Human Rights,  Islamism

Gambian issue flushes out Brotherhood view of gays

Well, to twin with my last post on the Muslim Brotherhood, there’s some good news and bad news for lesbian and gay people over at IslamOnline, the website that publishes scholarly fatwas overseen by chief Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the reactionary bigot championed as a “moderate” by a former London mayor.

You may recall news I wrote about recentlyabout the intentions of the Gambian president, Yahya Jammeh  who said he would “cut off the head” of any homosexual caught in his country.

Well, following queries on the the correct Sharia position on the president’s threats, an IslamOnline scholar expanded on Qaradawi’s earlier pronouncements (based on his book The Lawful and Prohibited in Islam)which – to refresh your memory – read:

The spread of this depraved practice in a society disrupts its natural life pattern and makes those who practice it slaves to their lusts, depriving them of decent taste, decent morals, and a decent manner of living. The story of the people of Prophet Lut as narrated in the Qur’an should be sufficient for us. Lut’s people were addicted to this shameless depravity, abandoning natural, pure, lawful relations with women in the pursuit of this unnatural, foul and illicit practice… Muslim jurists hold different opinions concerning the punishment for this abominable practice. Should it be the same as the punishment for fornication, or should both the active and passive participants be put to death? While such punishments may seem cruel, they have been suggested to maintain the purity of the Islamic society and to keep it clean of perverted elements.”

Now Qaradawi’s colleague, Mohamed El-Moctar El-Shinqiti, has expanded on this basic theme in this new fatwa. As promised, there is good news and bad news:

GOOD NEWS:The hadiths calling for the stoning to death of homosexuals are “weak” and thus the subject of legitimate debate. Thus those facing the death penalty for homosexuality in the seven Muslim countries that still prescribe it can now – with scholarly confidence – say to their executioners “hey, let’s talk about this first”.

BAD NEWS:Homosexuality remains “heinous crimes against humanity that deserve a deterrent punishment”. It is moreover, “an abhorrent crime… a wicked and grievous sin… a hideous sin… an abomination… a crime against society” and “a wicked, immoral practice”. But, the punishment need not, as we have noted, involve death. It can instead be “the lashing of the perpetrator one hundred times in a public place as stated in Surat An-Nur, or imprisoning and punishing him as stated in Surat of An-Nisa’.”

Lashing is a similar punishment to the ‘crime’ of adultery, the ‘crime’ of adultery, the crime of adultery

He then concluded with a harsh repudiation of Gambian president Yahya Jammeh:

Gambian president Jammeh deserves respect for his enthusiasm for Islam and virtue in his society. However, before iterating his threats, he needs to wait and make sure of the legal foundation of them…

You tell him, Mohamed!