Like Uncovered Meat

When I saw this as the biggest headline on the BBC news site, I couldn’t help but slap my head in disappointment at the absurdity of such a statement. I mean at least the Pope didn’t use silly analogies. Maybe Hilali should’ve quoted someone else saying it. In any case I have to say that as a Muslim I think it’s brilliant that we have a sheikh that can compare women to meat in a world that feels Islam is already oppressive to woman. Maybe it’s more than just water that spins counter-clockwise in Australia.

Sheikh Taj el-Din al-Hilali said women who did not wear a hijab (head dress) were like “uncovered meat”. But he has now apologised for any offence caused by his comments, The Australian newspaper reports. Leading Muslim women condemned the comments and PM John Howard said the remarks were “appalling”.

“The idea that women are to blame for rapes is preposterous,” Mr Howard told reporters.

“I unreservedly apologise to any woman who is offended by my comments,” Sheikh Hilali said in a statement on Thursday. “I had only intended to protect women’s honour, something lost in The Australian presentation of my talk.”

A spokesman for Sheikh Hilali earlier said the quote had been taken out of context and referred not to sexual assault, but to sexual infidelity. The sermon was targeted against men and women who engaged in extra-marital sex and did so through alluring types of clothes, he said.

Sheikh Hilali’s critics have previously accused him of praising suicide bombers and claiming the attacks in the United States on 11 September 2001 were “God’s work against oppressors”. The cleric’s latest comments came in a sermon delivered to some 500 worshippers in Sydney last month.

“If you take out uncovered meat and place it outside… and the cats come and eat it… whose fault is it, the cats’ or the uncovered meat?” he asked.

The uncovered meat is the problem, he went on to say. “If she was in her room, in her home, in her hijab, no problem would have occurred,” he added. Sheikh Hilali also condemned women who swayed suggestively and wore make-up, implying they attracted sexual assault. “Then you get a judge without mercy… and gives you 65 years,” he added.


  • He doesn’t exactly flatter masculinity either – implying that men have the self control and moral values of street cats.

    What a debased view of humanity.

  • Isn’t that the same guy who called the September 11 hijackers martyrs in Australia?

    What do you expect from him? It’s people like him that make lives miserable for Muslims in Australia.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if another Cronulla-style riot emerges in Australia again thanks to him.

  • The funniest yet the saddest thing I’ve seen today, the sad part this stupid ignorant sheikh (though he doesn’t deserve the title) disrespecting his religion by calling women; meat not showing any kind of respect to them, although he came out of one. And the funny part when the reporter said “if the meat was eaten, it’s not the meat’s problem we in Australia blame the cat”. (I can tell the sheikh was shocked)
    Of course the way women dress has nothing to do with rape cases and I believe rape only occurs when a sick man or even a woman in some rare cases, get driven by his/her animal instinct ignoring common sense.

  • Thousands of these remarks ,teachings and analogies are made everyday in the Arab world, and no one complains.
    I guess the Sheik thought no one else is listening or he thinks he’s still in Egypt.

    Welcome to the Arab mentality (has nothing to do with all Muslims), this is the same BS found in Arabic school texts, where rich people are uneducated, and poor people are educated. Pretty girls are stupid and rich, smart and polite girls are dorks.

    I was once riding in a cab, and the guy had one of those Saudi religious tapes, the guy was talking about an incident where some women went to buy grocery while her husband sat back home. He said, how could he let her go, and the men at Souq will be looking at her with their eyes and filthy looks, imagine what you’ll say to Allah at judgment day about letting your wife be a prey for these men (and goes on and on, with his “oh the humanity” how oculd he!

    Regarding cats, I think whither it was covered or not, God bless them they’ll still “ravish” that meat.

    Anyways, while Westreners and Muslims are busy figuring out whose teachings,values and morals are superior, the Asians are taking over every major industry.

    “This post was MADE possible BY CHINA” (My Keyboard is made in China”

    Tarawneh I don’t see why you had to compare him to the pope. I guess today for non Muslims, Al Azhar Mufti is the Muslim “Pope”, although Qardawi and AlJazeera are trying to make him Pope, with no any hope I would say.

  • Firas: I didn’t compare him to the Pope as an individual. I was comparing the similarity of two religious figures saying something absurd and offensive to many people. In other words my concern was more about the remarks than the person and his religious authority.

  • “Understanding” Islam: any mufti, imam or sheik who claims women who do not wear the hijab are therefore to blame for being raped is at best misguided (if he changes his mind) and at worst a moron (if he sticks to it)

  • “Understanding” Islam: hence the tag line for marketing hijab becomes: “imagine a rape free world”.

    implying a woman is to blame for being raped is simply a moronic statement that defies the laws of logic. this silly argument also creates the slippery slope of implying that come judgment day Allah swt will show mercy on a rapist because he was seduced and is therefore not to blame, and will thus punish the victim for “inviting” the situation on herself.

  • This is a thug that does not deserve to live in a civilized country like Australia .. he simply made us all Arabs look much worse than what other terrorists and street thugs are presenting us to the rest of the world .. It is a shame that all of our voices reasonable and civilized arabs and muslims are being choked by barking dogs who hijack religion and benefit their pockets from it like this man ..

  • very sad.. but typical and expected.. everyone calls himself a shiekh and has the right to make fatwas to the world… its pathetic that he just put the blame on women… yes nowadays women are hardly dressed… and yes im sure its harder for men to lower thier gaze.. and yes there is more temptation around… BUT that doesn’t mean RAPE is an act a MAN CANT conrol! Him saying that just portrays MEN as not any animal but DOGS!! God is FAIR.. and if Men were helpless and CAN’t conrol themselves that at the slightest sight of a woman they have to RAPE her… then Would God really even judge them or y7asibhum for it?! Then it wouldn;t be a sin.. it would bt human nature…

    Anyway… its soo sad to hear this… and there are many cases of rape that included the man breaking in a decent woman’s house and raping her… and many other cases that did not have the women “uncover her MEAT”.. and just the idea he used the word “MEAT” shows his view on WOMEN… very degrading for both woman and men…

    and i think lots of ppl understand islam the way they want to.. and unfortunately they spread the wrong message to people…
    This is one of the reasons muslims get the worst stereotypes!!

    nice blog btw 🙂

  • we hear it too often now adays….blaming the woman for evrything!

    shes raped, she must of aske for it. shes perverted at,it must be her make-up. shes a vicim of domestic violence, she must be adisobedient wife.

    but to give him some credit, he was most likely taken out of context! to cause a big story iin the media. and plus apparently he delivered the sermon in arabic, so maybe he was also mistranslated!

  • Understanding Islam,

    I guess you missed the reports about all the wild and crazy Eid celebrations in Cairo. That meat was covered (hijabs as well as niqabs) and it didn’t stop the cats from attacking.

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