On Friday, Heat Street reported that Jonathan Brown, an Islamic studies professor at Georgetown University, is teaching his students that non-consentual sex and slavery is justifiable under Islamic teachings.
According to Heat Street:
Brown himself uploaded the lecture to YouTube.
According to Lee, Brown’s lecture was supposed to revolve around slavery in Islam, but the lecturer moved its focus to criticize the United States, United Kingdom and China. Brown described slavery in these non-Muslim societies as brutal, which they were, but lauded the historically inhumane practice in Arab lands and Turkey.
“This is the first in three pieces on the question of Islam and slavery,” Brown said in the YouTube description. “It demonstrates that the very term ‘slavery’ is so ambiguous as to be functionally useless for the purposes of discussing extreme domination and exploitation across history. It should be conditions of extreme exploitation that are focused on, not shifting terms. The second essay will lay out the understanding of slavery in the Shariah and Islamic civilization. The final part will examine the abolition of slavery in Islam.”
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Heat Street added:
The Islamic Studies professor said that in Muslim societies, “slavery wasn’t racialized,” unlike the United States. Lee points out that this is untrue, given that in the Arab world, black people are referred to as “abeed,” the Arab word for “slave.”
Brown stated that slaves were “protected by Sharia,” omitting the various atrocities committed by slave-owners. Girls and women were forced into the sex trade and their male counterparts were often castrated.
“In general you don’t find the brutality that you see in American slavery,” said Brown, who described the historically common practice as “investments” and “walking venture properties” for slave-owners.
“It’s not immoral for one human to own another human,” Brown further said, comparing it to marriage. “I don’t think it’s morally evil to own somebody because we own lots of people all around us and we’re owned by people,” he added.
“Consent isn’t necessary for lawful sex,” he told a female attendee who asked about the permissibility of sex with slaves.
“I thought the Muslim community was done with this dishonest North Korean style of propaganda,” Lee said. “Obviously not.”
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