Gay Panic

Iranian cleric warns COVID-19 vaccine is turning the world gay

Ayatollah Tabrizian. Via YouTube

A leading Iranian cleric has warned his followers against taking the COVID-19 vaccine. The reason: it will make them gay.

Ayatollah Abbas Tabrizian–whom followers describe as the “Father of Islamic Medicine”–wrote a homophobic rant to his Telegram account over the weekend. In it, he told his approximately 210,000 followers that the COVID vaccine is rapidly turning the world gay.

“Don’t go near those who have had the COVID vaccine. They have become homosexuals,” Tabrizian wrote.

The assertion may seem odd, though a bit of context offers a clue as to Tabrizaian’s motives.

Related: Iran is forcing gay men to undergo sex reassignment surgery or be executed

“Actually, his goal of spreading nonsense is to try to scare people [out] of getting vaccinated while the leader of the regime and other officials got Pfizer and they don’t provide it for the people with the excuse that they don’t trust the West,” Iranian dissident Sheina Vojoudi told the Jerusalem Post.

“Like other clerics in the regime, also Tabrizian relates all the shortages to sexuality. The clerics in Iran are suffering from lack of knowledge and humanity,” Vojoudi added.

In other words, the Iranian regime is unable to offer the vaccine to most of the nation’s population. Instead, Tabrizian wants to avoid public outcry by scaring the public away from wanting vaccination. Iran has a long history as one of the most homophobic nations on the planet; persons caught engaging in homosexual activity are subject to execution or forced gender transition.

For the record, this isn’t the first time Ayatollah Tabrizian has raised some questionable methodology when it comes to COVID. Last year, he advised followers to avoid the virus by combing hair, eating onions and stuffing a cotton ball in their anus.

At the time of this writing, Iran has documented about 1.5 million cases of COVID-19, with more than 58,000 deaths. Experts widely consider the country one of the worst-hit on earth, alongside Brazil, India and the United States. Late last year, the American newspaper The Nation reported that Iran is on the brink of total collapse due to the chaos sewn by the virus.