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"Violent Homophobia" Investigated

Sep 07 2006 20:41
The Dark Knight
An investigation is underway after comments described as "violently homophobic" were posted by two users of the ISoc forum.
A post by 'Al Chemist'

On Sunday evening the Sabbatical Officers were pointed to a thread on the Islamic Society discussion forum, containing openly homophobic comments posted by two contributors.

The Union is investigating the matter and has asked ISoc to reveal the identities of the posters. They have also been told to remove the comments by the end of the week. ICU President John Collins gave the followings statement to Live!:

"We are working with ISoc to identify the people who posted these comments and ensure their discussion forum is better moderated in future, but would like to make it clear that we do not hold ISoc responsible for the comments of these individuals."

Within a few hours comments by one of the contributors had been edited to remove the more offensive parts.

The comments, posted in January this year, were in response to the screening of a documentary on Channel 4 titled "Gay Muslims", covering the experiences of five gay and lesbian muslims in the UK.

One of the first responses in the thread is from a user called 'Haji', whose solution to Muslims considering themselves gay is to "batter them". This contributor signed himself off as 'Sagir (Haji) Hassam' in a later post on the discussion forum. A candidate by the name of Sagir (Haji) Hassam was disqualified from last year's Union Council elections for using mailing lists to campaign. At the time these posts were made, Hassam was both Publicity Officer for ISoc and the Vice President of the IC Finance Society. After initial publication of this article, Mr Hassam sent Live! a statement which has been added at the end.

Another contributor, posting as 'Al Chemist', also takes issue with the subject of the documentary, describing the content as "disgusting", continuing "them and a whole load of other 'Muslims' are on my hitlist!"

The language of these contributors calmed down after the majority of others users of the forum expressed opposition to their extreme views.

The Union considers this to be a very serious matter, in breach of several College and Union regulations and potentially incitement to violence. Such discussions on College-hosted websites are governed by College and Union equal opportunities policies and the ICT regulations.

UPDATED:

Mr Hassam has given Live! the following statement:

"I have realised in retrospect that my individual thoughts were incorrectly communicated on this thread, and I did post further along the thread that "batter" was a much too strong word, I meant batter in terms of a verbal battering i.e. numerous dicussions, not physically hurting anyone. I would never condone unprovoked violent actions against anyone regardless of sexual orientation, race or gender.

I again want to clarify I do not and will not force my beliefs onto people and I tend not to approach them if I can't do so pleasantly."

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Discussion about “"Violent Homophobia" Investigated”

The comments below are unmoderated submissions by Live! readers. The Editor accepts no liability for their content, nor for any offence caused by them. Any complaints should be directed to the Editor.
Sep 07 2006 11:00
 

ah yes, isoc, that bastion of liberal democracy... they have so much to teach us about civilized living

*rolls eyes

Sep 07 2006 11:20
 

"The language of these contributors calmed down after the majority of others users of the forum expressed opposition to their extreme views."

All credit to that 'moderate majority' for speaking out against the violent minority view- far more important for putting those misguided few in their place than any outside intervention could ever be.

Please remember this is just isolated individuals, and not tar with the same brush the very people who spoke out against those views at the time.

(And no, I'm not an ISoc memebr myself.)

Sep 07 2006 13:35
 

so what? a couple of abusive posts on a message board by some miscreants. has rupert murdoch bought live or something? how's that news? i bet you'll find sexist/homophobic material on the rugby and football websites. pathetic.

Sep 07 2006 14:27
 

Do be sure to tell someone if you find posts on the rugby and football websites about "battering women" or "battering gays".

Particularly if the people involved have run clubs or tried to get on council (and been thrown out for cheating).

5. Sam   
Sep 08 2006 01:36
 

I don't give a c**p about religion, I don't give a c**p about sexuality.

However,

The CSA and CU sites have in the past linked to information on "Alpha" courses. Alpha takes a hard-line Leviticus 18 view on homosexuality, calling it an "abomination" (full discussion)

As an agnostic, I don't see how expressing a hard-line Muslim religious view that homosexuality is wrong differs from expressing a hard-line Christian or Jewish opinion.

Personally, I'd say that the Torah/Bible saying this is a huge moral sin for which you'll eventually burn in Hell for is just as violent as saying they need "battering".

Religion has been the cause of more deaths throughout the ages than anything else - lets all agree that it's all a load of unprovable bollocks that we don't need and get on with living our lives eh?

Sep 08 2006 10:44
 

http://www.union.ic.ac.uk/scc/islamic/forum/viewtopic.php?p=8454&highlight=batter#8454

Haji admitting to wanting to "batter" homosexuals in an entirely different thread.

Sep 08 2006 12:52
 

Just for the record, those behind the "Alpha" course make a distinction between homosexual *orientation* and homosexual *practice*. They believe that the bible speaks clearly against homosexual *practice*, but equally they recognise the church's responsibility to welcome and engage every member of society, whatever their background or orientation. Alpha certainly does not advocate "battering" homosexuals (whether practicing or not) but rather points us to the example of Jesus whose response is not to condemn but to love. See John 8:2-11

Sep 08 2006 19:20
 

Hold up there. You can proclaim to be homosexual, and the Christian Church will accept you (or whatever denomination Alpha comes under), but if you perform homosexual acts, then you're no longer accepted?

That's the strangest distinction I've come across. Being gay would tend to imply that you would have same-sex sexual partners. Is the Alpha course's solution to homosexual Christians to advocate abstinence?

Sep 08 2006 21:08
 

I don't want to misrepresent anybody so just a little background. Alpha is a basic introduction to Christianity and does not include significant teaching on sexuality. It has been adopted by every major Christian denomination. However, it originates from Holy Trinity Brompton (HTB), which is firmly rooted in the evangelical wing of the Church of England. Thus when talking of the stance of "Alpha" we are largely talking about the stance of HTB, rather than of every person or denomination associated with running an Alpha course.

Even if one concurs with the branches of Christianity that condemn homosexual practice as a sin, that does not mean that a person in a practicing homosexual relationship is no longer accepted. The Bible is clear that we all fall short - there are plenty of other sins to choose from!! If sin meant we were to be rejected by the church I can assure you that there'd be no-one left in it. The sin (whether homosexual practice or whatever) is not condoned but the person is welcomed. In the passage I quoted above, Jesus refuses to condemn the woman caught in adultery, but encourages her "Go now and leave your life of sin". Sadly just as our Muslim friends are all wrongly tarred with the brush of extremism, we in the Christian church are sadly badly misrepresented by a vocal (but tiny) minority who ostracise homosexuals.

But yes, you're right - abstinence would be the course of action encouraged to homosexual Christians by HTB and other like-minded churches. I'm not sure I agree with your assertion that "Being gay would tend to imply that you would have same-sex sexual partners". Many heterosexual people go through life (whether or not by choice) without sexual partners. Whatever our sexual orientation, we all have the choice to say no.

10. Haji   
Sep 09 2006 00:51
 

Ladies and Gents,

Firstly, I would like to point out Live! failed to include my entire statement that I gave to them, and just chose the parts they wanted. So I shall firstly start with that before I begin to defend myself:

Dear Live!,

I have realised in retrospect that my individual thoughts were incorrectly communicated on this thread, and I did post further along the thread that "batter" was a much too strong word, I meant batter in terms of a verbal battering i.e. numersous dicussions, not physicall hurting anyone. I would never condone unprovoked violent actions against anyone regardless of sexual orientation, race or gender.

To clarify my position, I believe everyone is entitled to his/her own opinion and I am averse to homosexuality just like many orthodox Christians and followers of other faiths including Islam. I believe it is wrong to practice homosexuality so I try to converse with homosexuals to understand why they think they are gay. There has been much research into it, and childhood experiences are often a major factor, as you can see from my quote the Imperialites I've encountered believe they are "gay from the soul" and often treat heterosexuals, like myself, who attempt at a discussion with them disrespectfully, much like the guy outside the Mormon church opposite Tanaka who sets up camp there weekly and proceeds to insult the Mormon church-goers.

I again want to clarify I do not and will not force my beliefs onto people and I tend not to approach them if I can't do so pleasantly.

Kindest Regards,

Sagir Hassam

PS. Could I also ask about the nature of this investigation and who is running it and for what purpose, they can simply ask me if they have any questions.

  • ---

Secondly, the article above says: "After initial publication of this article, Mr Hassam sent Live! a statement which has been added at the end.".

This is a complete lie, Live! approached me to make a statement before the article was published. This can be proved by timestamp of the email and the publishing time of the article.

The article also says: "Within a few hours comments by one of the contributors had been edited to remove the more offensive parts." If they look carefully, they will realise nothing was removed, I merely added the word verbally in brackets to try to help communicate my thoughts.

And "andy sykes" says I admitted "to wanting to "batter" homosexuals in an entirely different thread." I merely stated batter in the same context as before, non-violently but this was miscommunicated as I mentioned in the full statement I gave to Live!

Ok...so far I haven't said anything, except expose the fact that Live! aren't telling you everything and possibly twisting the story a little, but thats what gets hits right? I'll keep it short, I am anti-homosexual, but against the concept of homosexuality rather than homosexual people, doing a Computing Eng degree and Maths, Physics and Computing at A-Level, leaves me with pretty poor writing skills, I don't think I've written prose anywhere else except that forum!

I'm not some serially violent person who "batters" people, this is far from the truth, I am a fairly outgoing guy who is involved with college activities from society work to being a year representative to my department which could possibly have the most gay people in it!

I'm a person who tends to engage people and discuss stuff (hence my work in clubs and societies) pleasantly if I can, otherwise I leave someone to their own devices. I'm sorry that this has come out this way.

To the main question, as I said in the article above, I'm against unprovoked violence, "batter" was just a miscommunication on my part and the election thing mentioned by Live! was used just to try and dirty my name to make it look like I would be violent against homosexuals because I'm allegedly a cheater. I was disqualified from elections for indirectly breaking rules that I did not know about, I did not break any rules myself, but I was responsible for those who broke the rules even though they did it without my permission.

To continue the current discussion, I have heard Marcus' opinion before, a good Jewish friend of mine said that homosexuals are accepted in Judaism as long as they are celibate and do not practice. This is what I mentioned as people who believe "they are gay from the soul", whereas I think homosexuality is merely a lifestyle choice, after all...God made Adam and Eve...not Adam and Steve!

11. Editor   
Sep 09 2006 09:51
 

To clarify:

* Mr Hassam was contacted before the article was originally published

* Later that evening (approximately 19:29 on the 6th) the comment was removed completely

* Between 23:00 and 00:00 the comment was restored, but slightly modified to include 'verbally'.

* The original article was published the following morning.

* Around 12 hours after publication, Mr Hassam sent a response to Live! which was edited for length, as we considered the second paragraph to bring nothing extra to the argument.

* This article has been edited with the new information, hence the timestamp being updated.

We felt it was necessary to push the article back out to RSS feeds and highlight it as changed on the web, to give Mr Hassam a fair opportunity to defend himself. Allowing the timestamp to change on an edit achieves this.

Readers will note that the first post on this discussion occured 9 hours before the current time on the article.

12. Haji   
Sep 09 2006 11:05
 

Its interesting to note, I was never told their was going to be an article and my question at the bottom of my rmail was never answered.

With regards to editing comments, I decided to remove it intially then decided that wouldn't help anyone, so I just restored the original comments with the additional word.

I also would like to know what rules my miscommunicated comments broke? What happened to freedom of speech? Or does the words come under some form on inciting hatred?

Sep 09 2006 11:24
 

Start with: http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/ict/registration/forms/registrationtermsandconditions

"2.3 Not display, store or transmit images or text which could be considered offensive e.g. material of a sexual, pornographic, pedophilic, sexist, racist, libelous, threatening, defamatory, of a terrorist nature or likely to bring the College into disrepute."

From the ICT terms and conditions.

ICU and the college are against discrimination so your (mis)communication could be seen as discrimination - as an elected officer and potential member of union council this would be particularly bad and is probably why this has become a news story.

All of the evidence and your response is here so people can make up their own mind.

Personally, I found the 'Al Chemist' posts to be worse and yours to be a stupid hamfisted attempt at communication...

14. Haji   
Sep 09 2006 17:56
 

equality,

I don't think I broke the rules you stated because they are for the use of College facilities (those rules say: "IT facilities, must be for the purpose of University research, teaching, coursework, associated administration or other authorised use. No 'private/commercial' work is permitted without prior authorization." which means all society-related pages are out), we are talking about the use of the union's societies website.

I assume the Union somewhere has a page governing the use of webspace in the form of society pages. I don't think I actually said I want to (verbally) "batter" homosexuals I merely proposed it as a way of making them see my point of view.

Sep 09 2006 18:35
 

The Union's webserver can still be seen as College facilities. Furthermore your messages were posted from College machines, or machines on the Halls network - most definitely College IT facilities.

You also breached the Union's Equal Opportunities policy:

http://www.union.ic.ac.uk/resource/governance/equalopps.html#d

Sep 09 2006 18:37
 

The union web pages are hosted on the college connection. The union website and their societies pages ARE College facilities.

I don't believe the union has a page of rules itself, as it is considered part of the union with regards to ICT facilities.

17. Haji   
Sep 10 2006 09:49
 

I think my miscommunication did break the Equal Oppurtunity rules, again I would like to apologise about the way these comments have been voiced, it was a simple miscommunication.

By the way, I wouldn't have used the college's ICT facilities for the forum, I almost always checked it at my flat in NW London, and I was hardly at Uni in the final year of my Computing degree due to projects.

Sep 10 2006 14:59
 

Wiggle wiggle wiggle!

Haji needs to get out of this pickle!

Sep 10 2006 21:49
 

Does anyone actually believe Haji's disingenuous claim that his use of the word 'batter' was not supposed to have a violent connotations? I'd be very concerned if the Union accepts this. No one in the right mind not meaning to incite violence would use the word 'batter', they would opt for a word that one does not instantly associate with violence. I've never heard of anyone being 'verbally battered'. So Haji, don't insult our intelligence anymore with your ridiculous claims.

If the Quran is anything to go by, this is what all Muslims would actually like to do anyway (even if they're not all silly enough to come out and say it) since the Shariah prescribes stoning to death for acts of homosexuality and I don't think one can be a Muslim without subscribing to the Quran in it's unedited entirety. If any Muslims want to discount that the Shariah says this, please do and tell me what it does say about what should be done to practising homosexuals. I believe it is battering with stones (and not merely words, I'm afraid).

Sep 10 2006 22:42
 

Mr libertian I think you will find Islamic law can only be upheld in an Islamic state such as Iran, so muslims in this country cannot and do not batter homosexuals as far as I know, are there reports to the contrary?

I personally did some research into Haji's claim and it appears he uses the word batter in different contexts on the forum; claiming to batter another forum user by posting a reply to the user's message i.e. a written battering, it may well be feasible that he was talking about a "verbal" battering.

And after much more research the Quran actually does not prescribe a punishment for homosexuals, it does describe the punishment of God to the commmunity of the Prophet Lot. I think its also important to note that the original thread on the forum is about gay muslims, do muslims not have the right to judge their own people? Gay catholic priests are "named and shamed" (many with child molestation charges!) all the time.

Is there any proof Haji actively go outs and beats practicising homsexuals up? By his posts on the forum he doesn't seem to be a a stric Muslim, alot of them talk about sports and topics about love and marriage!

Shariah has many different interpretations again and there are lots of different views, but again they can only be upheld in an Islami state, so no gay muslim will be stoned in this country for some time to come...!

PS. I think you spelt your name wrong!

21. Ryan   
Sep 11 2006 00:29
 

As President of I.Q., Imperial's LGBT (or homosexual if you like) society, I feel obliged to say something here.

I beleive everyone has the right to free speach and if someone says "I think homosexuality is wrong and a grave sin" then I'm not the least bit bothered. That's what they beleive and all the best to them. However, what I can't stand is threatening and violent language aimed at any minority, especially if it's one I'm part of. I have a duty as President to provide a safe and fun environment for all the gay people at Imperial and I would not be doing this if I allowed any such violently homophobic comments to go without challenge.

I'm afraid I just don't beleive Haji's line that he meant verbal battering. Anyone with the slightest grasp on English can see that the phrase 'The answer's simple, batter them' (which is essentially what was said originally) is an angry, bitter and violent one and does not imply that this battering is to be verbal in any way. I can't see how 'batter' could have a non-violent meaning except perhaps on a cookery site.

The comments are offensive and probably do break College and Union codes. I wouldn't for a moment find acceptable someone saying that we should batter Muslims or women or people of a different race. Why then should it be acceptable to condone violence against gay people.

Sep 11 2006 01:07
 

Yeah isn't it great we don't live in a country where you're hung for being gay, like say...Iran.

Indeed, liberterian did spell his name wrong but libertian isn't right either. Looking in a dictionary tells me it's actually libertarian and it also tells me

Batter: to deal heavy, repeated blows; pound steadily

I can imagine a conversation with Haji being quite painful if this is his delivery style.

Law of Land I just love how you deliver your bigotry. So expertly done. The not-so-subtle inuendo that gay people are pedophiles, marvellous. The piece de resistance however has to be "so no gay muslim will be stoned in this country for some time to come...!". Geez, don't you look forward to that day? Muslim or no, no one should have to put up with such homophobia!

Sep 11 2006 16:27
 

"The not-so-subtle inuendo..."

Oi 'get a dictionary'. It's INNUENDO and you've just shot yourself in the face.

Sep 11 2006 16:37
 

Ack, destroyed by a 'n'.

The moral of this story is never be a pedant not matter how tempting, it'll all end in tears.

Sep 11 2006 17:25
 

indeed. you can have your face back.

Sep 11 2006 19:20
 

Haji, if you'd actually bothered to hover over my name, or pay attention to the election of your sabbaticals, you'd see I'm the Felix editor, and not really given to making wild and baseless accusations (not yet, at least).

My personal opinion (which is not that endorsed by Felix in any way, shape or form, <insert legalese here>) is that you've been caught out. The context, as Ryan said above, was telling. A short, brutal statement, using the word "batter". The very fact that you admit to being, at least in my reading of it, homophobic (hating the concept of homosexuality) is enough to make me think you were serious.

You were not misquoted, there was no miscommunication, and your attempt to rescue the situation by adding a single word that may reduce your chances of disciplinary action by the College smacks of desperation.

I personally don't care one iota if you hate homosexuals; you can sit in your house and say whatever you want, but you really should have known better than to post your opinions on a publicly available message board which is associated to the institution at which you are studying.

@Marcus: thank you for the rather lovely write-up of the Alpha course and explaining the Church's position on homosexuality. You make an excellent point about the vocal homophobic minority.

The thing that differs between Islam and Christianity, in my mind, is that Islam is very much a "take it or leave it", fully packaged religion (probably due to its comparative modernity compared to the Abrahamic religions), whereas Christianity is far more of a "take what you want and leave the rest", leaving room for active homosexual Christians.

Anyway. Back on topic, people.

27. Haji   
Sep 11 2006 20:22
 

It seems I have alot of doubters...if we look at the what Andy Sykes pointed out, which I admitted "to wanting to "batter" homosexuals in an entirely different thread" (http://www.union.ic.ac.uk/scc/islamic/forum/viewtopic.php?t=822&postdays=0&postorder=asc&highlight=batter&start=15), if we look

at that thread where I was talking about Big Brother on which there was an openly gay muslim who called himself the "wacky paki puff" or Shabaz for short! Another member of the forum said to put a convicted killer in the house to teach them a lesson....I said....

"I hope that was a joke, and you are not conducing violent behaviour and showing prejudice to those who do not know better."

Now if I really wanted to physically batter gay muslims (or gay people in general) would I have said the above? or backed the idea of using a convicted murdered to teach BB contestants a lesson.

Please lets use our common sense here. "Batter" can be used in many different contexts you just may not have heard of them, its slang just like in the 90s we used to say "Wicked" for something good although literally it means something bad. I'm not from London hence I use a different patois of slang which you may have not heard. Things such as, "That car is sick" which means its "heavy" or in normal English its good. I also stay thats "Wack", which means its bad, and bad means bad.

Please don't hold my vocabulary against me...the proof is there ladies and gents...

28. Haji   
Sep 11 2006 20:35
 

Andy,

My accusation against you was that you implied I only replied to Live! after the article was published, I had no idea there was an article to be published or any details of any investigation, no College or Union officials have contacted me yet to this date.

And thanks for pointing out the other thread which contained me saying:

"I hope that was a joke, and you are not conducing violent behaviour and showing prejudice to those who do not know better."

http://www.union.ic.ac.uk/scc/islamic/forum/viewtopic.php?t=822&postdays=0&postorder=asc&highlight=batter&start=15

You should have used your journalistic skills and read the entire thread instead of picking and choosing post. I'm sure the people here can read the entire thread (only two pages) and make their own mind up, instead of the spin you threw on it.

29. Editor   
Sep 11 2006 20:43
 

Andy is Felix Editor, not Live! Editor. As has already been stated, you did only reply after the article had been published, 24 hours after you first edited your post (which I presume was a result of the email you received from Live!, signed off "Live! - the student news website of Imperial College").

30. Haji   
Sep 11 2006 20:48
 

With regards to Islam's non-modern approach, Islam doesn't just change its rules over time as people change their behaviour. Yes, it can be interpreted over today's situations such as the use of alcohol in many medicines which is allowed, but alcohol is banned in all other situations unless it is the only thing that may keep you alive, other re-interpretations of Islam govern such things as GM foods, organ transplants, travel etc.

So to relate to the topic, yes..homosexuality is much more common and public than before but Islam doesn't bend around the people, Islam is clear as I mentioned on the forum, a Muslim and a homosexual are mutually exclusive traits, if they were judged by the Shariah in an Islamic country then there would be a verdict of guilty if the required proofs are met, but this does not mean stoning always happens its up to the judge and the ruling. But Muslims also believe that God is infinitely merciful, and if His mercy was split into 100 parts, 1 part was used to create this world and all the good in it, the remaining 99 parts will be used to judge humanity of the Day of Judgment. To re-iterate someone may say all non-Muslims may go to hell because they rejected Islam, we could say such people like Mothere Theresa or the Pope are going to hell or some devout Christian on an Island somewhere who never heard of Islam is going to hell, a Shariah court may come to this verdict, but God is the Greatest of Judge, the Greatest of Helpers, Most Beneficient the Most Merciful.

There is beauty of softness in Islam its just hard to see from the outside, there is even a spiritual side to Islam likened to that of Buddism or possibly Kaballa (Jewish Mysticism), Islam is an open religion despite some laws which may look harsh for someone who grew up in the west. If you go to Muslim countries like Malaysia or Indonesia or even countries with minority muslims such as South Africa (where I was this summer!), the women in general don't feel opressed, they can do as they please, they don't have to cover up, but they choose to. Anyways, I've rambled enough, I just want people to not judge a religion on some of its followers instead on the true principles. Another thing to mention a stronger Muslim than myself would not have posted such things, even a verbal battering is not the approach Islam teaches, the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was tortured, beaten and insulted but never fought back, only in battle of soldiers never against civilians.

31. Haji   
Sep 11 2006 20:51
 

Andy and Ashley, apologies for the mix-up.

I may have got a little angry as to how the article was portrayed I hope with the above I have cleared things up a little.

Sep 11 2006 20:53
 

This is probably the most informative and sensible discussion on live for years...

33. Random   
Sep 11 2006 20:59
 

I would assume that people like Haji etc. would admit to tolerating homophobia (here I'm not refering to violence, just homophobia, that is prejudice against (fear or dislike of) homosexuality), and most probably they would even condone it.

Yet, I imagine that you do not condone, in fact, I imagine that you vivaciously condemn Islamophobia, such as perhaps those cartoons in the press a few months ago? You cannot have your cake and eat it. You can't condemn mindless Islamophobia and at the same time promote mindless homophobia (again, I'm not talking about violence here) without looking like a stupid hypocrite.

Whether or not you agree that countries like Iran implement true Islamic versions of the Shariah, you must recognise that your unjustified intolerance and hatred of homosexuality is the sort of thing which supports and fuels the following sorts of crimes against humanity:

http://direland.typepad.com/direland/2005/07/iran_executes_2.html [warning: contains graphic pictures of two boys being hung in public for being gay]

Perhaps you are not there putting the ropes around their necks, but as long as ignorance prevails in western democracies, it has no chance of being eliminated in countries like Iran.

Sep 12 2006 00:33
 
Sep 12 2006 07:32
 

"The unlawful detention of "enemy combatants" at the US Naval Base at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba has now entered its fifth year. Hundreds of people of around 35 different nationalities remain held in effect in a legal black hole, many without access to any court, legal counsel or family visits.

Many of these detainees allege they have been subjected to torture or other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment. Three detainees have died at the camp, after apparently comitting suicide. Others have gone on prolonged hunger strikes, being kept alive only through painful force feeding measures.

Guantánamo Bay has become a symbol of injustice and abuse in the US administration?s "war on terror".

It must be closed down. "

Amnesty International

http://web.amnesty.org/pages/guantanamobay-index-eng

Me:

The U.S. invaded Iraq because of the Human Right's violations Saddam Hussain had broken, oh yeh and the non-existent WMDs, yet in their own backyard they are breaking Geneva conventions left right and centre.

Some facts....

1592 - days that Guantanomo has been open

759 - number of detainees to date

13 - age of the youngest person detained

0 - number of convictions...!

36. Random   
Sep 12 2006 08:05
 

What's this got to do with it? Try and keep on-topic! Who said anything about liking or supporting the US? Comparing them to Iran (if that is what you are trying to do - you don't actually seem to make a point related to this discussion) is utterly stupid.

Sep 12 2006 16:47
 

""Batter" can be used in many different contexts you just may not have heard of them, its slang just like in the 90s we used to say "Wicked" for something good although literally it means something bad."

"I use a different patois of slang which you may have not heard."

So perhaps, Haji, when you said you wanted to 'batter' homosexuals you in fact meant that you wanted to do them up the bum??

Utter tripe, you're a homophobic backwards thinking idiot - and I hope that the College and the Union punish you to the maximum extent of their jurisdiction.

Sep 12 2006 17:21
 

There might be a slight problem in taking disciplinary action in this case. Judging by his online trail, he has graduated from College and is now working for UBS as a "tech guy", I believe. So unless I am mistaken, the "studious, confident and eccentric student. With a penchant for great humour" (according to his wikipedia profile http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Haji_H ) is beyond the reach of the union now.

39. Lexy   
Sep 12 2006 17:27
 

Wow, who cares. You were actually sad enough to do a google search on him.

40. Haji   
Sep 12 2006 22:02
 

It just goes to show, people like "who cares" who hide behind fake names are the real cowards, everyone knows that Wiki pages are editable by anyone, your just not popular enough!

And "tis true" the page was edited 19:02, 12 September 2006 (it takes time to propogate the change, Wiki is quite big) by a person with the IP address of 88.107.31.134 , maybe I can find a hacker and repay the favour by editing something about him or belonging to him!!!

41. Haji   
Sep 12 2006 22:08
 

The point is "who cares" no is trying to insult me as he realises it was a miscommunication and so will random #2, my simple proof is a day later after I posted my alleged battering comments, I repeat I posted the following, in response to someone's suggestion that a convicted murdered would teach the members of the Big Brother house, and specifically a gay muslim, a lesson:

"I hope that was a joke, and you are not conducing violent behaviour and showing prejudice to those who do not know better."

No the words of a person who wants to "batter" homosexuals, take it as you like.

And correct, I am no longer an Imperial College student.

Lexy, well said.

42. haha   
Sep 12 2006 23:12
 

Good riddance!

43. Haji   
Sep 13 2006 07:00
 

I removed the Wiki page.

44. Editor   
Sep 13 2006 08:38
 

A couple of posts have been removed because they were unfair and potentially libellous (related to the defaced wiki page mentioned above).

45. Seb   
Sep 13 2006 12:01
 

Well, with regard to Alpha course and moderate interpretations of Christianity, I think the point is that while they may condemn homosexuality as a Sin, it isn't actually up to other Christians to punish Sins. It's between you and God isn't it?

At least that is what I understood.

Hence the distinction between a crime and a sin. Frankly, I have an enormous problem with the whole concept of Sin.

Sep 13 2006 18:21
 

"Frankly, I have an enormous problem with the whole concept of Sin."

You and me both, sir. Also, Betrand Russell.

Sep 13 2006 19:42
 

This is saying something (from the guy who laid out the 'legal' basis for the Iraq War)...

"Guantánamo Bay is a "shocking affront to the principles of democracy" and a violation of the rule of law, the lord chancellor, Lord Falconer, said today."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/guantanamo/story/0,,1871628,00.html

Sep 13 2006 19:47
 

While we're quoting Russell:

"There can be little doubt of the superiority of one race to another.... It seems on the whole fair to regard negroes as on the average inferior to white men, although for work in the tropics they are indispensable"

  • - Bertrand Russell
Sep 13 2006 19:53
 

...thats not doing Russell's legacy much justice, but he still said it. Proves he can be wrong about Sin as well.

50. Seb   
Sep 14 2006 11:35
 

Never got around to reading Russell. <shocking admission>

yes right:

Ah, but the problem with Sin is that I reckon God can be "wrong" about what constitutes something that is morally wrong. I.e. some Sins, such as homosexuality, would seem to me to be the business of two consenting adults and nobody else, and frankly not rightly the business of any third party, even if that third party happened to be creator of all things and omnipotent. That makes Him, to my mind, some sort of cosmic tyrant ruling by arbitrary decree. There are better ways of constructing an ethical and moral framework than looking to bronze age religious writings.

Sep 14 2006 13:04
 

if you can think of a better way to construct a moral framworks than those based on bronze-age writings then that makes you the next prophet. good luck.

Sep 14 2006 13:16
 

Seb - without being flippant: all im saying is that you can't write off ideas like Sin, unless there's something to replace it with. There still isn't. Having a being that is watching every move helps a lot of people live their lives happily.

Sep 14 2006 13:19
 

Unless that "being" happens to be the government, when most people are very opposed to having their privacy invaded.

People are not happy with any old "being" watching them - just the non-flawed benevolent variety.

54. Haji   
Sep 14 2006 23:12
 

Seb, I think its more important when talking about such things like "sin", to think why we are here. If we agree that we were created by an all powerful, supreme God, then it was for some purpose we were created, not just for His amusement. We, also believe that God is Just, and he rewards those who do "good" and punishes those who do "bad", who lays out what good or bad is, well as he created the world he creates the rules by which we can live. But as God is just he gives us the chance to choose (free will) and although He may know the outcome of a free-will choice much like He knows the outcome of rolling a dice, he lets us "roll it" so to speak.

Our viewpoint on life is not the same as God's so we see things different, so whereas a gay relationship may seem a perfectly normal and sane thing to do, if two adults consent, its still God's law that we're following. If you take that leap of faith, that you will be judged with justice then I think you can start to understand God's great mercy.

With regards to being watched God "records" it all down and keeps it safe where no one can see it, only you and God know about it, and only you can explain whats on it. The "government" tend to record stuff, distribute, analyse and use their "recordings" in any purpose they seem fit.

55. Albert   
Sep 15 2006 10:01
 

Haji,

"...much like He knows the outcome of rolling a dice (sic)..."

1. He would surely know that one may roll a die, or roll some dice.

2. God does not play dice.

A. Einstein

56. sea   
Sep 16 2006 15:19
 

It's not surprising that live! would write such a warped biased article. It shows just how securely they have their fingers on the pulse (cough*NOT*cough).

57. vf   
Sep 16 2006 16:36
 

there is no pulse ... a quick survey of college media:

www.icradio.com (down)

www.stoictv.com (broken, nothing since april)

felix effectively shuts over the summer

just some random twitches from live...

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