CTV News in Edmonton recently highlighted the case of John Calvin, a gay Palestinian who converted from Islam to Christianity and was recently denied refugee asylum in Edmonton by the Canadian government. We urge our Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, to take action immediately to withdraw the deportation order and allow Calvin asylum in Canada.
Assistant Professor - MacEwan University
Dr. Junaid Jahangir is an Assistant Professor of Economics at MacEwan University. He is inspired by the elder Muslim mystics. With Dr. Hussein Abdul Latif, he has co-authored "Islamic law and Muslim same-sex unions."
Some neo-conservative Muslim leaders exhibit a spiritually stingy outlook when they caution their followers against celebrating Christmas. They also recognize the oppression against Aasia Bibi, a poor Christian woman in Pakistan, who has been suffering for half a decade in prison on false blasphemy charges.
12/09/2014 01:04 EST
This Sunday, a Yellow Cab driver in Edmonton left a drag queen stranded in below freezing temperature at 2 a.m. Realizing that his customer sat in the cab dressed in drag, the driver bluntly told him to "get out." The taxi company has fired the cab driver. But should the cab driver lose his job over this incident? What if he is merely a product of the culture shaped by fear based morality that teaches hate towards the LGBTQ community? Would firing him stem homophobia or fuel it?
12/03/2014 06:04 EST
Recently, Liberal MLA Laurie Blakeman proposed Bill 202 that would allow students to start a Gay Straight Alliance club in their schools. However, Alberta Premier Jim Prentice wants to counter the "unfair and unbalanced approach" of Bill 202. For Canada's LGBTQ youth, whose suicide statistics are startlingly high, GSAs may make a difference between life and death. Indeed, the cardinal principle of many religions is to love our neighbours as we love ourselves. If we cannot show grace for our LGBTQ neighbours and families, are we really living up to that hallowed principle of our own faiths?
11/29/2014 12:38 EST
Last month, Muslims across the world celebrated the feast of sacrifice, Eid al Adha, which takes place after the annual pilgrimage
11/16/2014 10:16 EST
She had dared to drink water in a cup meant for the local Muslims. Her co-workers maligned her faith in a place where Christians are perceived as "unclean sweepers". Standing up for her integrity she has languished in prison for the last five years. Given her family went into hiding; she may have been relatively safer in prison.
11/12/2014 08:36 EST
Dying with dignity is construed as giving up instead of fighting an internal aggressor and that such an approach is not consistent with the medical ethic, which can also be captured by the Prophet's teaching, "Do no harm and accept no harm."
10/22/2014 01:02 EDT
Conservative Muslims strongly denounce terrorism. But do they stand up and speak out for human rights that get trampled every day in Muslim countries? Muslim activists assert their voices at great personal cost. Recently, Pakistani lawyer, Rashid Rehman, who tried to defend a University lecturer against blasphemy charges was murdered. His killer remains on the loose.
09/18/2014 12:49 EDT
A friend told me recently that the horrific conduct of ISIS -- Islamic State in Iraq and Syria -- has left many people with the impression that all Muslims are like ISIS. However, a simple Google search reveals the Muslim response to ISIS.
08/27/2014 08:45 EDT
This is not a religious conflict, as many Jews and Muslims stand by each other in the Diaspora. Jews have stand against Islamophobia just as Muslims condemn anti-Semitism. Inspiring stories exist where Muslims and Jews have shielded each other from oppression. We have to eschew jingoistic propaganda, rhetorical questions and the blame games to listen to the voices that call for radical empathy. We need to hear the families of the murdered youth Naftali Fraenkel and Abu Khdeir who reached out to each other.
08/07/2014 12:37 EDT
Those who are mired in bigotry have and will continue to derail efforts towards peace by resorting to fear mongering and smear tactics. Yet, the Persian mystic Rumi taught us to not be afraid of sullying our reputation. This is especially true when the lives of our children, both Jewish and Muslim alike are at stake.
07/13/2014 11:06 EDT
Instead of contravening Islamic teachings on privacy by probing the private affairs of gay men, morality enforcers can make a difference in the lives of vulnerable children by putting all their energies towards combating exploitation and abuse.
04/29/2014 12:58 EDT
Recently, the Alberta Legislature voted down a motion that urged the government to support students who want to set up gay
04/10/2014 05:12 EDT
Prescribing gay Muslims to remain in the closet is a bullying tactic that has no basis in the Islamic tradition. Likewise, caricaturing the genuine human need for mawadda as a compulsive desire is a dehumanizing tactic that violates the core Islamic values of human dignity, egalitarianism, compassion and social justice.
03/31/2014 05:38 EDT
Recently, Muslims of many stripes expressed outrage at the misogynist jokes of Abu Eesa, a U.K. based instructor at the Al
03/20/2014 11:37 EDT
Why must anyone view International Women's Day negatively as opposing Islam and not positively as complementing the teachings of Islam? Why must anyone seek to enact a rigid uniformity by bull dozing diversity when, in Islam, differences of opinion are viewed as a sign of Allah's grace?
03/13/2014 05:44 EDT
Early this month, anticipating stiff opposition, Syed Adnan Hussein showed much inner strength to openly initiate a religiously plural, gender equal and queer affirming Unity mosque in Halifax. Unfortunately, soon after the media announcement from CBC, online spiritual bullying by homophobic Muslims began. Their comments, which alluded to the "homosexual agenda" and "the wrath of Allah", showed lack of a reasonable understanding of a mature faith.
12/21/2013 08:50 EST
The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms grants conservative Muslims the freedom to abide by their personal moral laws, but it does not grant them the right to expose another minority group to contempt. By inviting speakers like Dr. Bilal Philips and Dr. Abdullah Hakim Quick, the Muslim Council of Calgary seems content to draw lines against the LGBTIQ community including its own Muslim LGBTIQ brothers and sisters.
11/19/2013 12:18 EST
In April, the Edmonton Islamic Academy distanced itself from a visiting Imam's homophobic comments given to a group of junior high students. Not satisfied with the school measures, and concerned about the impact of the lecture on both straight and gay Muslim youth, human rights activist Rob Wells took his placards to protest alone outside the Academy. He got assaulted on two different occasions.
08/13/2013 05:23 EDT
Does American Islamic scholar Shaykh Hamza really want his followers to aspire to teachings that emphasize deviation instead of diversity? By reducing their existence to a sexual act or the manner of speech, does he really wish to dehumanize queer individuals?
07/12/2013 05:27 EDT
SUBSCRIBE AND FOLLOW