180 countries in the Reporters Without Frontiers' index of press freedom; while the much protested against Russian Federation manages a still unacceptable but significantly less worse ranking of 148th.

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