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Are Politics Regressing to Premodern Forms? Piroschka Van De Wouw / Reuters

Are Politics Regressing to Premodern Forms? Piroschka Van De Wouw / Reuters

The sultan of Brunei has proposed stoning being a punishment for male sodomy.

Piroschka Van De Wouw / Reuters

The sultan’s hand felt soft and mild, more suited to a moisturizer commercial compared to taking part in a stoning that is public. The sultan of Brunei had shaken tens of thousands of hands in the previous two days, and I worried that by the time his hand shook mine, it would be blistered or leathery by the official count. But absolute monarchs are very different away from you and me personally, and the sultan for this oil-rich Southeast Asian city-state had been various dermatologically also. Whenever I arrived at the front of the receiving line and squeezed the royal hand, gently, we thought of Curley in Of Mice and guys, whom wore a “glove fulla vaseline” to help keep their hand “soft for their spouse. ” (Wives, we thought, in the situation. The sultan hbecause received as numerous as two at time. )

The sultan, Hassanal Bolkiah, recently attracted denunciation and fury by instituting death by stoning as punishment for male sodomy.

( The prescribed punishment for intimate functions between ladies is less harsh. ) He had foreshadowed this policy years earlier but delayed applying it until April. Within months, he had reversed himself, or at the least promised he would wait the alteration until following the thirty days of Ramadan. It continues to be delayed. We came across him during final year’s available home, a yearly three-day occasion whenever any man can come to your sultan of Brunei’s palace, stay in line, and shake their hand therefore the arms of approximately a dozen other people in the royal family members.