No to gender apartheid on campus!

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The ever-excellent Harry’s Place draws attention to the lunatic attitudes being propagated by Birmingham University’s Islamic Society:

What is ISOC’s stance on gender relations?
While to the extent possible we try to be easy on people, this is one issue we are quite puritan about. The prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him said ‘every religion has a character, and the character of my religion is modesty’. ISOC is not a place for members of the opposite sex to socialise, and there is to be no free mixing in or around the prayer rooms or at ISOC events. You may ask ‘isn’t this a little harsh? After all we all attend mixed lectures, and perhaps even sit next to members of the opposite sex’. Our reply would be that in spite of this it is our duty to ensure that we make it easy for both men and women to stick to the highest standards of modesty and etiquette. In this way we hope that when they are in situations when it isn’t so easy to do so, they are able to stick to these manners and conduct themselves in the best possible way.

As someone who used to hang around Birmingham University quite a lot, can I please say that I am shocked and appalled.

In 2006 the Birmingham University Guild of Students (the student union) took action against the Christian Union because of its undemocratic practises and discrimination against non-Christians.

Why isn’t the student Islamic Society also being ostracised by BUGS for its ridiculously sexist rules? If religious nutters want to practise their idiotic beliefs that contravene the basic, decent values of mainstream society then they should not be receiving any sort of support or endorsement from the student union.

Birmingham students must take a stand against the gender apartheid being encouraged by the Islamic Society.

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