banner photo:

"Each individual should allow reason to guide his conduct, or like an animal, he will need to be led by a leash."
Diogenes of Sinope


Banner photo
Thousand Flowers tapestry (15th Century) - Beaune, France (detail)

Monday, September 24, 2007

"No homosexuals in Iran" - Ahmadinejad

During Iranian President Ahmadinejad's controversial address at Columbia University today, he was asked about Iran's persecution of homosexuals:

When asked about the death penalty Iran imposed on homosexuals, Ahmadinejad discussed the death sentence for drug smugglers. When pushed by moderator and acting dean of the School of International and Public Affairs John Coatsworth, the Iranian president said: "In Iran, we don't have homosexuals like in your country. In Iran, we do not have this phenomenon. I don't know who has told you we have that."

Well, I'm sure that position is Iran's best-case scenario, since it has a long history of harassing and even executing homosexuals (including teenagers). Soon the President of Iran will be able to certify his country homosexual-free once a few more "degenerates" are strung up in Tehran.

So, what was the reaction to this outrage today at Columbia? Are gay Columbia students storming the Iranian consulates and taking hostages? Well, here's a sample:


"Despite differences in the use of certain Western terms and potential errors in translation, he clearly knew what was being asked and what was going on," said Crystal Gonzalez, 20, an economics major and spokeswoman for the Columbia Queer Alliance.
"At first I wasn't sure about what I thought about him coming, but I think it was a good thing that he did and could spark a debate. … He is clearly a master of avoiding questions," she said, adding, "we disapprove and condemn much of what he said."
Whoa - strong words there, Crystal. That's telling him. How about this:


"There is no doubt that the current government is disrespectful of human rights, but war is not an answer," said David Trilling, 29, speaking on behalf of the Iranian students at the School for International and Public Affairs, which hosted the event. "Nearly all of us," he said, "do not accept the comments of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad."

Give 'em hell, David! Then there's this:


Other students saved criticism for [Columbia President] Bollinger, who condemned many of the Iranian leader's earlier comments in his opening statement. "Yes, he skirted some of the issues," said senior statistics and political science major Max Bulinski of the Iranian leader, "but I believe he believed much of what he said."
"I think it was a mistake for Bollinger to attack him before he was given a chance to speak. Ahmadinejad was right to say he should have been given the chance to let people form their own opinions."
That's it, Max - go for the jugular.
I respect free speech, and I agree with Columbia's decision to invite Ahmadinejad to speak where he could be held accountable for his outrages in a forum which would not be permitted in his own country. I was impressed with President Bollinger's verbal attack on Ahmadinejad. What bothers me is the inability of the left to stand up and be counted on issues that leftists traditionally support: women's equality and gay rights. Why is this? Because that would put them on the same side as the United States and President Bush:


The Iranian president's presence invited comparisons to President Bush by a number of activist organizations, which used the opportunity not to protest against Ahmadinejad's human rights record but against the war in Iraq. "Ahmadinejad's speech comes at a time the U.S. is proposing war in Iran," said Sunsara Taylor of Revolution Newspaper before a large crowd of reporters. "Bush is using Ahmadinejad's record and the crimes of his regime as an excuse. Bush has propped up plenty of Islamic terror regimes -- look at the Taliban and Saudi Arabia."
Sickening. If the West collapses, it will be because of the rot within, not attacks from outside.
UPDATE: from GayPatriot:
Any gay or lesbian American that still denies Islamists are targeting gays, and instead thinks President Bush is the enemy, demonstrates the true definition of a "self-loathing homosexual."

UPDATE: Well, thanks for clearing this up: statement from Columbia's Queer Studies Department (via Classical Values)

....we would like to strongly caution media and campus organizations against the use of such words as "gay", "lesbian", or "homosexual" to describe people in Iran who engage in same-sex practices and feel same-sex desire. The construction of sexual orientation as a social and political identity and all of the vocabulary therein is a Western cultural idiom. As such, scholars of sexuality in the Middle East generally use the terms "same-sex practices" and "same-sex desire" in recognition of the inadequacy of Western terminology. President Ahmadinejad's presence on campus has provided an impetus for us all to examine a number of issues, but most relevant to our concerns are the complexities of how sexual identity is constructed and understood in different parts of the world.

2 comments:

Raphael Alexander said...

I believe a similar question was asked to Adolf in 1941: "Jews? We don't Jews in Germany, we don't have this "phenomenom" of Jews in our country"

...

What a maroon.

Anonymous said...

Incredible, unbelievable garbage from the 'Queer studies' department.

Would they care to explain their idiotic gibberish to the 'same-sex-practising' teenage boys facing execution in Iran?