Around 200 people arrested for throwing a party in Bahrain!
The Association of British Muslims finds it odd and indeed despicable, that in today’s world, with all it’s troubles, some would choose to persecute the sexuality of those they perceive as “different”, scapegoating minorities instead of focussing on real issues. Today, many predominantly Muslim countries face a number of challenges, with extensive unemployment, huge gulf between the rich and the poor, a noticeable lack of distinguished higher education establishments and power mostly invested in the hands of small elites. Hence, the current unrest in Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen and other states in the region, fuelled by the frustrations of peoples who’ve had to face these challenges throughout their lives.
The Holy Qur’an doesn’t actually mention much at all regarding people’s sexuality. The only verses which are interpreted by some in reference to homosexuality, are those referring to Prophet Lut (Lot). Yet, if one reads carefully, these verses are really condemning rape rather than sexuality. Hence, “When Our messengers came to Lut, he was grieved on their account and felt himself powerless (to protect) them. He said: ‘This is a distressful day.’” (Holy Qur’an 11:77) People need to be protected from rape, not consensual acts… The main point made by the Holy Qur’an is about consent. Taking away people’s consent is to deny them of their inherent human rights.
As Muslims, we need to refocus on defending everyone’s human rights, as highlighted by the Holy Qur’an and Allah’s messengers. We cannot only defend some people’s human rights while denying the same to others, as that surely smacks of hypocrisy, which was outrightly condemned by Allah’s messenger and in the Holy Qur’an. But we must defend all people’s human and civil rights, regardless of such distinguishing factors as race, gender, wealth, sexuality etc. Allah has honoured every son/daughter of Adam, so who are we to dishonour them?
The crackdown in Bahrain, is typical of how Allah’s message to humanity has been completely misunderstood and warped, yet people still do such things in the name of Allah, Islam, or Islamic morality. When in reality, all they are doing is acting upon their own prejudices.
Paul Salahuddin Armstrong, Co-Director of the Association of British Muslims
Mohammed Abbasi, Co-Director of the Association of British Muslims
Dan Littauer, Human Rights and Press Director of the Association of British Muslims