The major question this article tries to answer is, is there truly a connection between homosexuality and Satanism? The short and simple answer would be: Hell no! The fact that some Satanists indulge in homosexual-related activities does not make all homosexuals Satanists. Homosexuals are another microcosm of the world except for the sexual orientation part – yet a huge misconception about them. There are good homosexuals and bad homosexuals; there are religious homosexuals, atheist homosexuals and satanic homosexuals. A growing number of homosexuals is deeply religious and they hold their own interpretation of the chasm between their orientation and their beliefs, regardless of what other believers and/or religious scholars of that religion might say about them: They simply don’t care and they don’t seem like they are planning to anytime soon.
The recent events and reactions (public and official) over Hardrock café are just another heap to add to the stack of recurring sentiment of public ignorance intensified by the propaganda of these websites and the power of rumors. Numerous accidents have happened in the past, some are:
• An article by the notoriously famous Fact Jo website, featuring one of the earliest covers of MyKali back in 2007, claiming that a “group of homosexuals is planning to organize a conference for pederasty in Jordan” (how ridiculous is that?). In addition, the article falsely states that “homosexuals in Jordan will celebrate the International Day of Homosexuality (does that even exist?!) On the 23rd of November”. Apparently, since this turned out to be such a hoax, public sentiment was not moved much by this incident though it did stir some controversy.
• Multiple articles in local newspapers that made it to Al-Quds Al-Arabi newspaper in London after a New Year’s party that was planned in a private farm in Zayy (31 NW of Amman) was raided, saying that the police arrested six teenagers and a girl “copying” Satanists and using “weird sexual instruments”. The very interesting part of this article is a paragraph that links homosexuality with ‘atheism’ and ‘pornography’, quoting “those [homosexuals] are sons of rich people, they feel bored and they refuse to submit to society’s traditions” in a clear attempt to say there is nothing called homosexuality and whoever claims to be one must be just ‘bored’. Lack of entertainment or lack of intelligence? “It was a shock for me and my family,” one of the guys who was arrested tells My.Kali*. “even my family said if they’ve published the real story it would’ve been better! Because at least there are few openminded people who would understand homosexuality more than they would about satanists. Even my family, if they didn’t know the real story from the start they would’ve believe the media, i’m sure, and if it wasn’t labeled by the media as that, the whole thing wouldn’t have ended the way it did (jail)!”. Then why do these people were labeled satanists, when they’re not? Were they confused by something? “Maybe because I was wearing a ripped jeans with a basic black top! Maybe that’s what got them thinking! Or maybe they were afraid to say it was a bunch of gays so in front of the other Arab countries Jordan to be labeled as “clean” and “safe”. Or maybe they wanted the scandal to be a better scandal and to get more views, as the gay topic is/was over used and written about. Till now I have no clue what was the reason exactly.” But on what claims did the police made the arrest? “For an unregistered party, and the other case/claim was arresting them in suspicious circumstances. also keep in mind that weren’t at the place yet, we were just entering the house. And since when do you need a license for a house party?” (Al-Quds Al-Arabi – Al-Dustor – Saraya News)
• The most recent and important event before the Hardrock café incident is what happened in Marmara Hotel in Mecca street. That story has kindled much criticism and rejection and little sympathy, although it does not really deserve the whole fuss it caused. The private party taking place was at some point ‘raided’ by the police for some reason or another, and the aftermath was a tsunami of public discontent and a huge list of comments on online articles and news pieces talking about it, one uses very vulgar terms to describe and respond to the party, while others irrationally copied Ammon’s fabricated article which contains less than 5% of the truth. The same subject was discussed in a previous article in MyKali, and also featured on GME.
• At last in queue comes the latest event which was not related to LGBT oriented parties at all. “Jordan Halloween party attacked for being ‘gay’ and ‘satanic’” Gay Star News reported! A simple and innocent Halloween party in Hardrock café in Abdoun turned into a mass verbal and media protest against the party and Halloween itself because of social unrest and discrimination. As a post on WordPress says the entire reason for what happened in a simple sentence “[those] who celebrate it here in this city are basically the financially comfortable people.” And so the allegations of Satanism started based on sightings of what happened inside the party, because the people inside were wearing costumes and different styles of make-up other than the conventional ones, they were directly considered Satanists. According to the same article, the media propagandist warfare started at 9:30 before the party itself started, proclaiming that there is a huge party for “gays and Satanists” in a venue in Abdoun without mentioning the name of the venue, and that the party was under protection of the government and the municipality, one of the sightings mentioned the article is “girls dressed as nurses, serving blood to guests as a satanic ritual”. And one can expect what the general reaction would be: a large number of guys gathered in front of Hardrock café trying to get inside for some reason, yet it is unclear if they only wanted to get inside and “see” what’s going on, or they were opposed to the party itself, because from the way they are dressed and they behave, they do not seem to follow any extreme religious ideas that allows them to attack and terrorize others (such as the Salafi doctrine) although an article onBikyamasr.com claims that there were members of the Muslim Brotherhood amongst the attackers. They looked rather like normal guys who just wanted in, and since they were in large numbers, the security personnel of the party were unable to stop them and riots started, the guys gathered in front tried to burn a part of the café which resulted in a humiliating disperse of the partiers back to their cars and the interference of the police and gendarmerie to contain the situation.
The day after, lots of articles on internet based tabloids appeared, causing a public reaction that lasted for a couple of days before the entire subject was forgotten. Funny thing is, although this party was not the only Halloween party going on, but there was such focus on it for a weird reason, apparently those internet tabloids just wanted any piece of info to grab onto and exploit to highest extent. To exploit the social unrest and the state of classism inflicted by the party further, the Muslim Brotherhood used the standard cliché of morality, religion, poverty, hunger, deprivation and ‘responsibility’ to attack the party and rally its media machine against it, blaming the government for the state of ‘decay of morality’ Jordan has gotten into.
In the end, there is not much to say. The fact that those websites exist is the main contributor to the whole stereotype of linking homosexuality to Satanism in particular and to other qualities in general. And as long as they serve their message in the way they do, there is no solution in sight but to use media as a counter weapon too; asserting the fact that in order to have an open minded, unbiased and accepting society, the media scene itself should be able to reflect these essential qualities of journalism, but if not, then we can expect more of the Marmara-Hardrock café affair to occur… and here comes New Years!