(GLOBAL POST) — In one respect, the decision by Tokyo Disneyland to allow a gay couple to hold their "wedding" at the theme park is a sign of progress in a country that has, until recently, largely ignored the issue of same-sex unions.
But some campaigners have argued that leaving it to Mickey Mouse to give his blessing to Koyuki Higashi and her partner, Hiroko Masuhara — in a strictly symbolic ceremony — is also a mark of how far Japan has to go before it affords the same rights to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community as it does to heterosexual couples.
Tokyo Disneyland condoned this and all future same-sex ceremonies after receiving an inquiry from Higashi. Cue a confused response from a subsidiary, Oriental Land Company, which licenses the name and characters from Disney in the United States.
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