Violence against LGBT people
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Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people can face violence motivated by hateful attitudes towards their sexuality or gender identity. Violence may be executed by the state, as in laws prescribing corporal punishment for homosexual acts (see homosexuality laws), or by individuals engaging in intimidation, mobbing, assault, or lynching (see gay bashing, trans bashing). Violence targeted at people because of their perceived sexuality can be psychological or physical and can extend to murder. These actions may be motivated by homophobia, lesbophobia, biphobia, transphobia, and may be influenced by cultural, religious, or political mores and biases.
Currently, homosexual acts are legal in almost all Western countries, and in many of these countries violence against LGBT people is classified as a hate crime, with such violence being often connected with conservative or religious leaning ideologies which condemn homosexuality, or being perpetrated by individuals who associate homosexuality to being weak, ill, feminine, or immoral. Outside the West, many countries, particularly those where the dominant religion is Islam, but also many countries in the Commonwealth (e.g. Uganda, Nigeria, Malaysia and Jamaica), most African (excluding South Africa) and some Asian countries (excluding Japan and Taiwan), and some former-Communist countries in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, such as Russia and Serbia, are currently very dangerous for LGBT people because of discrimination against homosexuals which influences both discriminatory legislation and physical violence.
Historically, state-sanctioned persecution of homosexuals was mostly limited to male homosexuality, termed "sodomy". During the medieval and early modern period, the penalty for sodomy was usually death. During the modern period (from the 19th century to the mid-20th century) in the Western world, the penalty was usually a fine or imprisonment.
As of 2009, there remain under 80 countries worldwide where homosexual acts remain illegal (notably throughout the Middle East, Central Asia and in most of Africa, but also in some of the Caribbean and Oceania) including five that carry the death penalty.
- 1 State-sanctioned violence
- 2 Criminal assault
- 3 Motivations
- 4 See also
- 5 References
- 6 External links
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The Middle East
An early law against sexual intercourse between men is recorded in Leviticus by the Hebrew people, prescribing the death penalty. A violent law regarding homosexual rape is prescribed in the Middle Assyrian Law Codes (1075 BCE), stating: "If a man lay with his neighbor, when they have prosecuted him (and) convicted him, they shall lie with him (and) turn him into a eunuch". This misinterpreted code doesn't condemn homosexuality; it describes a situation where a man has forced sex upon another person, who then has the option of bringing a charge against him. The perpetrator is punished while the victim is not, therefore the crime is homosexual rape.
In the account given in Tacitus Germania, the death penalty was reserved for two kinds of capital offenses: military treason or desertion was punished by hanging, and moral infamy (cowardice and homosexuality: ignavos et imbelles at corpore infames); Gordon translates corpore infames as "unnatural prostitutes"; Tacitus refers to male homosexuality, see David F. Greenberg, The construction of homosexuality, p. 242 f. Scholarship compares the later Germanic concept of Old Norse argr, Langobardic arga, which combines the meanings "effeminate, cowardly, homosexual", see Jaan Puhvel, 'Who were the Hittite hurkilas pesnes?' in: A. Etter (eds.), O-o-pe-ro-si (FS Risch), Walter de Gruyter, 1986, p. 154.
In Republican Rome, the poorly attested Lex Scantinia penalized an adult male for committing a sex crime (stuprum) against an underage male citizen (ingenuus). It is unclear whether the penalty was death or a fine. The law may also have been used to prosecute adult male citizens who willingly took a pathic role in same-sex acts, but prosecutions are rarely recorded and the provisions of the law are vague; as John Boswell has noted, "if there was a law against homosexual relations, no one in Cicero's day knew anything about it." When the Roman Empire came under Christian rule, all male homosexual activity was increasingly repressed, often on pain of death. In 342 CE, the Christian emperors Constantius and Constans declared same-sex marriage to be illegal. Shortly after, in the year 390 CE, emperors Valentinian II, Theodosius I and Arcadius declared homosexual sex to be illegal and those who were guilty of it were condemned to be publicly burned alive. Emperor Justinian I (527–565 CE) made homosexuals a scapegoat for problems such as "famines, earthquakes, and pestilences."
Laws and codes prohibiting homosexual practice were in force in Europe from the fourth to the twentieth centuries, and Muslim countries have had similar laws from the beginnings of Islam in the seventh century up to and including the present day. Abbasid Baghdad, under the Caliph Al-Hadi (785–786 CE), punished homosexuality with death.
During the Middle Ages, the Kingdom of France and the City of Florence also instated the death penalty. In Florence, a young boy named Giovanni di Giovanni (1350–1365?) was castrated and burned between the thighs with a red-hot iron by court order under this law. These punishments continued into the Renaissance, and spread to the Swiss canton of Zürich. Knight Richard von Hohenberg (died 1482) was burned at the stake together with his lover, his young squire, during this time. In France, French writer Jacques Chausson (1618–1661) was also burned alive for attempting to seduce the son of a nobleman.
In England, the Buggery Act of 1534 made sodomy and bestiality punishable by death. This act was replaced in 1828, but sodomy remained punishable by death under the new act until 1861. The last executions were in 1835.
In Nazi Germany, homosexuals were among the groups targeted by the Holocaust (See Persecution of homosexuals in Nazi Germany and the Holocaust). (In 1936, the homosexual Federico García Lorca was executed by right-wing rebels who became Franco's dictatorship in Spain, Hitler's ally.) Modern allies in Neonazis generally oppose homosexuality to the extent of supporting a renewed persecution the way it took place in Nazi Germany. Being homosexual is equated with being unmasculine and the German word ″Schwul″ ('gay') is used by German Neonazis as a curse word.
- Iran: Since 1979, the government has executed more than 4,000 people charged with homosexual acts.
- Saudi Arabia: Although the maximum punishment for homosexuality is execution, the government tends to use other punishments (fines, prison sentence, and whipping), unless it feels that homosexuals have challenged state authority by engaging in LGBT social movements.
- Parts of Nigeria and Somalia
Countries where homosexual acts are criminalized but not punished by death, by region, include:
- Algeria, Angola, Botswana, Burundi, Cameroon, Comoros, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria (death penalty in some states), Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia (death penalty in some states), South Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe
- Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, India, Kuwait, Malaysia, Maldives, Oman, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Syria, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Gaza Strip under Palestinian Authority
- Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago
Afghanistan, where such acts remain punishable with fines and a prison sentence, dropped the death penalty after the fall of the Taliban in 2001, who had mandated it from 1996. India criminalized homosexuality until June 2, 2009, when the High Court of Delhi declared section 377 of the Indian Penal Code invalid. India has reinstated its ban on homosexuality on December 11, 2013, making it a criminal offense punishable by imprisonment up to a life time.
International human rights organizations such as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International condemn laws that make homosexual relations between consenting adults a crime. Since 1994, the United Nations Human Rights Committee has also ruled that such laws violated the right to privacy guaranteed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Even in countries where homosexuality is legal (most countries outside of Africa and the Middle East), there are reports of homosexual people being targeted with bullying or physical assault or even homicide.
According to the Grupo Gay da Bahia, Brazil's oldest gay rights NGO, the rate of murders of homosexuals in Brazil is particularly high, with a reported 3,196 cases over the 30-year period of 1980 to 2009 (or about 0.7 cases per 100,000 population per annum). Brazilian gay group Grupo Gay da Bahia (GGB) reported 190 documented alleged homophobic murders in Brazil in 2008, accounting for about 0.5% of intentional homicides in Brazil (homicide rate 22 per 100,000 population as of 2008). 64% of the victims were gay men, 32% were transvestites, and 4% were lesbians. By comparison, the FBI reported five homophobic murders in the United States during 2008, corresponding to 0.03% of intentional homicides (homicide rate 5.4 per 100,000 population as of 2008). Homophobic murders in Brazil are sometimes referred to as homocausto or "homocaust", a portmanteau of homosexual and holocaust.
The numbers produced by the Grupo Gay da Bahia (GGB) have occasionally been contested on the grounds that they include all murders of LGBT people reported in the media — that is, not only those motivated by bias against homosexuals. Reinaldo de Azevedo, columnist of the right-wing Veja magazine, Brazil's most read weekly publication, called the GGB's methodology "unscientific" based on the above objection: that they make no distinction between murders motivated by bias and those that were not. On the high level of murders of transsexuals, he suggested transsexuals' allegedly high involvement with the drug trade may expose them to higher levels of violence as compared to non-transgender homosexuals and heterosexuals. A Brazilian gay blog has investigated a sample of 30 murders of gay people reported on the media in 2009 — including some of those used by the GGB in its national statistic report. It determined that the "large majority" of them were committed by the homosexual partners of the victims or those who were otherwise in a relationship with them (e.g., male prostitutes), with some others being killed due to unpaid debts with gangs involved in drug trafficking.
In many parts of the world, including much of the European Union and United States, acts of violence are legally classified as hate crimes, which entail harsher sentences if convicted. In some countries, this form of legislation extends to verbal abuse as well as physical violence.
Violent hate crimes against LGBT people tend to be especially brutal, even compared to other hate crimes: "an intense rage is present in nearly all homicide cases involving gay male victims". It is rare for a victim to just be shot; he is more likely to be stabbed multiple times, mutilated, and strangled. "They frequently involved torture, cutting, mutilation... showing the absolute intent to rub out the human being because of his (sexual) preference". In a particularly brutal case in the United States, on March 14, 2007, in Wahneta, Florida, 25-year-old Ryan Keith Skipper was found dead from 20 stab wounds and a slit throat. His body had been dumped on a dark, rural road less than 2 miles from his home. His two alleged attackers, William David Brown, Jr., 20, and Joseph Eli Bearden, 21, were indicted for robbery and first-degree murder. Highlighting their malice and contempt for the victim, the accused killers allegedly drove around in Skipper's blood-soaked car and bragged of killing him. According to a sheriff's department affidavit, one of the men stated that Skipper was targeted because "he was a faggot."
In Canada in 2008, police-reported data found that approximately 10% of all hate crimes in the country were motivated by sexual orientation. Of these, 56% were of a violent nature. In comparison, 38% of all racially motivated offenses were of a violent nature.
In the same year in the United States, according to Federal Bureau of Investigation data, though 4,704 crimes were committed due to racial bias and 1,617 were committed due to sexual orientation, only one murder and one forcible rape were committed due to racial bias, whereas five murders and six rapes were committed based on sexual orientation. In Northern Ireland in 2008, 160 homophobic incidents and 7 transphobic incidents were reported. Of those incidents, 68.4% were violent crimes; significantly higher than for any other bias category. By contrast, 37.4% of racially motivated crimes were of a violent nature.
Legislation against homophobic hate crimes
|This section's factual accuracy may be compromised due to out-of-date information. (May 2013)|
In the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, twelve have legislation specifically designed for bias based on sexual orientation (as opposed to generic anti-discrimination legislation) to be counted as aggravating circumstance in the commission of a crime.
The United States does not have federal legislation marking sexual orientation as criteria for hate crimes, but several states, including the District of Columbia, enforce harsher penalties for crimes where real or perceived sexual orientation may have been a motivator. Among these 12 countries as well, only the United States has criminal law that specifically mentions gender identity, and even then only in 11 states and the District of Colombia. In November 2010, the United Nations General Assembly voted 79-70 to remove "sexual orientation" from the Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions, a list of unjustified reasons for executions, replacing it with "discriminatory reasons on any basis". The resolution specifically mentions a large number of groups, including race, religion, linguistic differences, refugees, street children and indigenous peoples.
Legal and police response to these types of hate crimes is hard to gauge, however. Lack of reporting by authorities on the statistics of these crimes and under-reporting by the victims themselves are factors for this difficulty. Often a victim will not report a crime as it will shed unwelcome light on their orientation and invite more victimization.
Alleged judicative bias
Legal defenses like the Gay Panic Defense allow for more lenient punishments for people accused of beating, torturing, or killing homosexuals because of their orientation. These arguments posit that the attacker was so enraged by their victim's advances as to cause temporary insanity, leaving them unable to stop themselves or tell right from wrong. In these cases, if the loss of faculties is proven, or sympathized to the jury, an initially severe sentence may be significantly reduced. In several common law countries, the mitigatory defense of provocation has been used in violent attacks against LGBT persons, which has led several Australian states and territories to modify their legislation, in order to prevent or reduce the using of this legal defense in cases of violent responses to non-violent homosexual advances.
There have been several highly publicized cases where people convicted of violence against LGBT people have received shorter sentences. One such case is that of Kenneth Brewer. On 30 September 1997, he met Stephen Bright at a local gay bar. He bought the younger man drinks and they later went back to Brewer's apartment. While there, Brewer made a sexual advance toward Bright, and Bright beat him to death. Bright was initially charged with second-degree murder, but he was eventually convicted of third-degree assault and was sentenced to one year in prison. Cases like Bright's are not isolated. In 2001, Aaron Webster was beaten to death by a group of youths armed with baseball bats and a pool cue while hanging around an area of Stanley Park frequented by gay men. Ryan Cran was convicted of manslaughter in the case in 2004 and released on parole in 2009 after serving only 4 years of his six-year sentence. Two youths were tried under Canada's Youth Criminal Justice Act and sentenced to three years after pleading guilty. A fourth assailant was acquitted.
Judges are not immune to letting their own prejudices affect their judgment either. In 1988, Texas Judge Jack Hampton gave a man 30 years for killing two gay men, instead of the life sentence requested by the prosecutor. After handing down his judgment, he said: "I don't much care for queers cruising the streets picking up teenage boys ...[I] put prostitutes and gays at about the same level ... and I'd be hard put to give somebody life for killing a prostitute."
In 1987, a Florida judge trying a case concerning the beating to death of a gay man asked the prosecutor, "That's a crime now, to beat up a homosexual?" The prosecutor responded, "Yes, sir. And it's also a crime to kill them." "Times have really changed," the judge replied. The judge, Daniel Futch, maintained that he was joking, but was removed from the case.
Attacks on gay pride parades
LGBT Pride Parades often attract violence because of their public nature. Though many countries where such events take place attempt to provide police protection to participants, some would prefer that the parades not happen, and police either ignore or encourage violent protesters. The country of Moldova has shown particular contempt to marchers, shutting down official requests to hold parades and allowing protesters to intimidate and harm any who try to march anyway. In 2007, after being denied a request to hold a parade, a small group of LGBT people tried to hold a small gathering. They were surrounded by a group twice their size who shouted derogatory things at them and pelted them with eggs. The gathering proceeded even so, and they tried to lay flowers at the Monument to the Victims of Repression. They were denied the opportunity, however, by a large group of police claiming they needed permission from city hall.
The following year, a parade was again attempted. A bus carried approximately 60 participants to the capital, but before they could disembark, an angry crowd surrounded the bus. They shouted things like "let's get them out and beat them up," and "beat them to death, don't let them escape" at the frightened passengers. The mob told the activists that if they wanted to leave the bus unharmed, they would have to destroy all of their pride materials. The passengers complied and the march was called off. All the while, police stood passively about 100 meters away, taking no action even though passengers claimed at least nine emergency calls were made to police while on the bus.
Russia's officials are similarly adverse to Pride Parades. Mayor of Moscow Yury Luzhkov has repeatedly banned marches, calling them "satanic". Pride participants instead tried to peacefully assemble and deliver a petition to city hall regarding the right of assembly and freedom of expression. They were met by skinheads and other protesters, and police who had closed off the square and immediately arrested activists as they entered. As some were being arrested, other participants were attacked by protesters. Police did nothing. Around eleven women and two men were arrested and left in the heat, denied medical attention, and verbally abused by police officers. The officers told the women, "No one needs lesbians, no one will ever get you out of here." When participants were released from custody hours later, they were pelted by eggs and shouted at by protesters who had been waiting.
Hungary, on the other hand, has tried to afford the best protection they can to marchers, but cannot stem the flow of violence. In 2008, hundreds of people participated in the Budapest Dignity March. Police, on alert due to attacks on two LGBT-affiliated businesses earlier in the week, erected high metal barriers on either side of the street the march was to take place on. Hundreds of angry protesters threw petrol bombs and rocks at police in retaliation. A police van was set on fire and two police officers were injured in the attacks. During the parade itself, protesters threw Molotov cocktails, eggs and firecrackers at marchers. At least eight participants were injured. Forty-five people were detained in connection with the attacks, and observers called the spectacle "the worst violence during the dozen years the Gay Pride Parade has taken place in Budapest."
Advocacy in song lyrics
As a result of the strong anti-homosexual culture in Jamaica, many reggae and dancehall artists, such as Buju Banton, Elephant Man, Sizzla, have published song lyrics advocating violence against homosexuals. Similarly, hip-hop music occasionally includes aggressively homophobic lyrics, but has since appeared to reform.
Banton wrote a song when he was 15 years old that became a hit when he released it years later in 1992 called "Boom Bye Bye". The song is about violently murdering homosexuals and "advocated the shooting of gay men, pouring acid on them and burning them alive." A song by Elephant Man proclaims: "When you hear a lesbian getting raped/It's not our fault ... Two women in bed/That's two sodomites who should be dead."
Due to the violent, homophobic nature of some of their songs, several reggae artists have been investigated by police for promoting anti-gay violence. Some lyrics have been investigated by Scotland Yard, and Sizzla was barred from entering the United Kingdom in 2004 while being investigated for promoting murder through his music.
Gay rights advocates have started the group Stop Murder Music to combat the promotion of hate and violence by artists. The group organized protests, causing some venues to refuse to allow the targeted artists to perform, and the loss of sponsors. In 2007, Stop Murder Music introduced the Reggae Compassionate Act, which states that "the artists promise not to produce music or make public statements inciting hatred against gay people. Neither can they authorise the re-release of previous homophobic songs." Several artists have signed the Act, including Buju Banton, Beenie Man, Sizzla and Capleton, but have later denied making any commitment to stop promoting homophobia.
During the 1980s, North America's skinhead scene saw the development of viciously anti-gay music and the advocacy of anti-gay violence. This occurred with the ascendancy of neo-Nazi pop culture and racist hate-rock.
The lyrics to the song, "Tooling for Anus", by 80s Detroit hardcore band, The Meatmen, explicitly states "I'm not a fag and I'll never be, afraid to hit the can to take a pee, afraid some sissy'll grab my ass, I'll stick his face with broken glass" 
Today, fans of the Meatmen try to play down their legendary anti-gay activity, saying that it was all, purportedly, meant as a "joke".
Michael Jackman, writer for Detroit's "Metro Times," did an interview with Meatmen singer Tesco Vee, who said that the song's origins dated to the late 1970s and early 1980s in Detroit, when hardcore punk bands, unable to get booked in bars and in a city lacking all-ages clubs, would do "punk nights" at gay men's bars, creating what Vee called a "worlds collide" sort of thing.
However, Vee's story is belied by the fact that the band not only promoted hatred against gay men, but more aggressively against lesbians. The lyrics to the Meatmen's song "Lesbian Death Dirge" read, "Twisted women in a line. Emotionally traumatized, Mom and pop think you're slime, We'll steamroll you. You'll eat our poop. Look at those tracks, I'm gonna drive my motorcycle up those saggy glad bags, get your sh*t together, sucking a good stiff will do you good"  Despite all this, as well as the fact that Tesco Vee had performed a song called "Morrissey Must Die" about the Smiths' self-identified asexual frontman and referred to him as a "fag," they later contributed a cover of the song "How Soon Is Now?" on a Smiths tribute album.
||This section possibly contains original research. (April 2013)|
The vast majority of homophobic criminal assault is perpetrated by male aggressors on male victims, and is connected to aggressive heterosexual machismo or male chauvinism. Theorists including Calvin Thomas and Judith Butler have suggested that homophobia can be rooted in an individual's fear of being identified as gay. Homophobia in men is correlated with insecurity about masculinity. For this reason, allegedly homophobia is rampant in sports, and in the subculture of its supporters, that are considered stereotypically "male", such as football and rugby.
These theorists have argued that a person who expresses homophobia does so not only to communicate their beliefs about the class of gay people, but also to distance themselves from this class and its social status. Thus, by distancing themselves from gay people, they are reaffirming their role as a heterosexual in a heteronormative culture, thereby attempting to prevent themselves from being labeled and treated as a gay person.
Various psychoanalytic theories explain homophobia as a threat to an individual's own same-sex impulses, whether those impulses are imminent or merely hypothetical. This threat causes repression, denial or reaction formation.
Some verses of the Bible are often interpreted as forbidding homosexual relations.
And if a man lie with mankind, as with womankind, both of them have committed abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.
Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
The above verses are the cause of tension between the devout of the Abrahamic religions and members of the LGBT community. It is viewed by many as an outright condemnation of homosexual acts between men, and, more commonly in ancient times than today, justification for violence.
In Religion Dispatches magazine, Candace Chellew-Hodge argues that the six or so verses that are often cited to condemn LGBT people are referring instead to "abusive sex." She states that the Bible has no condemnation for "loving, committed, gay and lesbian relationships" and that Jesus was silent on the subject.
In today's society, most Christian denominations welcome people attracted to the same sex, but teach that same sex relationships and homosexual sex are sinful. These denominations include the Roman Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox church, the Methodist Church, and many other mainline denominations, such as the Reformed Church in America and the American Baptist Church, as well as Conservative Evangelical organizations and churches, such as the Evangelical Alliance, and the Southern Baptist Convention. Likewise, Pentecostal churches such as the Assemblies of God, as well as Restorationist churches, like Jehovah's Witnesses and LDS Church, also take the position that homosexual activity is immoral.
Some Christian groups advocate conversion therapy and promote ex-gay groups. One such group, Exodus International, argued that conversion therapy may be a useful tool for decreasing same-sex desires, and, while former affiliates of Exodus continue with such views, Exodus has since repudiated the organization's mission  and apologised for the pain and hurt and promoting "sexual orientation change efforts and reparative theories about sexual orientation that stigmatized parents." The medical and scientific consensus in the United States is that conversion therapy is likely harmful and should be avoided because it may exploit guilt and anxiety, thereby damaging self-esteem and leading to depression and even suicide. There is a broad concern in the mental health community that the advancement of conversion therapy itself causes social harm by disseminating inaccurate views about sexual orientation and the ability of gay, lesbian and bisexual people to lead happy, healthy lives. This promotion of the idea that homosexuality is immoral and can be corrected may make would-be attackers of homosexuals feel justified in that they are "doing God's work" by ridding the world of LGBT people.
Pope Benedict XVI, then the leader of the Roman Catholic Church stoked this sentiment as well, when he stated that "protecting" humanity from homosexuality was just as important as saving the world from climate change and that all relationships beyond traditional heterosexual ones are a "destruction of God's work". Further, a Vatican official called homosexuality "a deviation, an irregularity, a wound". While the Catholic Church teaches that same-sex attraction itself is not sinful, homosexual acts are "acts of grave depravity". Homosexual congregation members are to be accepted and not discriminated against, but are asked to remain celibate.
Evangelicals in Africa sometimes use religion to justify violence against LGBT people and criminalizing homosexual behavior. Archbishops Peter Akinola of Nigeria and Henry Orombi of Uganda would not condemn violence against gays and lesbians when questioned on the issue at the Global Anglican Future Conference. Mark Russell, Chief Executive of Church Army, expressed outrage over their resistance, stating "Quite honestly [refusal to condemn violence against gay people in their home countries] is disgraceful, it sullies their cause, and is totally un-Christian. You cannot justify violence in God's name. Period. [...] Those who perpetrate violence against gay people in Africa now can use this silence to justify their behaviour. Christians must speak up and say this is wrong."
The Qur'an, the book of Islam, cites the story of the "people of Lot" (also known as the people of Sodom and Gomorrah), destroyed by the wrath of Allah because they engaged in lustful carnal acts between men.
The legal punishment for sodomy has varied among juristic schools: some prescribe capital punishment; while other prescribe a milder discretionary punishment. Homosexual activity is a crime and forbidden in most Muslim-majority countries. In some relatively secular Muslim-majority countries such as Indonesia, Jordan and Turkey, this is not the case.
The Qur'an, much like the Bible and Torah, has a vague condemnation of homosexuality and how it should be dealt with, leaving it open to interpretation. For this reason, Islamic jurists have turned to the collections of the hadith (sayings of Muhammad) and akhbar (accounts of his life). These, on the other hand, are perfectly clear and particularly harsh. Ibn al-Jawzi[disambiguation needed] records Muhammad as cursing sodomites in several hadith, and recommending the death penalty for both the active and passive partners in same-sex acts.
Sunan al-Tirmidhi again reports Muhammad as having prescribed the death penalty for both the active and the passive partner: "Whoever you find committing the sin of the people of Lot, kill them, both the one who does it and the one to whom it is done." The overall moral or theological principle is that a person who performs such actions challenges the harmony of God's creation, and is therefore a revolt against God.
Some imams still preach their views, stating that homosexuals and "women who act like men" should be executed under the Islamic law. Abu Usamah at Green Lane Mosque in Birmingham defended his words to followers by saying "If I were to call homosexuals perverted, dirty, filthy dogs who should be murdered, that's my freedom of speech, isn't it?" Other leaders decry this sort of preaching.
Other contemporary Islamic views are that the ″crime of homosexuality is one of the greatest of crimes, the worst of sins and the most abhorrent of deeds″.
In Judaism, the death penalty has not been used in practice for more than 2000 years, though many movements still view homosexual acts as sinful. Orthodox Judaism generally prohibits homosexual conduct. While there is disagreement about which acts come under core prohibitions, all of Orthodox Judaism puts certain core homosexual acts, including male-male anal sex in the category of yehareg ve'al ya'avor—"die rather than transgress"—the small category of Biblically-prohibited acts (also including murder, idolatry, adultery, and incest) which an Orthodox Jew is obligated under the laws of Self-sacrifice under Jewish Law to die rather than do.
- Meyer, Doug (December 2012). "An Intersectional Analysis of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) People's Evaluations of Anti-Queer Violence". Gender & Society 26 (6): 849–873. doi:10.1177/0891243212461299.
- Stotzer, R.: Comparison of love Crime Rates Across Protected and Unprotected Groups, Williams Institute, 2007–06. Retrieved on 2007-08-09.
- Stewart, Chuck (2010). The Greenwood Encyclopedia of LGBT Issues Worldwide. Santa Barbara, California: Greenwood Press. ISBN 978-0-313-34231-8.
- "New Benefits for Same-Sex Couples May Be Hard to Implement Abroad". ABC News. June 22, 2009. 2009 Report on State Sponsored Homophobia (2009), published by The International Lesbian Gay Bisexual Trans and Intersex Association.
- Pritchard, p. 181.
- Pritchard, p. 468.
- John Boswell, Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality: Gay People in Western Europe from the Beginning of the Christian Era to the Fourteenth Century (University of Chicago Press, 1980), pp. 63, 67–68, quotation on p. 69. See also Craig Williams, Roman Homosexuality: Ideologies of Masculinity in Classical Antiquity (Oxford University Press, 1999), p. 116; Eva Cantarella, Bisexuality in the Ancient World (Yale University Press, 1992), p. 106ff.; Thomas A.J. McGinn, Prostitution, Sexuality and the Law in Ancient Rome (Oxford University Press, 1998), pp. 140–141; Amy Richlin, The Garden of Priapus: Sexuality and Aggression in Roman Humor (Oxford University Press, 1983, 1992), pp. 86, 224; Jonathan Walters, "Invading the Roman Body," in Roman Sexualites (Princeton University Press, 1997), pp. 33–35, noting particularly the overly broad definition of the Lex Scantinia by Adolf Berger, Encyclopedic Dictionary of Roman Law (American Philosophical Society, 1953, reprinted 1991), pp. 559 and 719. Freeborn Roman men could engage in sex with males of lower status, such as prostitutes and slaves, without moral censure or losing their perceived masculinity, as long as they took the active, penetrating role; see Sexuality in ancient Rome.
- (Theodosian Code 9.7.6): All persons who have the shameful custom of condemning a man's body, acting the part of a woman's to the sufferance of alien sex (for they appear not to be different from women), shall expiate a crime of this kind in avenging flames in the sight of the people.
- Theodosian Code 9.8.3: "When a man marries and is about to offer himself to men in womanly fashion (quum vir nubit in feminam viris porrecturam), what does he wish, when sex has lost all its significance; when the crime is one which it is not profitable to know; when Venus is changed to another form; when love is sought and not found? We order the statutes to arise, the laws to be armed with an avenging sword, that those infamous persons who are now, or who hereafter may be, guilty may be subjected to exquisite punishment.
- Justinian Novels 77, 144; Michael Brinkschröde, "Christian Homophobia: Four Central Discourses," in Combatting Homophobia: Experiences and Analyses Pertinent to Education (LIT Verlag, 2011), p. 166.
- Rocke, Michael (1996). Forbidden Friendships, Homosexuality and Male Culture in Renaissance Florence. Oxford University Press. pp. 24, 227, 356, 360. ISBN 0-19-512292-5.
- Meyer, Michael J (2000). Literature and Homosexuality. Rodopi. p. 206. ISBN 90-420-0519-X.
- "Schwule Nazis? Ein brisantes Thema für die rechtsextreme Szene". Retrieved 14 June 2015.
- "ILGA publishes 2010 report on State sponsored homophobia throughout the world". International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association. 2010.
- Kennedy, Dominic (November 13, 2007). "Gays Deserve Torture, Death Penalty, Iranian Minister Says". The Times.
- "Homosexuality and Religion".
- "Is Beheading Really the Punishment for Homosexuality in Saudi Arabia?".
- 2011 Report on State-sponsored Homophobia
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