Iain Dale, a presenter on London’s LBC radio station, was left “disgusted” on Wednesday by an anti-gay rant from a Muslim caller.
To help promote acceptance between the LGBTQ and Muslim communities, activist Sohail Ahmed mounted a campaign stall outside the Whitechapel station in London; a project in collaboration with The Peter Tatchell Foundation, which seeks to raise awareness of human rights in the UK and worldwide.
When a Muslim woman — “Zainab from East London” — called the radio station, her incendiary comments left Iain reeling: she compared homosexuality to pedophilia and claimed that homosexuality should be punishable by death.
“If people want to be gay,” she said, “go ahead and be gay, don’t get my religion involved in it and try and twist my religion and say ‘yeah we’re Muslim and gay’, just say you’re gay, why do you have you say you’re Muslim and gay?”
Responding to questions as to why gay people shouldn’t and couldn’t also be Muslim, she responded, “If they had religious views that were sincere, they wouldn’t be gay, because they would know it’s an abomination.”
Iain decided to ask her what she thought about ISIS, who throw gay men (and men assumed to be gay) off buildings to their death.
Her answer? “My religion is very clear what happens to gay people … I believe the Quran is the word of god and it hasn’t been changed like The Bible.”
At that point, Iain abruptly (and wisely) ended the conversation, leading Sohail to say, “I’m very ambivalent when I hear these discussions… because just a few years ago, I would have agreed with everything that young lady said. Even though I’m gay myself, I held those exact same views. It may sound strange but I understand where she’s coming from. Unfortunately, she’s still wrong.”
Listen to the segment below: