Military service is compulsory in Turkey, and enlistment is denied to those deemed too sick, disabled, or gay for service. A small pink certificate listing the reason for exemption is issued; if you are gay, the certificate will read, ''psychosexual disorder'' and ''homosexuality" in brackets next to that.
While gay men are prohibited from military service of any kind, the process for determining and then "diagnosing" them as gay is an incredibly
difficult humiliating and demeaning one. It can take over a year before a pink slip is issued, and once they are, men are often bullied and can lose their jobs. And the alternative—hiding one's sexuality and joining anyway—isn't really an alternative at all.
According to this BBC article, here are some of the ways you must prove you are gay to the Turkish army before you are allowed to take that psychosexual disorder elsewhere:
- Answer questions regarding your preference on football, wearing women's clothing, and/or perfume.
- Maintain a smooth face devoid of facial hair at all times. You must look gay.
- Provide a picture of yourself dressed as a woman.
- Or. Provide a picture of yourself kissing another man.
- Provide explicit sexual photographs in which you are the "passive partner" (see: a bottom).
- Your face must be clearly visible and identifiable in these photos.
- Total compliance with an undefined "personality test," diagnosed by a licensed physician.
[Via BBC, image from AP]