A Time For Intolerance


Posted on : 2/11/2010 09:58:00 PM | By : Dann | In : , , ,

My 2.11....and [sigh] declining....readers might not have heard of the recent kerfuffle at Vanderbilt University.  It seems that Vanderbilt Adjunct Professor of Islam at the Divinity School and Muslim chaplain for Vanderbilt, Awadh Binhazim, recently gave his views regarding homosexuality and Islam.

What does the good professor have to say??
Question: Under Islamic law, if a homosexual person began to engage in homosexual relations on an ongoing and permanent way, with no intention of quitting, then the punishment under Islamic law would be death... unless, you know, he agreed to quit. As a practicing Muslim do you accept or reject this teaching of Islam?

Answer: ...I don't have a choice as a Muslim to accept or reject a teaching. I go with what Islam teaches.

...this is captured in other religions as well... so, the punishment is Islam is certain rules... probably a lot of time to explain it... you cannot prosecute someone just because you think they are homosexual. There has to be clear proof...

Question: Under Islamic law, is it punishable by death if you are a homosexual?

Answer: Yes.
You will note a fair number of ellipses in the above.  The reason is that the good professor attempts to weasel his way out of admitting his position that homosexuals can be appropriately punished by being put to death.

He tries to use the "but they do it too" defense by correctly pointing out that Jewish and Christian religious texts also condemn homosexuals to death.  He failed to note that the vast majority of Christians have either learned not to impose their faith on others, or how to ignore the literal translation of some portions of the Bible.

He tries to wriggle out of a tight spot by declaring that no country in the world is ruled exclusively by Islamic laws.  Apparently countries like Saudi Arabia and Iran [scroll down to see how Mahmoud Ahmadinejad ensures that his country remains  where the vast majority of their laws are derived from Islam don't qualify under the good professor's very narrow interpretation as being nations ruled by Islamic law.

This [picture and story from the Washington Post] is how Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad ensures that his country remains 100% free from homosexuality.

 Out of 93 countries where homosexuality is a punishable offense, 7 punish homosexuals by putting them to death.  In each of those 7 countries, Islam is the dominant religion.

To be fair, one Christian dominated nation is currently considering putting HIV infected homosexuals to death; Uganda.

Why are Professor Binhazim's comments a concern?  Perhaps because they demonstrate a lack of tolerance for homosexuals.  Perhaps because they demonstrate his acceptance of religion being imposed on those that do not share his faith.

Perhaps because had he been some flavor of Christian, he would have been dismissed from the University, his comments publicly disavowed by students, faculty, alumni, and administration alike.  Tar and feathers would have been discussed.

Intolerance towards such savagery ought not to be considered a vice.  It is a timely virtue.

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