Love Is Not A Crime

Oh Qatar,
fishing and pearl diving
until 1940
then oil and gas
on a flat, desert land

You’ve come so far
yet have far to go
before reaching the gates
to the semi-civilised court
of the rest of the world

With women instructed to cover
heads, shoulders, knees and toes
With love determined by The State
A public kiss that leads to arrest
The prohibition of the unmarried, living together
Sex outside marriage, illegal
You flog unmarried women who are pregnant
and homosexuality is a crime

Under the spotlight
of the football (soccer) World Cup
of 2022
EIGHT countries in attendance
(including by default as host, yourself, Qatar)
criminalise homosexuality and promote
backward oppression and discrimination
I didn’t hear or read anyone mention about that

And you, Qatar
are one of a class of 69
A list of shame consisting of:
Afghanistan, Algeria
Antigua & Barbuda
Bangladesh, Barbados, Bhutan
Brunei, Burundi, Cameroon
Chad, Comoros, Cook Islands
Dominica, Egypt, Eritrea
Eswatini, Ethiopia
Gambia, Ghana, Grenada and Guinea
Guyana, Iran, Jamaica
Kenya, Kiribati
Kuwait, Lebanon
Liberia, Libya, Malawi
Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritania,
Mauritius (death by stoning)
Morocco, Myanmar, Namibia
Nigeria
Occupied Palestinian Territory (Gaza Strip)
Oman, Pakistan
Papua New Guinea
Qatar, Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and The Grenadines
Samoa, Saudi Arabia, Senegal
Sierra Leone, Singapore
Solomon Islands, Somalia
South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan
Syria, Tanzania, Togo, Tonga
Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu
Uganda, Uzbekistan
Yemen
Zambia and Zimbabwe

While written into law as a crime
change will take a very, long time
While, to be fair
prejudice and discrimination exists everywhere
but the direction of movement is progressive
In the right direction
towards freedom
And I’m looking at you, Iceland, Norway, Finland and Sweden
Leaders, seated at the High Table

Love is not a crime
Love is not a death sentence
Love is not what you decide
Love happens
And you know it
Because,
probably it’s happened to you


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