Monday, May 08, 2006

Life and Death

O what a glorious day! O what a wonderous day! Why? Well, because it's my birthday. Another year in the technicolour, cavalcade of fun and frolics has passed and I am still alive...

...which is more than can be said for 14 year-old Ahmed Khalil who was shot in Iraq at point-blank range by men in police uniforms for the crime of being a homosexual. According to the Independent today, it would seem that young Ahmed may have slept with men for money to support his poverty-stricken family, who have now fled the area fearing further reprisals. The country has seen a spurt of homophobic murders since Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani issued a 'fatwa' against homosexuals calling for them to be killed in the worst possible way. The good Ayatollah has been held up in the past as the saviour of a post-war, democratised Iraq by many western sources, including over-inflated, homo journalist Johann Hari (who, coincidentally, writes for the Independent). I wonder whether this will be enough to change their minds? Certainly there has been no condamnation forthcoming from the US or UK administrations - they need al-Sistani too much for that.

I have written about al-Sistani and his fatwa in a previous post. Nobody commented. Perhaps nobody cares? After all, what's a few dead gays between friends?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hari is constantly condemning the "murderous homophobia" of Islamic fundamentalists. Your point is totally bogus.

6:56 pm  
Blogger The Venial Sinner said...

Johann Hari is not my point. I just find him a bit annoying so I thought I'd crowbar him in there for his error of advocacy.

7:04 pm  
Blogger Kate said...

I think maybe people don't respond to these sorts of posts because we have no idea where to begin. I sure as hell don't. It's such a fundamental conflict - where does religious freedom/orthodoxy/belief have to end? These people have such a different mindset about homosexuality - rather like they'd take the video in your previous post quite seriously. (And before anyone says anything I'm QUITE aware that not all muslims are like that - I've known some to be the loveliest people I've ever met).

And on that happy, joyous note, HAPPY BIRTHDAY. Taurus is a good way to be. =)

8:31 pm  
Blogger The Venial Sinner said...

But whatever do you mean, Kate? The video on my last post WAS serious.


8:39 pm  
Blogger Katy Newton said...

Unfortunately homophobia crosses all races, all colours, all religions, all classes and all levels of education. I'm with Kate - where to start? The fatwa is a terrible thing.

11:08 pm  
Blogger Potentilla said...

Well, anyway, happy birthday, golden boy, and many many years of continuing rosebuds to you.

10:26 am  
Blogger Shiny Happy Person said...

I'm with Kate. I think I've mentioned it on one of your "Phelps is a cunt" posts in the past - that I know I SHOULD, as a committed homosexualist, get very upset and ranty about these things, but I don't. It's dreadfully apathetic, I suppose. I DON'T know where to begin. It's too much. Easier to concentrate on smaller, easy-to-manage issues that are closer to home and the solving of which seems more feasible. It's not that I don't care, of course.


1:55 pm  
Blogger Shiny Happy Person said...

Oh, yeah, and happy birthday. I'm sure you will be making it a very sedate one.

1:56 pm  
Blogger Dazed & Confused said...

johann hari is an idiot. did you read his leader in the independent today? in precis form:

"oh my god. the stuff happening in darfur is like so awful. like no one is doing anything about it."

try two years too late. "a militia called the janjaweed" he educated as if independent readers aren't fully aware of what's been going on.

read more like "look at all the places i went on my holidays."

to copy everyone else, i'm with kate.

happy birthday mate. beers next week? oh no i'm on nights. grrr.

6:59 pm  
Blogger The Venial Sinner said...

Not only is he an idiot, but he's also absolutely disgusting.

I suppose I best agree with Kate as well then...

9:11 pm  
Blogger Kate said...

Aren't I popular?

Glad to know the £8000 in tuition I'm spending on this year of education is actually serving me somehow, even if it is only in blog commenting.

11:13 pm  
Blogger Note said...

Let's see.

My enervated dismay over the compounded woes of the Middle East doesn't make me much loquacious, violent fatwas of any shape or colour notwithstanding, but here goes.

Cultural relativism really only stands up for so long. Oppression, mutilation and murder are all thoroughly recognisable as unconscionable, cross-culturally; it is their exception that is specific to a society. Localized justifications are required to explain what can generally be interpreted as barbarity by an outsider. This suggests to me that we are, at the very least, justified in our own outrage when faced with the inequities of a foreign culture, especially when their root can be so easily questioned.

It really burns my bacon when the proponents of a supposedly "moral" war (never mind the reality) can so easily pick and choose the details of their own reasonings and defences. Oh, we can't judge -- fuck that! You just did, tearing down the essential building blocks of a civilization and retooling it under the banner of freedom. I mean, what about the --

Hey, look! Kelly Clarkson has a diamond pin in her belly button!

I'm sorry. I forgot what I was saying. I think it went something like this: I'm angry. Stupid Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Husaini Sistani. Stupid fatwa. Whatever happened to all that love and angels stuff that's so core to Islam, Judaism and Christianity?

Whatever happened to that?

Oh! And happy Birthday. Belated.

4:01 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You say ""oh my god. the stuff happening in darfur is like so awful. like no one is doing anything about it."

try two years too late."

Er, hari has been writing about this for two years. He was one of the first journalists in britain to write about Darfur, actually. Look at his website

3:07 pm  
Blogger The Venial Sinner said...

Like, who are you, his greatest fan or something. Now you know the court said you're not to go within 50 foot of him again or it's jail for you...

3:18 pm  
Blogger The Venial Sinner said...

Hello, Note. Thanks for the happy birthday.

I agree with your final sentiment. I get a bit frustrated with religion at times because its supposed core teachings of love and tolerance are so often shelved by its adherents in favour of a form of rabid exclusionism of the convert-or-die type.

I echo you in asking where are these supposed angels? When I look to religion I see only a poisonous nest of vipers waiting to pollute people's minds with hateful concepts such as 'sin', 'evil' and 'immorality'. And, as for the Pope, don't even get me started on that old cunt!

4:35 pm  
Blogger Dazed & Confused said...

"Er, hari has been writing about this for two years. He was one of the first journalists in britain to write about Darfur, actually. Look at his website"

er no. check the BBC news around 2 months before your lover wrote anything. even the progressive and liberal CNN and FoxNews had stuff before he did.

so yes, back to your shrine.

10:55 am  

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