Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Interreligious monologue

More doom and gloom on the gays and religion front: The head of the Muslim Council of Britain, Sir Iqbal Sacranie, has condemned homosexuality as unhealthy and a threat to society, according to the Times of London. His comments came in response the legalization of same-sex "civil partnerships," the first of which was celebrated last month.

According to Iqbal, "[Homosexuality] does not augur well in building the very foundations of society: stability, family relationships. And it is something we would certainly not in any form encourage the community to be involved in.”

Asked on the BBC Radio 4 PM programme if homosexuality was harmful to society, he replied: “Certainly it is a practice that in terms of health, in terms of the moral issues that comes along in a society, it is. It is not acceptable.

“Each of our faiths tells us that it is harmful and, I think, if you look into the scientific evidence that has been available in terms of the forms of various illnesses and diseases that are there, surely it points out that where homosexuality is practised there is a greater concern in that area.” Well, your faith may tell you that--or perhaps your personal interpretation of it.

Nice to see that the gays-spread-disease calumny is alive and well. Of course, we would all be rightly condemned if we said Islam was a threat to Western society because of its association with extremist politics and terrorism. Unfortunately, Iqbal evidently doesn't see the connection between his blanket condemnation of gays and lesbians and the illogical and prejudicial anti-Islamic rhetoric plaguing both European and American politics and media.

Not to be outdone, Cardinal Keith O’Brien, Roman Catholic archbishop of Saint Andrews and Edinburgh, used his New Year’s Day sermon to say that the introduction of civil partnerships was partly responsible for Britains living “at a time when the truth of marriage and family is obscured and distorted."

I still wonder what religious leaders across the spectrum are going to do when society doesn't collapse under the burden of legally-recognized same-sex relationships. Who will they blame then for sky-high divorce rates, unsupported and abused children, and the other problems that plague modern families? Will they finally acknowledge that the greatest threat to human families is an economy that values only the production of wealth at the cost of true human development and the destruction of the environment? Will they join their voices to oppose the resource-driven conflicts that turn children into soldiers, that separate families, and expose women and their children to exploitation?

I hate to be shrill, but I hardly think that the vast majority of the world's families give a damn about same-sex marriage. They're too busy trying not to freeze to death in earthquake shattered sections of Pakistan, trying to survive the aftermath of a tsunami in Southeast Asia, mourning children lost to AIDS and war in Africa, looking for medical care in the U.S., and trying to scrape by on a dollar a day in Central and South America.


At 11:39 AM, Anonymous emjay said...

Will they finally acknowledge that the greatest threat to human families is an economy that values only the production of wealth at the cost of true human development and the destruction of the environment?

This is the genius of the Republican party, convincing Americans that gay marriage is the biggest problem society faces, not the destructive greed of too many of the already-rich politicians, lobbyists, and heads of corporations.

As far as the gays-spread-disease argument, does that mean lesbianism is the moral orientation for women? After all, heterosexual sex is much more likely to expose a woman to HIV and other STDs.

At 3:17 PM, Blogger boinky said...

promiscuity spread HIV...anal sex spreads with women who are circumcized (in Africa) causes HIV to spread...dirty needles cause HIV to spread...
If gay marriage meant that gays would stop hitting bath houses and stay faithful and eschew anal sex, then fine...let's let lesbians marry...but marriage is already on it's last legs due to the sexual revolution of the sixties and easy divorce.
Our social umbrella allows sexual choice to reign, but in the third world, the umbrella is based on our animal side, and various forms of the family are reinforced by our genetic impulses toward pair bonding and reinforced by social pressures to limit promiscuity...these ideas were destroyed by the sexual revolution...
Read Humana Vitae...

At 4:02 PM, Anonymous fluffycat said...

Unfortunately true that what happens in someone's bedroom is more important than what is happening around the world. To focus on someone's sexual expression and desire for intimate relationship and to forget about the needs of so many people living in horrific situations is an abomination and goes against any Christian/Scriptural belief that I have.
Also, those who are against same sex unions want to preserve marriage, then let them look at marriages that alread exist and ask why nearly 60% of them break up.


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