Gay Relationships In Luxor

Discuss the problems that can occur in relationships with differing cultures and help overcome any barriers that exist.

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Post by Glyphdoctor »

Arthur wrote: Can you finally answer my question as to what a god-fearing gay ( or lesbian) Egyptian is to do to be true to themselves, their nature, their family and their faith. You don't advocate lifelong celibacy, you don't advocate them trying to change a culture. You appear to want them to live a lie, leave the country, or, in your vision of islam, go to hell.
A God-fearing person has only to be true to God and by doing so he will be true to everyone else. It's not my job to tell him what to do. But I can assure you I would never tell them to live a lie, leave the country, or go to hell. No Muslim would ask another Muslim to do these things and you know that very well.


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Post by Glyphdoctor »

Arthur wrote:
"Privacy recognizes that we all have a right to a sphere of private intimacy and autonomy which allows us to establish and nurture human relationships without interference from the outside community. The way in which we give expression to our sexuality is at the core of this area of private intimacy. If, in expressing our sexuality, we act consensually and without harming one another, invasion of that precinct will be a breach of our privacy...


Yet, when I pointed out to you that two Egyptian men are free to do what they want PRIVATELY, you suggested that was not the case. Now, some men may lack a private space, but that does not mean that if a private space exists, they are not free to do what they want in it. Society may not approve of it in theory, but if it is done privately, then society has nothing it can say.
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Post by Glyphdoctor »

With regards to the article posted above, I thought this was a good response which lays out what the original author (and Arthur) seem to want to ignore for a balanced discussion to take place:
http://www.getreligion.org/2011/08/will ... tian-gays/

It is also interesting to note that if the people described in the original article were straight, they would meet with as much opposition from general Egyptian society as they would being gay. Drunkeness, public displays of affection between unmarried individuals, these are not accepted regardless of sexual orientation. So why isn't someone like Arthur concerned about straight people in Egypt?

Oh yeah, and I should point out the molotov cocktails alongside the MB had to be during the battle of the camel. The people involved in that on both sides behaved like thugs and put the Egyptian Museum at risk. This oh-so-poor lesbian could have burned the museum down. Or do you think she has a God-given right to throw molotov cocktails?
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Post by Arthur »

Glyphdoctor wrote:Yet, when I pointed out to you that two Egyptian men are free to do what they want PRIVATELY, you suggested that was not the case. Now, some men may lack a private space, but that does not mean that if a private space exists, they are not free to do what they want in it. Society may not approve of it in theory, but if it is done privately, then society has nothing it can say.
In its review of Egypt in 2002, the UN Human Rights Committee urged Egypt to “refrain from penalizing private sexual relations between consenting adults” (U.N. Doc., CCPR/CO/76/EGY, November 28, 2002) and criticized the “criminalization of some behaviors such as those characterized as 'debauchery' (articles 17 and 26 of the Covenant)”. And in 2002, the U.N. Committee Against Torture voiced concern at “the reports received concerning ill-treatment inflicted on men because of their real or alleged homosexual inclinations, apparently encouraged by the lack of adequate clarity in penal legislation.” It called on Egypt to “remove all ambiguity in legislation which might underpin the persecution of individuals because of their sexual orientation” (U.N. Doc. CAT/C/XXIX/Misc.4, November 20, 2002).

The U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention held in regard to the Queen Boat arrests in Egypt that: "their detention was arbitrary because it violated articles 2, paragraph 1, and 26 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which guarantee equality before the law and the right to equal legal protection against all forms of discrimination, including “sex”" (“Opinion no. 7/2002 (Egypt)”).

"There were hundreds of us, 300 or more. I saw unbelievable methods of torture. They brought in this person Shadi. You could hardly tell his features, his eyes were swollen and his face had swelled up like a football from the beatings… We saw another gay man -- they brought him in, they had dislocated his shoulder. They had tied his hands behind him and picked him up by them and hung him from the doorframe. Then they tied a butane gas container to his legs to stretch them. And [when they returned him to the cell], you can't imagine, they handcuffed him to a ring in the floor. And they did not allow him to go to the bathroom at all... They left him that way for four days."

Human Rights Watch interview with Walid (not his real name), Cairo, April 24, 2003. http://www.merip.org/mer/mer230/trials-culture

“They punished me only because of my sexual orientation and they condemned me as a criminal for my entire life. … In brief, they killed every beautiful hope and future I ever had. I don’t understand why they do these things to men who hurt no one. I don’t understand why they must hunt us down. …I am a human being. Aren’t I? Tell me that I am. No, I know I am. I just can’t believe this happened to me.”

"Police routinely torture men suspected of homosexual conduct, sometimes to extract confessions and sometimes simply as a sadistic reminder of the burden of shame their alleged behavior incurs. Men have told Human Rights Watch how they were whipped, beaten, bound and suspended in painful positions, splashed with ice-cold water, and burned with lit cigarettes. Men taken during mass roundups may be tortured with electroshock on the limbs, genitals, or tongue. Guards encourage other prisoners to rape suspected homosexuals." http://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/ ... 0304_0.pdf

Free to do what they want in private...? Society has nothing to say...?
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Post by Arthur »

Glyphdoctor wrote:if the people described in the original article were straight, they would meet with as much opposition from general Egyptian society as they would being gay. Drunkeness, public displays of affection between unmarried individuals, these are not accepted regardless of sexual orientation. So why isn't someone like Arthur concerned about straight people in Egypt?

...do you think she has a God-given right to throw molotov cocktails?
Oh dear, more smears and false accusations...

Smear 1. Where have I endorsed drunkeness? I am teetotal.

Smear 2. I haven't mentioned public displays of affection, you did:
Glyphdoctor wrote:No one thinks anything of them walking down the street hand in hand, they can go wherever they want anytime of the day or night and no one will question their being out and about...
Smear 3. Where have I showed any animosity for straight people? I am sole carer, 24 hours a day for a straight person.

Smear 4. Now apparently, as a pacifist, I endorse the use of violence.

Previous smear: You accused me of making "denigrating and dismissive remarks" about heterosexual marriage. I asked you to reference them. You haven't.

Hmm! What do the Hadith say about those making false accusations?


You may believe that love between men and between women is intrinsically sinful because you believe that the Qur'an says so. Sex with slaves and minors is allowed in the Qur'an, but on these issues, mercifully, immutability has been quietly forgotten in favour of human dignity and decency.

I would distinguish, as the laws of most countries would, between sin and harm. One of the key problems of sin written into the law in Egypt iin this regard is that it does not differentiate between love and rape, union and violation. It simply does not recognise "consent".

"Sexual orientation is... integrally linked to the close bonds that human beings form with others to meet their personal needs for love, attachment, and intimacy.

These bonds also encompass nonsexual physical affection between partners, shared goals and values, mutual support, and ongoing commitment. Because of the fundamental and identity-defining character of these bonds, sexual orientation is closely related to important personal identities, social roles, and community memberships. Just as with heterosexuals, many homosexual persons define themselves in terms of their roles as partners in committed relationships and, in fact, as parents. More broadly, being gay or lesbian is itself often an important personal identity, commonly associated with membership in a minority community, and can also be an important part of a social role."

American Psychological Association, American Psychiatric Association,
National Association of Social Workers, in support of overturn of Texas’ “homosexual conduct” law.

Apart from the islamic prohibition and penalty of death for homosexual acts witnessed by four believers, where is the evidence of harm to individuals or society? What could possibly justify torturing people "for the colour of their underwear" or because they are "considered to be homosexual", as you put it, in the laws of a "civil" state that recognises the individual rights to "privacy", "equality" and freedom from "discimination"?
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Post by Arthur »

Glyphdoctor wrote:A God-fearing person has only to be true to God and by doing so he will be true to everyone else. It's not my job to tell him what to do. But I can assure you I would never tell them to live a lie, leave the country, or go to hell.
I'm still not getting it?! You've ruled out the possibility of faithful loving lifelong partnerships on a par with heterosexual ones. So are you advocating celibacy or illicit relationships?

Illicit relationships hidden from a wife, family or friends, is "living a lie" in my book, and are only likely to cause harm to all those involved and those around them.

Enforced celibacy is, in my view, only likley to cause harm to self or to others when it inevitably fails.

And the alternative... ?
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Post by Teddyboy »

"when it inevitably fails"

That's a pitiful statement Arthur !

The desire for sexual expression, or fulfilment, is all in the mind, really! It's only been built up in the modern era to be an actual 'need'. In former generations, many unmarried people channeled their energies into other worthwhile pursuits, without (or so it would seem) any harm to themselves or others. In fact, I'm quite certain that they were often a 'godsend' to the communities in which they served.

I'm not suggesting that this is necessarily right for you, (or anyone, in fact) but you will keep going on as if there are no alternatives for homosexuals, when it's patently obvious that heterosexuals who have found themselves in similar (i.e. no intimate love or sex) situations have found that alternatives are there for those who sincerely seek them!

Maybe it's because you cannot look at the problem objectively, as you are too personally involved. Hence, also, your ongoing misuse of the word 'homophobic', which I'm perfectly sure you know the right meaning of, but prefer to keep using the word as the archetypal 'queer' battering ram, which it has become, to stop discussion or to silence opposition by supposedly belittling anyone brave enough to point out your failings, it's a childish way of proceeding, in my view.

If you want to persuade other folk of the validity of your case, remember that (as you said) 'the truth will make you free', but that's the WHOLE truth, and not just your slant on it!
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Post by JOJO »

Teddyboy wrote:"when it inevitably fails"

That's a pitiful statement Arthur !

The desire for sexual expression, or fulfilment, is all in the mind, really! It's only been built up in the modern era to be an actual 'need'. In former generations, many unmarried people channeled their energies into other worthwhile pursuits, without (or so it would seem) any harm to themselves or others. In fact, I'm quite certain that they were often a 'godsend' to the communities in which they served.
So there you have it Arthur forget about living your life to the full take up cross stitching or basket weaving! :roll: :lol:
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Post by Arthur »

Teddyboy wrote:"when it inevitably fails"

That's a pitiful statement Arthur !

The desire for sexual expression, or fulfilment, is all in the mind, really! It's only been built up in the modern era to be an actual 'need'. In former generations, many unmarried people channeled their energies into other worthwhile pursuits, without (or so it would seem) any harm to themselves or others. In fact, I'm quite certain that they were often a 'godsend' to the communities in which they served.


Don't misquote me TB, I started my sentence with the word "enforced celibacy" Refraining from sex of one's own volition for a period of one's choosing is a personal choice. That individual choice may well be fullfilling and rewarding, as I, and perhaps you, have experienced. State or religious enforcement of abstinence is quite a different matter.

la rahbāniyyat fīl-Islām
"in Islam there is no monasticism"

"There is broad support for abstinence as a necessary and appropriate part of sexuality education. Controversy arises when abstinence is provided to adolescents as a sole choice and where health information on other choices is restricted or misrepresented. Although abstinence is theoretically fully effective, in actual practice abstinence often fails to protect against pregnancy and STIs. Few Americans remain abstinent until marriage; many do not or cannot marry, and most initiate sexual intercourse and other sexual behaviors as adolescents. Although abstinence is a healthy behavioral option for teens, abstinence as a sole option for adolescents is scientifically and ethically problematic. A recent emphasis on abstinence-only programs and policies appears to be undermining more comprehensive sexuality education and other government-sponsored programs. We believe that abstinence-only education programs, as defined by federal funding requirements, are morally problematic, by withholding information and promoting questionable and inaccurate opinions. Abstinence-only programs threaten fundamental human rights to health, information, and life".
"Abstinence and abstinence-only education: A review of U.S. policies and programs" Journal of Adolescent Health 38 (2006) 72–81

"There is no doubt in my mind that the condom crisis in Uganda is being driven by [US abstinence programme policies]. To impose a dogma-driven policy that is fundamentally flawed is doing damage to Africa."
UN secretary general's special envoy for HIV/Aids in Africa
Teddyboy wrote:Maybe it's because you cannot look at the problem objectively, as you are too personally involved. Hence, also, your ongoing misuse of the word 'homophobic', which I'm perfectly sure you know the right meaning of, but prefer to keep using the word as the archetypal 'queer' battering ram, which it has become, to stop discussion or to silence opposition by supposedly belittling anyone brave enough to point out your failings, it's a childish way of proceeding, in my view.
I haven't belittled anyone here, or accused anyone of being "homophobic" to silence them as you suggest. References please...?

You are perfectly at liberty to argue against my views and critique my sources, and counter them with your own.

And in the spirit of an open forum I am also entitled to ask for evidence to substantiate the claims of others which I question. So for example you claim that homosexuality is a "particular choice". Where's your evidence for that assertion?

Why would anyone, if they had a free choice, choose a life where their identity and expression of that identity is criminalised, where they face fear and experience of discrimination, violence and exclusion, and, yes in the countries I mentioned, the death penalty in state laws? If they could follow the easy path and have the social opprobrium of fitting in why wouldn't they?

I may be hopelessly subjective in your eyes. You are perfectly entitled to that view, and if you can show me just cause why I am in error on an issue I am happy to reflect upon it.
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Post by Arthur »

JOJO wrote:So there you have it Arthur forget about living your life to the full take up cross stitching or basket weaving! :roll: :lol:
Now, now, JoJo.

Teddyboy does have a point, and those who don't choose a life of partnership can still have very fulfilling lives. I often think of the great gay and lesbian writers, painters, sculptors, composers and musicians who have gifted the world with their creations, perhaps partly through sublimating their natural drives. But then I think of all the misery of those whose lives were thwarted, and had no opportunities of fullfillment. I'd like to doff my cap to "the father of modern computer science" Alan Turing, famous for cracking the enigma code, who was "chemically castrated" for being gay and who committed suicide two years later. Such a waste. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/se ... lan-turing

These faces are perhaps in every family album, the spinster aunts and unmarried uncles of yore. My uncle was said to have a beautiful allotment, but my mum tells me he was a "deeply unhappy" man, who never married, and "was probably gay". She tells me I also had a great uncle who lived in a shed feeling "ostracised by society" who she says was "probably gay". She thinks whereas left-handedness, longevity, and breast cancer runs through the genes on female line, it's homosexuality, heart disease and a resistance to baldness, in the male line. I certainly scored a genetic jackpot.

All I can say is I don't know why the legislatures and religions of the world are fixated by what I get up to in bed. Sleep... and if that's not possible, a good book is about it, these days.
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Post by Teddyboy »

I didn’t misquote you Arthur. ‘In the olden days’ normal social pressures were as effective a deterrent as “State or religious enforcement of abstinence” for many a person who found themselves ‘left on the shelf’ or who had a duty to devote themselves to caring for a family member or whatever.

“I haven't belittled anyone here, or accused anyone of being "homophobic" to silence them as you suggest.”
Then why do you keep on misusing that word?

“ you claim that homosexuality is a "particular choice".“
I don’t think I did, but I cannot be chewed to look back through all the posts, at nearly half past midnight, to check. If I did actually write that, I apologise, but I suspect that whatever I wrote; I actually meant that to engage in homosexual sex is a “particular choice”.

Regarding “free choice”, I think that the Dr Dr has already touched on that subject, when she wrote that some men would marry some famous glamour-puss, but, in truth, very few of us have “free choice” in most things. In saying that, I cannot disagree with the points you make in that particular paragraph!

"in actual practice abstinence often fails to protect against pregnancy"
Is the author having a laugh here?

"forget about living your life to the full"
Another one who seems to think that sex is the ultimate in human pleasure?
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Post by Glyphdoctor »

Arthur-I am bowing out of this conversation, because you are a lying, deceiving person incapable of having a fair, reasonable, or logical discussion. You have made multiple statements about me that neither reflect what I have said or think and even attributed to me statements made by others in this thread.

For example you said that I think God fearing gays should leave Egypt. Someone else said that, not me, and your comment itself implies that there is only God in Egypt and that people will be safe from God in other countries, which is completely illogical.

You even imagined that my comments about an article were actually comments about you and then made up a lie that I was saying you drink etc. And then accused me of doing exactly what you are doing, which is attributing things to me that have nothing to do with me.

You say you are a full time caregiver for a straight person, failing to mention the straight person is your mother! If the only argument you can give that you are not heterophobic is that you don't hate your mother, then that says something, and is very deceptive.
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Post by Arthur »

Glyphdoctor wrote:... you are a lying, deceiving person incapable of having a fair, reasonable, or logical discussion. You have made multiple statements about me that neither reflect what I have said or think and even attributed to me statements made by others in this thread.

For example you said that I think God fearing gays should leave Egypt.
No. I asked you to clarify your position:"You appear to want them ... to leave the country". In relation to my gay Egyptian partner you had said:
Glyphdoctor wrote:... not that the Egyptian society is preventing him from leaving?
You answered...
Glyphdoctor wrote:I can assure you I would never tell them to ... leave the country
Fine, but I asked you what you believe not what you would tell them.

You still haven't clarified your position. If lifelong celibacy, illicit relationships, faithful partnerships, or campaining for change in cultural attitudes and the law are not answers to the real catch 22 that gay Egyptians face, then what is?

Advising gay Egyptians to be true to God, isn't I'm afraid, a particularly practical response to the very real human dilemma they face being discussed in this thread.

The Egyptian people rose up on the 25 January to overthrow a regime under a banner of equality and social justice. You appear to accept that LGBT Egyptians were part of that struggle. If you want me to endorse your inference that they were doing so only because of "western influences" or because they were drunk, violent, and shameless hangers-on intent on destorying your beautiful revolution, then, no we will not agree.

I have evidenced from testimony collected by Human Rights Watch, and reports to the UN General Assembly from their special rapporteurs that the regime had systematically entrapped, tortured and abused Egyptian gay men just because they were gay. By contrast, you continue to maintain that gay people acting in private face no such discrimination.

I have evidenced the considered opinions of professional health and social care bodies in your country of birth and the World Health Organisation who say that homosexuality is not disordered and that gay people are not wired any differently and need to give and receive love, affection, and trust in identical ways to heterosexuals. I have evidenced that there is no evidenced link between homosexuality and paedophilia. I have evidenced that there are reasoned critiques of islamic majority views on homosexuality.

In the growing number of countries that are legalising same-sex unions, there is no evidence, I'm aware of, demonstrating any negative impact on heterosexuals or the 'institution of marriage' at all, in fact even governments on the right see its benefits:

"Should we teach children about relationships? Yes, we should. Should we teach them about consent? Yes, we should. Should we teach them about the importance of equality, whether you are heterosexual or homosexual? Yes, we should. Should we teach them about civil partnerships being the way of same sex couples showing commitment just as married couples show commitment? Yes, we should. All of those things can help us to create a fairer country..."
David Cameron

In my very first post in this thread I said: "I wouldn't hold out for any significant change in attitudes to LGBT Egyptians in Luxor in the near future." I stand by that, but that doesn't mean that I don't believe that there isn't a compelling case for change, and it doesn't diminish the very real and current suffering of those who need that change.

If I have offended your sexual identity, simply by advocating equality, then I am sorry you have taken offense, as none was intended, and as far as I can see none is evidenced in what I have written.
Glyphdoctor wrote:If the only argument you can give that you are not heterophobic is that you don't hate your mother, then that says something, and is very deceptive.
“Your Lord has commanded that you worship none but Him, and that you be kind to your parents... And act humbly to them in mercy, and say, ‘My Lord, have mercy on them, since they cared for me when I was small.’”
Quran 17:23-24

I don't have to argue that I'm not "heterophobic", whatever you mean by that, I have worked all my adult life in health and social care in the public sector.

Don't you yet understand that you don't have to hate straight people to believe in LGBT equality, you don't need to hate men to be a feminist, hate white people to be anti-racist, hate humans to support animal rights, or hate muslims to love your country, etc?
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Post by Arthur »

Teddyboy wrote:"Gay people in Iran, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, United Arab Emirates, Sudan, Nigeria, Mauritania face the death penalty if caught."

... if so many homosexuals didn't rabbit on and on and on about their perceived unfair treatment and didn't actually single themselves out as being so different; maybe other people wouldn't be so sick of their moaning and misrepresenting of the situations which they find themselves in. (As in the above quotation!)
I don't mean to "rabbit on and on", but a quick 'misrepresentation' from today's Independent:

"Iran’s judiciary have executed three men for sodomy in a case that sheds new light on the official persecution of gay men and women in the authoritarian Islamic Republic. According to a news report carried by the Iranian Student News Agency, the men were put to death by hanging on Sunday morning at Karoun prison in the south western city of Ahvaz. The agency quoted Abdolhamid Amanat, an official at the prosecutor office in Khuzestan Province, as the source of the announcement...

Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, a researcher at Iran Human Rights who is investigating the executions, told The Independent: “Iranian authorities have previously presented such cases as rape, in order to make the execution more acceptable and to avoid too much international attention, but this time the news is not presented as rape.”

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world ... 50671.html

The Guardian also notes:

"Mohammad Mostafaei, a prominent Iranian lawyer who has represented people accused of homosexuality and now lives in exile in Norway, said in an email: "It is not clear whether these three men had any lawyers or were tried without legal representation. Who are their lawyers? I believe they are innocent.

"We should not forget what [president] Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said in a speech during his visit to New York for the UN general assembly when he said we don't have homosexuals in Iran and no one will be punished for homosexuality in the country. Many innocent people have indeed been sentenced to death or hanged in secret based on such ambiguous accusations in Iran [in recent years]."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/se ... ty-charges
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Post by Who2 »

I don't mean to "rabbit on and on", and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on need I go on?............"talk of flogging a dead or even a bleedin slightly comatose horse...8)
"The Salvation of Mankind lies in making everything the responsibility of All"
Sophocles.
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Post by Teddyboy »

I wonder what happens to men and women who have illicit sexual relations in Iran?
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WHAT ?

Post by Jayway »

Dear Teddyboy - - Goodnight - - :)
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Post by LivinginLuxor »

I might agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong!
Stan
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Post by Teddyboy »

"Islamic Shariah Courts in Nigeria evoked worldwide condemnation and protest and debate recently in sentencing some Muslim women and men to death by stoning (rajm) upon conviction for zina. Perhaps only Afghanistan, Iran, Nigeria and Saudi Arabia have this law on their books."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adultery#cite_note-Syed-41

Surely this shows that homosexuals are NOT being singled out in Iran because of their sexual preferences, but that they are having sex outside of marriage? (n.b. it also applies to single heterosexual men.)
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Post by Arthur »

No TB, as the Independent says:

"The recent Ahvaz executions, however, specifically refer to sections 108 and 110 of the Iranian penal code. Section 108 defines sodomy under Iran’s interpretation of Sharia law and the latter rules that the punishment for lavat is death." http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world ... 50671.html
... nothing to do with sex outside marriage.

"Chapter One: The Hadd of Lavat
The Definition of Lavat

Article 108: Lavat is an act of congress [vati] between males whether in [the form of] penetration or of tafkhiz (the rubbing of thighs/of the penis against thighs).
Article 109: Both the active and passive partners to lavat are subject to the hadd [punishment].
Article 110: The hadd [punishment] for lavat where penetration has occurred is death and the method of execution is at the discretion of the Sharia judge.
Article 111: Lavat is punishable by death so long as both the active and passive partners are mature, of sound mind, and have acted of free will."

http://irqr.net/islamicpunishment-e.htm

Note: "...partners are mature, of sound mind, and have acted of free will" so, nothing to do with minors, nothing to do with mental incapacity, nothing to do with coercion, but two consenting adults.

Who2, 2300+ hits? If you don't want to view a thread, don't view it. Simpels 8)
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