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Philip Slater

Philip Slater

Posted April 22, 2009 | 01:50 PM (EST)

The roots of Homophobia in Iraq and Elsewhere

Read More: Homophobia, Iraq, Home News

Islamic fundamentalists in Iraq are murdering gay men at the urging of their imams. This is their sick way of dealing with their own repressed homosexual impulses--the basis of homophobia. A psychological study found that homophobic men were sexually aroused by images of gay sex, while tolerant men were not. It stands to reason that Islamic fundamentalists--especially imams--would have homosexual leanings: since they obviously have intense feelings of fear, disgust, and loathing toward women, they must love somebody.

American and African homophobes try to justify their neurosis by cherry-picking scripture, a transparent sham. They quote a single line from Leviticus, which says homosexuality is an 'abomination', and claim that this is the 'Word of God'. Leviticus also says eating seafood is an abomination, so this must also be the 'Word of God', but homophobes turn a deaf ear to that one. And at least one-third of the entire book of Leviticus is devoted to the proper way of preparing animal sacrifices, but homophobes don't seem to take all these very, very specific and detailed 'Words of God' very seriously either. Nor do they stone their children to death when the little ones are 'stubborn', for which dereliction of Biblical duty we can only be thankful.

Imagine what a peaceful and pleasant place the world would be if all these angry, bitter, shouting, assaulting, murdering, Bible-thumping, Koran-thumping characters could just relax and let themselves be gay. They wouldn't have to change their appearance. I'd be happy to watch them march in a gay parade with their beards and books and turbans and crosses--it would add a certain leavening to the mix.

Gay men have contributed enormously to every culture. Their impact in every field of human endeavor has been overwhelmingly creative. Whereas homophobes seem to have only one skill: destruction. So my advice to homophobes is: just let yourself be gay. You'll feel better, and I promise I won't look down on you for becoming honest to yourself.

(In his inauguration speech, Obama talked of a new way of doing things. To understand the global cultural paradigm shift that engendered this change--the shift that both Bush and the Taliban have resisted so fiercely, see my website for information on THE CHRYSALIS EFFECT: THE METAMORPHOSIS OF GLOBAL CULTURE).