You Weren’t Born With That Cloth

Since coming out as a gay man and ex-Muslim I have been consistently afraid, frustrated and disappointed at the lack of support and attention I receive from the general left wing, here in Melbourne my hometown and internationally, due to having left Islam. A religion which holds homophobic, misogynistic, dogmatic creeds, the Muslim faith is one of conquest, one of the sword — and I am not speaking from a place of bigotry; I was a Muslim, so how could I? I’m speaking from having spent years initially as a believer and later as a skeptic studying the Quran, hadiths and other associated Islamic texts.

And when the sacred months have passed, then kill the polytheists wherever you find them and capture them and besiege them and sit in wait for them at every place of ambush. But if they should repent, establish prayer, and give zakah, let them [go] on their way. -Sahih International

My father was a British man who grew up in Australia; he traveled to Indonesia for work which became an extended stay, and this was where he encountered my mother and they had me. It was a divorce that had to happen; my father’s secularist values inherently clashed, I feel, with my mother’s growing religiosity. I was an incredibly devout Muslim up until the ages of 15 or so. This was an incredibly extended, significant period of time – almost all my childhood and the entirety of my adolescence was spent poring over religious texts at the insistence of my mother.

screen-shot-2016-09-27-at-2-47-36-amI distinctly remembers the tenseness and fear on my partners’ face when news regarding Orlando, or the Nice attacks, or the numerous other Islamic terrorism related incidents had sprung; there were nights when we were frozen in bed out of fear that my family would hire a hit man to behead me – the punishments to ex-Muslims are intolerably harsh and Islamic law promotes Sharia over the law of the nation one resides in. Think of the Fatwas issued to outspoken ex-Muslim such as Ayaan Hirsi Ali or others critical of Islam such as Salman Rushdie receive on a daily basis; you make your own mind up regarding where this is going.

As opposed to older progressive types such as Bill Maher, who still retain a degree of criticism surrounding Islam, there is a common trait amongst individuals of the more regressive portion of the left, and that’s the tendency to associate the Islamic faith or religion – which by its’ very nature accepts all backgrounds — with ‘brown Arab people’; in the word’s of The Spectators’ Ed West, coming to terms with the bigotry of Islam for the left wing means destroying the left’s addiction to being ‘excited’ protecting ‘vulnerable’ minorities . Not only is this horribly factually inaccurate – taking into consideration that the majority of Muslims reside in Asia, for example , some of them who can be quite light skinned such as my mother – it also silences any opposition which would stifle discussion on the topic of improving women’s and LGBT rights in Islamic countries. Omar Mateen’s violence, whilst it could have been born of an internalized homophobia – that internalized homophobia comes from a place, and this place is, more often than not, the intolerance bred by Islamic scripture. Because after all, according to the Hadith scriptures, “When a man mounts another man, the throne of God shakes.”

In Australia, where I’m based, the term “Islamophobia” has gained ridiculous popularity. To say it doesn’t exist shakes the left wing’s throne of idiocy equally as much as it pisses off the worst Imams. I have never been more confused by a trend; the crazy amount of inner city white adolescent ‘socialists’ who lack any foundational understanding of Islam completely does my head in. I can distinctly remember coming into an argument with a member of such a group, only to be told it wasn’t my mother who’d kicked me out of home – it was ‘capitalism’. I’m incredibly young and have had a very hard time finding sustainable employment, and I’m willing to acknowledge that capitalism possesses deep imperfections. Islam possesses more.

The Hadith are collections of sayings attributed to Muhammad. Many Hadiths (ahadith) discuss liwat (sexual intercourse between males). (one of the) two examples are: “When a man mounts another man, the throne of God shakes. – The Qur’an

At least, under capitalism, gays such as Peter Thiel can run successful companies and throw parties, while under Islam more often than not, they’re thrown off buildings.

The most ironic thing is how, to me, many if not most of these youths who shout “Islamophobia” at any given circumstance usually do not know a single Muslim person, let alone have ventured into communities like my family where Muslims are the majority. Whilst the country I was born, Indonesia has a ‘secular’ constitution, Islam takes precedence simply due to the number of Muslims, and the nation is growing more and more conservative and anti-LGBT day by day. I hesitate to understand how any of these teal-haired, septum-pierced youths could spend a single moment breathing in Jakarta’s air – let alone find the goddamn city on a map.

I’m very fed up with the lack of discussion regarding the rights of minority people within Islamic countries as whether these ‘socialists’ (who are, let’s face it, living off inheritance money or trust funds) like it or not, how Muslims treat minority groups in these regions affects how they are treated in countries where Muslims migrate. Simply observe Europe for numerous case studies of this, whether it be France’s housing commissions, Germany’s problems assimilating migrant Turks, or the United Kingdom’s soaring Muslim population. I fully understand that if Muslim immigration were halted in the past, for example, I would never have been able to rent the apartment I write this article in because I wouldn’t be in this country at all. But what’s worse is being promised that, if you were brave enough, the LGBT ‘community’ would embrace you with open arms after exiting immensely stressful circumstances – only to be told your oppressors were, in the eyes of the regressive left, the ones being oppressed.

I find that very hard to take, when even the president of the Islamic Society of North America, Muzzamil Siddiqi, compares homosexuality to a ‘moral disorder’—equivalent to being a ‘thief, liar or murderer’.

Religion is a choice. Being born LGBT is not.

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  • I am A catholic and gay. As far as i am concerned, religion is not a choice. I was baptised in the roman catholic church as a child and had faith until the age of 6, when i took the active decision to distance myself from the church and its catechism. However, god was always in the shadows and has been ever since. catholicism cannot be escaped once it has been cast upon someone. There will always be the “unseen hook and an invisible line which is long enough to let [one] wander to the ends of the world and still to bring [one] back with a twitch upon the thread.”

    • That was definitely incredibly poetic, Matthis! I’m not sure if I understood all of it haha. But regardless, this is pretty much just how I see religion – there’s many tenets and accessories of islam i find difficult to remove, but it doesn’t make me a “MUSLIM” per se.