Not all views are equal

Recently, NUS associate professor Syed Muhd Khairudin Aljunied made a number of terrible posts on Facebook condemning 'liberal' Islam. He also referred to homosexuality as a disease that can be corrected through religious classes and counseling.

After the inevitable controversy, the posts were taken down. The non-apology that followed lamented "the poor judgement in the tone and choice of words" but did not point out that the professor was wrong. Then there were a couple of people who came out saying the university should have protected the professor's right to express his views.

But not all views are equal. Incidentally, this is why comments on the internet are damnably difficult. The issue here is not that professor Aljunied called homosexuality a cancer. He has a right to hate, and it may be futile to try and change his views.

In this episode of Love & Radio, Darryl Davis talks about the right to hate, but not to hurt. The problem with these remarks is their potential to hurt. There is ample evidence that homosexuality is a natural variation in human sexuality. Furthermore and perhaps most important here, 'therapies' to change sexual orientation lack medical justification and can seriously harm the health of these individuals.

The problem is not the tone and choice of words. It is willful misrepresentation. The professor simply refused to get his head out of the sand.

Ramkumar Shankar