Australia Got Pretty Creative Just Trying To Keep Out Non-Whites
When the Australian parliament passed the Immigration Restriction Act of 1901, it kicked off the so-called White Australia policy -- a series of restrictions intended to keep the land down under from sporting too nice a tan. Prime Minister Edmund Barton says it best:
I do not think either that the doctrine of the equality of man was really ever intended to include racial equality. There is no racial equality. There is basic inequality. These races are, in comparison with white races -- I think no one wants convincing of this fact -- unequal and inferior. The doctrine of the equality of man was never intended to apply to the equality of the Englishman and the Chinaman.
Central to the Act was the dictation test: If you were a non-European person seeking entry into Australia, you were asked to write out 50 words in any European language before being allowed entry. When it became apparent that this wasn't the most effective way to discriminate against Jews and Commies -- many of whom, annoyingly, spoke European languages -- an amendment in 1905 made it possible for the immigration officer in charge of the test to choose any European language he damn well pleased.
Enter Holocaust-surviving Jewish communist, prolific writer, and (particularly problematic for Australia's immigration policy) polyglot Egon Kisch. When, after trying several other languages, immigration officers finally tasked him with writing out the Lord's Prayer in Scots Gaelic -- a double-dick move considering Kisch was neither Scottish nor Christian -- he couldn't do it. Problem was, Kisch had a powerful legal team behind him. After proving to the High Court that the officer assigning the test was not, himself, proficient in Scots Gaelic, Kisch entered the country for his intended purpose: to go on tour, speaking out against fascism, war, and concentration camps. Because Australia needed help looking bad, here.
There Are A Lot Of Messed Up Tests For Gayness
While the law may not always be strictly enforced, the Lebanese penal code prohibits any sexual act that "contradicts the laws of nature." (Translation: you can get prison time for doing butt stuff in Lebanon.) It sounds like that could be difficult to prove in court, but luckily Lebanese authorities have pseudoscience on their side: the butthole exams -- aka anal laxity tests, an utterly dubious method which involves literally probing a suspected homosexual man's bedroom habits.
Back when the Cold War was keeping Canada even brisker than usual, their government feared that closeted gays in military or civil service were a risk to national security. To aid in a purge of such elements, Canadian authorities employed the shamelessly named "fruit machine." Developed by psychologist Frank Robert Wake, the fruit machine strapped in its subject and forced him to watch gay porn while measuring pupil dilation, pulse, and perspiration, in search of an erotic response.
Honestly, it sounds like an awfully roundabout way to check for a boner.
Czechoslovakia was more direct, where up until 2011, authorities went straight for the dong to verify claims of those seeking asylum from less-LGBT friendly homelands. Before an EU court eventually ruled against the practice of boner-spotting, Czech authorities relied on phallometric testing, which basically amounted to having subjects watch gay porn with a blood pressure cuff strapped onto ol' Mr. Peter Tallywhacker.
Of course, this did nothing to sort out those sinister deviants who just totally got off on medical equipment.
Eyap has written three books; a historical novella, a short story collection, and a horror thriller.
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