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Gay! 100 lashes with teenagers counting and recording on their iPhones

One of Southeast Asia’s strictest Islamic enclaves just got a lot more hostile to same-sex couples.  In Aceh, the most orthodox corner of Muslim-majority Indonesia, gay sex is now punishable by 100 lashes. On a public stage. By a cane-wielding figure clad head-to-ankles in dark brown robes (with a yellow decorative fringe). The sting of a rattan cane is only part of the punishment. Aceh’s officials admit the primary objective is shame. That’s why they invite crowds to jeer and gawk and excitedly count off the lashings meted out to men and women accused of petty crimes. Sound archaic? That’s the point. The lashings are administered under Shariah law, a moral code dictated in the Quran that dates back the seventh century. Aceh’s modern-day whipping sessions are meant to play out as they did in ancient times — only with teenagers recording the beatings on their iPhones. In the 12th century, Aceh was among the first places of Asia to absorb Islam from seafaring Arabs. Today, the far-flung province remains proudly orthodox. It’s the only territory in Indonesia that enforces Shariah law, which forbids alcohol, premarital romance and women in tight jeans.-MSNBC News

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