Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research

LGBTQ and Islam Revisited: The Days of the Donald

(Update: Aug. 30, 2021) Following a debate that took place at the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America (AMJA) in 2016 regarding how American Muslims could maintain their commitment to Islam’s normative position on marriage and sexuality while also practically navigating the political challenges in the United States associated with defending Muslims’ safety and religious rights against rising Islamophobia, Yaqeen Institute published a scholarly debate on the subject between Dr. Jonathan Brown and Dr. Shadee Elmasry. Dr. Brown, who had already published his views elsewhere, stridently upheld the orthodox Islamic sexual norms while, following other leading American Muslim scholars, advocated the path of political accommodation to secure reciprocal rights for Muslims as a religious minority. Dr. Shadee Elmasry argued that no such accommodation is warranted. Given the subsequent cultural and political developments, Dr. Brown no longer holds this position. He agrees that his earlier treatment of the subject has been rendered obsolete by Supreme Court rulings that entrench and enforce understandings of sexual and gender identity in law. We have decided, therefore, to archive this article and hope to address this topic in the near future, inshaAllah.


Dr. Jonathan Brown

Director of Research | Dr. Jonathan A. C. Brown is a Director of Research at Yaqeen Institute, and an Associate Professor and Chair of Islamic Civilization at Georgetown University. He is the editor in chief of the Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam and the Law, and the author of several books including Misquoting Muhammad: The Challenges and Choices of Interpreting the Prophet's Legacy.

Dr. Shadee Elmasry

Dr. Shadee Elmasry

Contributor | Dr. Shadee Elmasry was born and raised in New Jersey. He completed degrees at The George Washington University and The University of London, SOAS, while also learning with scholars in the traditional manner. He now teaches at the New Brunswick Islamic Center and heads the Safina Society (which offers classes live and online at www.SafinaSociety.org).