Sunday, March 28, 2010

Mothers Day and Honour Killings


Last Sunday Lebanon and all the Arab countries recognized March 21, the first day in spring, as Mothers Day. On this day every year we pay tribute to the person who has given us love and attention from the moment of birth. Mothers are celebrated for the sacrifices that they happily make for the welfare of their children. Motherhood is arguably the best example of what it means to be noble and to and human.

Isn’t it though hypocritical when we claim to uphold mothers for all what they do for us but structure our laws and behavior so as to deny women their basic human rights. So far we have not elected any women to a position of political leadership and we have denied the female sex their right to be treated as equals as any other citizen in our society. Lebanese women are not permitted to convey the Lebanese citizenship to their children when the father is not a Lebanese national and many live in fear of physical abuse, possibly death, if the males in their family do not approve of their behavior. Males boast of their nights on the town, their sexual “achievements” but look down and even punish the females in their household if they dare fall in love and be seen holding hands or necking with the boy next door. This must be the epitome of double standards.

Although the right to vote has been granted to women, in most cases the local tradition still dictates that females cast the ballot that the males in the household approve of. Unfortunately women are treated as second class citizens, as individuals whose legal stature is on the same level as that of a slave. She has, in most cases, no choice but to accept the husband that her parents have picked for her. Is that the woman that we celebrate once a year, the one that we choose to oppress abuse and manipulate for the next 364 days every year?

Sadly the rights of women in our region are as distant to the females as democracy and human and modernity are for society at large. It is time that we realize that none of us is free as long as one of us is oppressed. We can never claim to be liberated when half of us are denied legally their social, political and economic freedoms. The empowerment of women is an essential ingredient in an equitable, free and liberated society. If we fail to liberate women then we will always be enslaved.

Yet we can be thankful that despite all the above listed injustices we have thus far resisted the heinous practice of stoning to death as this barbaric practice is still carried away and condoned in Saudi Arabia, Sudan, UAE,Iraq ,Jordan and Iran to name just a few of the countries that celebrate Mothers Day but treat women otherwise as a commodity at the disposal of the males in society. But the question must be asked what is the difference between stoning to death and honour killings? Not much, I am afraid.

7 comments:

Jawad said...

Contradictions in society are not exactly uncommon but this one takes the cake.

Anonymous said...

You know, all whores, except my mother...

Anonymous said...

Are you aware that only certain women who have fallen into sin get stoned in the countries that you mentioned?
Surprisingly, the number of adulturous women in those countries is almost nil. So very few get stoned. As a result, women in those countries become great mothers.
In other countries where the ruling is not applied adultery is rampant. Often, adulturous women neglect their children in the process as families break up, thereby foresaking their role as mothers.

ghassan karam said...

Anon,
Women are not a commodity for the sexual pleasure of men.
No one has the right to abuse another human being.
What is ironic, actually laughable had it not been so backward is the argument that you propose: We have the right to kill her in order to save her soul. Let me ask you: who will save yours?
But Unfortunately I do not expect you to understand what I am saying since it is clear that you strongly believe that Males are superior and they are more equal than females. And please do not tell me that is the word of Allah. No God can be so cruel and discriminating.

ghassan karam said...

The above was in response to Anon March 30,

Anonymous said...

Are you willing to share your 'wife' with a stranger? Presuming you are betrothed and not living in sin.
I am afraid you might be spreading corruption on earth. In which case you would be liable to similar punishment along with the women you may be fornicating with.
And be careful not to challenge Allah. You may get smitten by His Wrath.
Allah does not like those who spread corruption on His earth. These are the agents of Satan who was the first to be stoned.

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