Western University in London, Ontario, is under fire from Muslim groups for a poster it shared on the school’s Instragram account portraying two women in Islamic veils about to kiss. This came as part of yet another diversity day.
The school yanked the poster just hours after it was first displayed due to backlash from local Muslims. Opiyo Oloya, associate vice president for equity diversity and inclusion at Western, acknowledged in a statement that some Muslims were “upset.”
Oloya said the school is committed to strident support for people in the “2SLGBTQ+ community.”
Social media was inundated with posts last week celebrating “International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia.” This day is referred to by supporters as “IDAHOTB.” Seriously.
Muslim community members slammed the image as “inappropriate” and “disrespectful” to their faith. One commentator took the university to task for what they call “an insulting mockery post to my religion.”
Imam Abd Alfatah Twakkal declared the community respects Ontario’s human rights bill that protects everyone. However, a poster that intended to be “inclusive” accomplished the exact opposite. The image, he says, used a Muslim religious symbol in a way that is “inappropriate.”
A petition to delete the post gathered over 2,000 signatures. It asserted that the effort is not against “the LGBT+ community” and acknowledged that “queer Muslims” exist. However, it called the post by Western University disrespectful to the Muslim community.
One Twitter user accused the school of being against homophobia — except in cases where ‘homophobes get upset.”
This issue has become more pervasive in Western society, and the U.K. has also had its share of pushback against wokeness. In 2019, a court banned Muslim parents from protesting outside of a primary school that taught lessons about LGBT relationships.
Counterprotesters soon appeared, and they soon claimed they were pelted by eggs. Parents ultimately pulled 600 students out of classes to protest “aggressive” teaching of homosexuality.
Western University, in the never-ending pursuit of “inclusivity,” successfully offended a significant religious minority. Officials backtracked by saying they understand the complexity of the topic within the community. As a university, wouldn’t it be refreshing to see it simply teach?