Video of Muslim leader decrying Transgender community goes viral: Kuddus refutes

Omar Kuddus, a Muslim global LGBT rights advocate, expresses his views on the message in the YouTube - and offers his refutation.
Feb. 25, 2013 - PRLog -- Gay Muslim activist Omar Kuddus gives the following commentary:

Kuddus Refutes:  

As reported by Gay Star News,   a video in which a Muslim leader decries the transgender community has gone viral on You Tube:

Video can be seen here @ Gay Star News :

The interview shows the founder and president of India's Islamic Research Centre (IRC), a non-profit organization that promotes Islamic teachings,  Faiz Syed ,  answering a question about how the 'other' gender that is neither man nor woman fits into Islam.

In the video he refers to Hijra’s, which is a term in Hindu, used to refer to members of the LGBT community. It is not only slang but the only word for trans.

Ghandu is the slang/ derogative word which literally translates to “asser” “ass f*cker” and would thus never be used to describe LGBTs by religious people.

Thus it can be construed that he is speaking about all homosexuals,  in my opinion.

Before I discuss the video itself,  note  that I am not trying to make the man out to be a complete monster, as he has had many compassionate things to say about Hijra’s who follow the prescribed ethical-spiritual path.

It should also be pointed out and noted that the question put to him and being discussed is about gender, and not about sexual orientation, as such.

However, the obvious reason why he does not address sexual orientation is because within his context, reasoning and understanding, the LGBT framework does not exist;  rather gender and behavior do.  And this has been used as a   justification for their stance.

In my understanding  there is no word for gay / LGBT other than hijra in Urdu or Hindi and thus when someone infers that we are defective or psychologically inferior I along with every one else have the right to object in the strongest terms possible.

Not to do so would advocate and justify discrimination against the Trans/ Hijra community.

Religious people, who are Muslim, in my opinion, have no special privileges as then where do we stop justifying what they say.

The Pope, the Rabi are all held accountable for their actions and words and just because as he views sexuality differently, I am not going to exclude him from scrutiny or accountability.

In a post- modern world boundaries between religion, law , society and culture have become blurred.

Granted,  he has a  unique approach that does praise Hijra’s which will also been reflected in my commentary.

He does make unacceptable  assertion that Hijra’s are 'defective' but he surprisingly counters this by saying that their fate in the eyes of God is exactly that  -  and that God alone knows.

He also says that they are not 'bad'. He then makes a statement against Hijra’s who are unethical and that they do not comply with Islamic law which is to create order and stability in society.

I have repeated many times , even on GSN,

‘There are some Hadith which speak severely of homosexuality (“liwat”) and are usually interpretations by some scholars to what is attributed to be sayings of the prophet Muhammad.

‘However, many liberal Muslims, including myself have serious doubts about their authenticity and such Hadiths have been used in particular times and places, which do not apply to different contexts and time.

‘And as I have pointed out many times, that during the times of the first Caliphs, Muslims did not know what to do with individuals guilty of "liwat".

‘No sahabi (companion) of Muhammad could quote a saying or decision of Muhammad relating to this question.

There are only five references in the Koran which have been cited as referring to gay and lesbian behavior. They deal with ‘effeminate men’ and ‘masculine women’.

The two main references to homosexual behavior are:

• ‘We also sent Lut: He said to his people: “Do ye commit lewdness such as no people in creation (ever) committed before you? For ye practice your lusts on men in preference to women: ye are indeed a people transgressing beyond bounds.”’ Koran 7:80-81

• ‘What! Of all creatures do ye come unto the males, and leave the wives your Lord created for you? Nay, but ye are forward folk.’ Koran 26:165

These references relate to gay sexual activities. Lesbian practices are not mentioned in the Quran at all, unlike in the Hadith which are collections of sayings attributed to Muhammad.

Many Hadiths (ahadith) discuss liwat (sexual intercourse between males). And the most common examples are: ‘When a man mounts another man, the throne of God shakes.’ And: ‘Kill the one that is doing it and also kill the one that it is being done to’ (in reference to the active and passive partners in gay male sexual intercourse).

There is at least one mention of lesbian behavior mentioned in the Hadith: ‘Sihaq (lesbian sexual activity) of women is zina (illegitimate sexual intercourse) among them.’

What needs to be noted is that traditionalist orthodox Muslims generally claim that the Hadith literature contains the authentic sayings of Muhammad. People like me and many liberal Muslims doubt their authenticity.

. . .

It was commented on the GSN article that “The Hijra community does not identify as "transgender," that is a Western construction. The Hijra community functions as a religious sect, and as such have always made use of gender expression to differentiate themselves and create the aura of mystique that surrounds them. What that means is they weren't "born transgender" the way that identity is understood here in the US. Many hijras identify as "third gender" rather than transgender."

It has also been pointed out to me that in India Hijra’s are not Tran genders . It is a different community altogether, with different sets of rules and it is usually the English media that, which in it’s over simplification, clubs it under the transgender term. . .

The indoctrinated mind may be blind, as commentator Rhonda J Mangus says,   but not under the name of my religion will such be accepted. For such comments attract the expected backlash that all Muslims are “pathetic narrow minded” and “have no commonsense what so ever”.

It is time that Muslims stopped burying their heads in the sand and started denying that such errors take place and liberals united to stand up and fight “about Muslim bigotry”.
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