By Thaddeus M. Baklinski

February 18, 2009 ( –  The UK Guardian reports that a document known as Contest 2 reveals plans to widen the definition of “extremist” as part of the antiterrorism effort to those who hold views that clash with what the government defines as shared British values. Under the plan Muslims who believe homosexuality is sinful could be considered as “extremist,” by that fact alone.

The counterterrorism strategy, reports the Guardian, would consider people as potential terrorists if they are in favor of a pan-Islamic state involving many countries and headed by a caliphate; promote the application of Sharia Law; believe in jihad or support the armed resistance of Palestinians against Israel; and perceive homosexuality as a sin and argue that it is banned by Islam.

The acid test of this counterterrorism plan is reportedly not whether an individual promotes these views by means of violent action, but, while condemning violence, holds or even discusses these ideas.

Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, in a speech in December, had said that an effective anti-terror strategy required a mental dimension that includes challenging nonviolent extremist groups that “skirt the fringes of the law … to promote hate-filled ideologies.”

Advocates of the proposed code say that rigid interpretation of the Qur’an forms the root cause of terrorism which threatens the British people; opponents claim that this strategy would brand the vast majority of British Muslims as extremists and would lead to further alienation of British Muslims from British society.

Homosexualists in Britain are praising the proposed plan. An article in PinkNews, a homosexualist news service in the UK, quoted a 2007 survey of Muslins living in London which revealed that “less than 5% (of Muslims) thought homosexual acts are ‘acceptable,’ compared with more than 65% of the general population.”

As an example of the “extreme” Muslim belief concerning homosexuality, PinkNews quotes Sir Iqbal Sacranie, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain, who called homosexuality, “a practice that in terms of health, in terms of the moral issues that comes along in a society, it is not acceptable.”

“Each of our faiths tells us that it is harmful and, I think, if you look into the scientific evidence that has been available in terms of the forms of various illnesses and diseases that are there, surely it points out that where homosexuality is practised there is a greater concern in that area.”

The Guardian report has raised concerns for some that the movement to marginalize those who hold to traditional moral teachings on sexuality is gaining ground. In recent years U.K. law has become increasingly hostile to those who believe homosexual acts are immoral, particularly with the passage of the Sexual Orientation Regulations (SOR’s) in 2007.

The SOR’s specify that no one may “discriminate” against homosexuals in the provision of goods and services, including in religious schools, adoption and social aid agencies, hotels or rental facilities. They have been used to force Catholic adoption agencies to deviate from their specifically Catholic nature and begin adopting children to homosexual couples, against Catholic teaching. There have also been cases of couples not being allowed to adopt children merely because they hold to tradition views of sexuality.

One interesting consequence of the new counterterrorism strategy, however, is that it could see Rowan Williams, the Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury, under suspicion as an extremist for his defense of the encroachment of Islamic Sharia law into the British legal system as “unavoidable.”

The titular head of the Church of England said in an interview with BBC Radio 4’s World at One program last year that Britain had to “face up to the fact” that some accommodation for Sharia law would be implemented in Britain. He argued that since British law “accommodates” the views of Catholics and some others on issues such as abortion, Sharia should be welcomed on the grounds of tolerance for religious viewpoints. “And anyway,” he said, “certain provisions of Sharia are already recognized … So it’s not as if we’re bringing in an alien and rival system.”

Subsequently, the Sunday Times reported that the government had officially accepted the existence of Sharia law courts to officiate in Muslim civil cases. Since August 2007 the courts have dealt with more than 100 cases, ranging from Muslim divorce and inheritance cases as well as six cases of domestic violence, normally a criminal procedure under British law.

(Read the Guardian report here:

See related articles:

Archbishop of Canterbury: Because Britain Tolerates Pro-Life Activists, We Should Accept Sharia Law

Sharia Courts Operating in England Recognised by British Law


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