GALHA issues statement

The GALHA committee has issued a statement regarding comments in the Autumn 2005 issue of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist magazine.

GALHA press release, 16 October 2005

This statement can only be welcomed. On the other hand, the contact given is GALHA secretary George Broadhead, who is himself the author of an article in the same issue of G&LH magazine which includes the following passage:

“There are two terms that, increasingly, annoy us: Islamophobia and moderate Muslims. What we’d like to know is, first, what’s wrong with being fearful of Islam (there’s a lot to fear); and, second, what does a moderate Muslim do, other than excuse the real nutters by adhering to this barmy doctrine?”

Broadhead’s assertion – in the aftermath of 9/11 and 7/7 – that there are no such people as “moderate Muslims”, and that all adherents of Islam are implicated in the actions of a minority of extremists, strikes me as only marginally less poisonous than the material in G&LH magazine from which the GALHA committee now seeks to dissociate itself.

Incidentally, the GALHA website contains the following information about the author of the most blatantly Islamophobic article in G&LH magazine: “Diesel Balaam works in the television industry. He was co-author with Sukie de la Croix of the satirical column Emerald City News which appeared weekly in London’s Capital Gay from 1987 to 1992. Their book of short stories Black Confetti: New Fairy Tales for an Old Country was reviewed in the Spring 1996 issue of Gay and Lesbian Humanist.”

So GALHA members who deny any knowledge of who Balaam is are perhaps being a trifle disingenuous.