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The Tyranny of the LGBT Community

The Tyranny of the LGBT Community

Asharq Al-Awsat, London, November 26

An alarming debate is taking place in Australia these days about the right of those who reject homosexuality to express their opinion in public. Imagine how time has run its course. After the gay or  LGBT community, as it has come to be called, was oppressed, rejected, and vulnerable, today it has become the group most capable of determining which opinions are and aren’t allowed to be shared in public. A bill put forward by the Australian government, led by Prime Minister Scott Morrison, aims at protecting religious people from “cancel culture.” Among other things, the bill would allow Catholic schools the right to fire teachers or expel gay students in the name of religious values. “Many people of all faiths and traditions are concerned about the loss of religious protection in the face of the pervasive cancel culture in Australian life,” Morrison said while introducing the bill to parliament. Then he added this revealing phrase when he said: “People should not be eliminated, oppressed, or vilified because their beliefs are different from the beliefs of others.” The prime minister and his bill were met with an expected attack from LGBT supporters. The Australian Law Center for Human Rights said that the bill did not achieve “a fair balance between the right to equality and freedom of worship.” Human rights groups and gay activists have warned that the law gives license to people to express their bigoted opinions and circulate degrading or harmful comments in workplaces, schools, and health facilities. Note that the legalization of same-sex marriage in Australia already took place in 2017. However, many LGBT supporters aren’t satisfied with it and also aspire to silence anyone who opposes the normalization of homosexuality. This caused religious groups to feel that their right to expression had been curtailed. The Australian government was even attacked earlier this year for awarding the Medal of Australia in honor of tennis player Margaret Court, who publicly expressed her anti-gay views. What is happening in Australia these days doesn’t merely concern Australia but the entire world. We all remember how everyone attacked the national team of Hungary in the recent European Football Championship due to anti-homosexual legislation in the Hungarian Parliament, and because of its fans’ chants in support of such legislation. Someone might say, “What do we, Arabs or Muslims, have to do with these issues?” Whether we agree with these bills or not, the fact that they are becoming increasingly predominant in the Western world suggests that the day isn’t far when international agreements will oblige their signatories to accept and normalize the LGBT community. This will affect us in the Arab world and we will have to accept these rules or live with the consequences. –Meshary Al Dhaidy (translated by Asaf Zilberfarb)

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