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Gays, Muslims, and gay Muslims
25th January, 2006

by Al-Hack

Oh brother. What is with all these Muslim and gay controversies these days? There was a time when Muslims were in the news only for blowing shit up. Or boxing, obviously. How times change.

Watching Gay Muslims on Channel 4 Monday was a revelation. It was also heart-breaking to see these people clearly trying to marry their religion and sexuality with little success. Maybe attitudes will change in ten-twenty years, who knows?

Something struck as a bit odd when reading the statement by the gay group Imaan, who said most such Muslims "do not lead 'tortuous, secret lives' but are happy balanced individuals" and it was all a "patronising myth".

If true why did most participants, including the one from Imaan, have their identity concealed better than a MI6 agent? Why not be gay and open? I suspect because some are still very much leading secret lives.

There has to be sympathy with Imaan nevertheless. One the one hand they don't want negative, patronising portrayals. On the other they know most Muslims don't want to acknowledge them. Choose between a rock and a hard place.

There is less sympathy for Sir Iqbal Sacranie, no doubt relieved yesterday when he found the police could not do anything about his previous comments on homosexuals.

It could turn out that Sacranie has become a big believer in the ideals and laws on freedom of speech, which saved his bacon, but let's not get hasty.

"All Britons, whether they are in favour of homosexuality or not, should be allowed to freely express their views in an atmosphere free of intimidation or bullying. We cannot claim to be a truly free and open society while we are trying to silence dissenting views."

When this was written in support of Iqbal Sacranie, you could just taste the irony. Isn't this the same Muslim Council of Britain that wants to restrict people's dissenting views with a religious hatred law?

Or the same one that cries Islamophobia every time someone points out their dodgy links to organisations in Pakistan? Afraid so.

There is similar hypocrisy with our friend from Desi Xpress, Adam Yosef, too. Let me jog your memory on his recent column comparing gay campaigner Peter Tatchell with Nick Griffin and Sheikh Omar Bakri.

Yosef states that Tatchell hates "Religious folk, 'fundamentalist' Muslims" and anyone who disagrees with him. You can understand why Tatchell hates the former two. Religious folk, like Iqbal Sacranie, are always slating homosexuals, while "fundamentalist" Muslims, assuming he means the likes of the Taliban, were happily executing them or issuing fatwas against gays. Big surprise there.

Yosef ain't too happy that Tatchell has it in for the Respect Party, campaigner Salma Yaqoob or Dr Naseem of Birmingham Mosque. Now it might have helped that our friend declared his interests at this stage as a good journalist.

Adam Yosef used to be press officer for Yaqoob and Dr Naseem, and all three are members of the Respect party. The good doctor, also Respect's single largest donor of funds, has been a supporter of a policy of executing homosexuals.

What co-incidence!? Respect has nothing against dodgy donors so you can see why Tatchell might be a bit peeved with them. But the funniest is yet to come. Under the charmingly titled "What sh*t does he rant?", Yosef rants about what Tatchell has said.

"'Gay venues could be bombed by Islamic terrorists. All gay bars and clubs should introduce bag and body searches. Muslim fundamentalists have a violent hatred of lesbians and gay men. They believe we should be killed.' Also waffles on about Muslims being given more political voting cred than gays and upset the black community by claiming Malcolm X was gay."

Ignoring the waffling bit, the first part seems perfectly legitimate. Islamic terrorists blow up innocent people for a lot less than being gay. Considering that "mainstream" Muslims have an aversion to homosexuality, you can expect terrorists to have a violent hatred of lesbians and gay men. Maybe Yosef could enlighten us on what the Iranian government does to homosexuals or what it says in the Qu'ran?

Anyway, I digress. This nitpicking with Muslims attacking gays and vice versa is a bit like two skinny dogs fighting for scraps. There are bigger issues to deal with and nothing really will come of this all except more bad blood.

As they say, people in glass houses should not throw stones.


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