This is just a really nice story, for two reasons. The first reason is that it’s just a really nice story, of an imam in DC named Daayiee Abdullah, who happens to be gay himself, who is at the vanguard of the slowly burgeoning, but very real, movement of progressive Muslims in this country:
But when the openly gay imam takes the stage, he stuns even this audience.
“I think we’re at the start of a movement: a more inclusive Islam in America,” says Abdullah, who runs Washington’s Light of Reform mosque and is thought to be the only publicly gay Muslim leader in the Western Hemisphere.
“So if you have any same-sex marriages,” he says with a soft smile and a shrug, “I’m available.”
Some young Muslims in attendance mumble, “Wow!” and “Seriously?”
As more states legalize same-sex marriage, it’s easy to forget that segments of society, particularly in immigrant communities, regard homosexuality as a potentially deadly secret — one rarely revealed to relatives in places like Sudan or Saudi Arabia, where being gay can be punishable by death.
The article tells of the support and help Abdullah has been able to give gay Muslims, specifically a DC couple who met in the Middle East. One is Muslim, the other is a Quaker, and they’ve been able to successfully build a life without the Muslim half of the couple feeling compelled to leave his faith simply because he’s gay.
The second reason this story is wonderful is explained by Jeff at Wonkette:
The freak-out from Michele Bachmann, Sean Hannity, Bryan Fischer, et al. when they find out there is a Muslim cleric — a Sharia expert even! — gay marrying people will be spectacular.
Unless you happen to be gay and Muslim, you probably just think: Oh, this Daayiee Abdullah sounds like a nice Imam and go about your business. But for paranoid and insane wingnuts, this news is literally all their most horrible fantasies coming true. When they find out, the AOL email forwards will fly (ahem) fast and furious about impending Sharia-enforced gay Muslim marriages. Flag-desecrating clothing will be purchased at the Dressbarn or some such place. Ghost Breitbart will spin in his grave. Ammunition sales will increase. Heads will explode. The heads that don’t explode will, with every Imam or NBA all-star being totally cool with gay people, hopefully retreat deeper into their exurban bunkers and Idaho compounds … far away from decent, civilized people.
Yeah, about that culture war thing. The good guys are winning. And that’s very nice.
It is very nice.