Thursday, November 2, 2006

Uncovered Meat & Other Horror Stories

If you've read my recent posting "9 Weird Things About Me", then you may recall that I have a propensity to wander the streets of Agdal with cat food in my purse in order to feed its strays. Little did I know that by doing so - by feeding the city's neglected and hungry felines - I was propagating an "accepted" metaphor that equates cat food with promiscuous women. So what kind of devious misogynistic byzantine awfully clever mind equates a tin of Friskies with a frisky woman?

None other than Egyptian-born Sheikh Taj Din al-Hilali, Australia's most senior Muslim cleric who once said that the 9-11 attacks were "God's work against oppressors". Now, according to the good Sheikh, cat food is pretty much the same things as an unchaste profligate slatternly whorish licentious unveiled woman.

"In a Ramadan sermon in a Sydney mosque, Sheikh al-Hilali suggested that a group of Muslim men recently jailed for many years for gang rapes were not entirely to blame ... If you take out uncovered meat and place it outside on the street, or in the garden or in the park, or in the backyard without a cover, and the cats come and eat it..whose fault is it - the cats or the uncovered meat?"

Of course the gang-banging rapists cats aren't to blame. I wonder if the Sheikh knows that we women are given a special manual at birth on how to seduce men, with special appendices on keeping our lipstick fresh, fixing a run in our black fishnet stockings, and casting men into the sulfurous fires of hell for all eternity. My copy is covered in red faux-fur and is much thumbed & extensively annotated. Regrettably, my mother didn't give me the illustrated edition; I believe my brother was her favourite child.

There were women, he said, who 'sway suggestively' and wore make-up and immodest dress "and then you get a judge without mercy and gives you 65 years. But the problem, but the problem all began with who (sic)?" he said
, referring to the women victims.

Yes victims. The women's victims. Oh, the pitfalls of being a man, having to live in a world with oversexed women (such as I) who are nothing more than the devil's agent in his evil quest to accumulate good Muslim (male) souls. In fact, according to the Sheikh, we make up half of his standing army. "Onward Slutty Soldiers, marching off to war ...."

Women, he said, were 'weapons' used by Satan to control men.

My goodness but this makes it difficult to see Islam as a religion of "peace and enlightenment". Especially when you read a translation
of his speech in which he also claims that all Christians and Jews will end up" in hell. And not part-time. For eternity. They are the worst in God's creation." As an atheist and a woman (a double damnation whammy), I assume that I'll be relegated to standing at the Hell's door, holding it open for the other "people of the book".

And what happened
to the Sheikh? Needless to say, his comments didn't go unheard. Although his followers responded with a hearty round of applause as he concluded his sermon, public outcry was thunderous, and Sydney's mosque association suspended him for a whole whopping 3 months. I think parking in a handicapped spot gets you a higher sentence in most countries. He has also apologized but added that he "had only intended to protect women's honour". His apology has been accepted by the Mosque Association.

Many people - including some Muslim leaders - have called for the cleric to be dismissed from office.

Well, there's a thought. Or better yet, give him the same sentence that backwards heads-up-their-asses fundamentalists would give to a "wanton woman": stone him. No no no, I'm above this, I'm a better person in spite of my full-time tenure in hell - perhaps we could just put him on a diet of cat food for the next 6 months. That'll give him something to chew on.

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