Girls Beware!

In a lecture he gave earlier this week at KSU, Sheikh Abdul Aziz Bin Abdullah Aal Al-Sheikh, the Grand Mufti and Chairman of the Board of Senior Ulema, warned Saudi girls of those who want to deviate women from the right Islamic path:

They want her to go unveiled, moving about and traveling on her own, getting involved in relationships with whoever she wants, and calling whoever she wants to start up friendships with whoever she wants.

Who are they? They are the liberal forces. Damn them.

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80 thoughts on “Girls Beware!

  1. Ahmed

    I particularly enjoy the portion in which it states:

    “The Grand Mufti warned of the use of mobile phones and messaging to break the moral fiber.”

    Does this not seem redolent of earlier public discussions of decades past in which similar accusations were leveled against television?

    Is it any wonder with a powerful clerical establishment that sees plots against the moral fiber contained within electronic devices that our society is retrograde is so very many ways.

    One must bear in mond that such a senior cleric has the power of governmental force to support his views.

    If this were not reality, it would make for an umusing setting of a farce or a surreal play.

    But, as our reality, it inevitably has the effect of alienating youth and all those interested in advancement, for if even purely technological developments such as mobies are viewed as theologically suspect, then how can we be expected to truly make progress.

  2. What really bothers me about these statements are their confused notions of victim/perpetrator. On one hand women are considered victims because as the article states ” there are so many people who want to lure girls by contacting them on the phone, and oh how much they wish women would finally fall victim – and there are many women who have believed them”.

    But on the other hand, the real perpetrators then, would be the men trying to contact them and THEY would be the ones responsible for the loss of moral fiber. Thus the answer would lie in changing the behavior of men, not women to target the source.

    Here in Kuwait in the run-up to elections, one candidate was quoted as saying that voting for a woman would be a sin. What ego trip are they freaking on?!?!

  3. i cant understand how saudis allow these stone aged men to rule them and tell them how to live their lives—i have lived in saudi and have some friends and relatives still living there, and i know its a country full of hypocrites and sick people who use religion to manipulate and control others—males and females having sexual feelings for one another is common and natural, so why all this sexual suppression of males and females? do these stone aged men think that saudi women are so weak that they will jump into the sac with any man they get an opportunity to talk with?? and why should we females be ashamed of our bodies?? why should we feel that being born females is a crime and that we are responsible for all the sexual filth and crimes which occur? i am glad that i dont live anymore in that jungle called saudi arabia.
    p.s.= i wouldnt be surprised if these “religious” men themselves engaged in rape, marital or otherwise, adultery and pedophilia.

  4. I see a society in which men are free to choose to live in a modern society or free to live in a tradtional one. Free without asking for permission. Women are free only by the leave of their guardians.

    I guess Saudi men cannot be trusted (a view that is implicit in the sheiks comment). So, why not lock up the men and let the virtuous women roam free?

  5. “p.s.= i wouldnt be surprised if these “religious” men themselves engaged in rape, marital or otherwise, adultery and pedophilia.”

    We have left this trait for the Clerics of the Modern world :)

    Sick.

  6. Seriously, that one man doesn’t view women as human beings.

    “Moving about” like, oh, say WALKING to go SHOPPING is a threat to Saudi moral fiber.

    That is so absurd. And I’m not even picturing personal shopping. I’m picturing a woman buying food to cook. What kind of twisted idiot thinks that sort of situation is fraught with moral peril?

    And also, that friends part is really rankling. People aren’t meant to be alone. And friends can be of opposite genders because frankly speaking, I personally DON’T want to have sex or whatever with every single man I’ve ever met. And I’m not some sort of special person with awe inspiring personal will.

    Is this something completely impossible for them to comprehend?

    If so, then it is THEY who have problems because they lust for every woman they’ve ever met and assume women must be without personal standards just like them and their dirty minds.

  7. I’ve always wondered why this obsession to cover woman. Cultural? control? Both? When I was in Egypt, the guide said it was because woman per se are provoking creatures, how they walk…well I’m sorry but you can’t imagine how laud my family and I laughed.

    C’mon that’s amazing, does that mean that if I’m going to the supermarket, or just walking my dog, or even going to church, while on the way, he supposed that I was thinking of every man I found if I could date or bed him? hahaha no way, I have better things to think about, that’s just sick!!!

    But…if he did think that, it meant in fact he was used to think about this when walking and seeing woman….(projection of one’s weakness in others.. S. Freud.).

    So having woman covered for me is a way of hiding man’s weakness, and also a way of control. How can not an adult man control his instincts?

    I told the guide what I thought, and made fun saying that I might understand another kind of answer, but if it that one was really the answer maybe he should wear donkey blinkers, that would allow him to go to places without any distraction, and if that was not enough he should take a little bromide every morning, and in a week he would stop having this ideas. The problem was only in his mind. He was the pervert, not the woman he found on the way to shopping or taking kids to school. Obviously he thought I was crazy.

    Control. Because they tell you that protects you. In fact they say they protect you too. Excuse me? Protect me of what? Of man? In my country I do not need any protection. Men do not try to approach me or get my phone or date me or bed me every five minutes. They are not obsessed with us. And if there’s one that tries, just one mean look at him and he turns the other way.

    The more you segregate, try to avoid, protect or control, the more you get obsessed with it. A woman is normal. An uncovered woman is normal. A woman in the beach is normal. Once you get used you don’t even see us. When I go to the beach I do not see bodies. I see persons.

    And OMG, it could be so dangerous a woman choosing her husband…uffff that could mean a lot of men could never get married…so better not allow them to do so. And if they travel alone…they might be able to compare…what a drama! I guess they know what they are doing….hahaha

  8. There’s plenty of room in the USA for you Ahmed if you decide to relocate!

    Victoria your logic is right on the mark the victim/perpetrator paradigm is one the Saudi overlords have not figured out.

    The heart of the issue is Control. The mechanism to enforce that control is Religion. One can justify anything by quoting a 2000 year old book and it’s deemed acceptable (and cannot be criticized) because because its “divine” or the religious leaders have interpreted it thus. It makes me sick that women are being restricted in such demeaning and inhumane ways. I think the forces that control society will only come crashing down when the Saudi population declares atheism, and assert that they will not be ruled by primitive customs, beliefs, and practices and will theretofore think, create, and be who they are–FREELY–with a government that represents THEM and enacts public policy that is actually enabling society to progress to higher levels of development, and to create individual success.

  9. I have been going unveiled most of my life, have been moving around & about and traveling on my own…I guess he doesn’t like me, ha? *whistles & walks slowly away…*

  10. I’ve always wondered why this obsession to cover woman. Cultural? control? Both? When I was in Egypt, the guide said it was because woman per se are provoking creatures, how they walk…well I’m sorry but you can’t imagine how laud my family and I laughed.
    ——————————

    That is so stupid. I’m moving my foot in front of the other to get somewhere. And somewhere means not with you, Mr. Staring At My Ass. That’s RUDE.

    It takes a polite human being to not go around STARING like a dirty perverted CREEP when everybody else is minding their own business.

  11. I personally think it is about control & power. Men have the upper hand & they wanna keep it that way. Ever seen any one giving up power? I have not. Once you have it, you want to keep it at all cost. Even if that would mean telling fairy tale stories. :-P

  12. Whenever I see these sheiks in public, I have an uncontrollable urge to vomit on them. Shouldn’t they veil themselves so I don’t have this urge. It’s for their own good.

  13. Question to all complaining people about the covers.

    Can you walk naked in public in any Europe country or the United states?

  14. I know you aren’t that much of a moron Khaled. To me, walking around naked is just as extreme as walking around with every inch of your body, except the whites of your eyes, covered in black, especially in a desert country. Men like you should be forced to wear the abaya and niqab for a month.

  15. Victoria,

    Are able to answer my question directly?

    If you can’t answer it directly, and respectfully, u can leave this to someone else.

  16. Dear Khaled,

    Your question is a hypothetical implausability and is aimed at closing dialogue and making you impune to criticism not opening any debate. So YOU TELL ME> what is your point in asking it and how is walking around naked in Europe in any way correlated with restricting women’s movement in Saudi Arabia.

    I am really looking forward and curious about your response

    Kind Regards,

    V

  17. @Ahmad

    i usually like ur views & takes on society but this time i have 2 respectfully disagree.

    The man’s words r being taken way out of context and this post allowed it to happen @ a gr8er rate. just look @ this comment.

    Even f he overstated some thoughts of his own it isn’t right to make fun of him like this. wouldn’t you say so?

  18. I was thinking: I should write about this when I get home, but as usual I got the writer’s block.
    The thing is; it amazes me to see for example a religious young man in such a muscline country with the whole world in his hand if you wish and despite the nature of Islam which tells you that you should avoid sins no matter what, he’s actually so fragile to an extreme where he believes that a woman can mess up all of his spirituality and even capable of corrupting the whole world!
    I travel, I work, I’m in a relationship and my best friend is a guy and although saying this sounds like a fitna; but I’m only a girl for god sake and it’s coward to use me as a symbol for the community’s lack of moral values. I’m enjoying the funny thought though : )

  19. “Can you walk naked in public in any Europe country or the United states?”

    There are public beaches in the US that are clothing optional. Given the weather in many nothern states (such as Minnesota where I live) you simply cannot go around nude. It is much too cold in winter and in the summer you will be bitten by mosquitos.

    The Saudi religious view of proper behavior and dress for women is extreme. Do you think virtually all Western women are sinful by how they dress and act (my mother drove a car until age 83)? If you didn’t have to follow religious rule made by Muslim scholars would you view Western dress and actions (the way real people live not the way it is shown in movies) as sinful?

  20. Victoria,,

    WHAT?

    Hypothetical how? Let me rephrase:
    Is it LEGAL to walk Naked in public places.?

    This is a matter of legal or illegal, as for implausability, I spent four years in the US in college, and every now and then, a naked person (usually male),, start running in the dark heheeh, (I think for a bet with a friend), and security comes and take him from the scene.

    If you want a dialouge, I can spend a whole month talking to you and answering whatever you want, but, it is not healthy (for a conversation or dialouge) to answer question with another question.

    So, please, you tell me first,

    Is it LEGAL to walk Naked in public places in Europe or US?

    Regards,

  21. Jerry M,

    You mean in other beaches it is illegal to be nude?

    About your other question, driving has nothing to do with being sinful or not. Even clerics in Saudi, they don’t say that Driving is prohibited in religion, they only say, that it would cause more harm in society than its benefit. And I do NOT agree with them.

    As for being sinful because she dresses differently, maybe u meant she doesn’t cover her hair. She is not Muslim anyway, to us, the sin is in Not being muslim, so everything wouldn’t matter anyway. Is she going to go to hell because she is Not Muslim? :) that’s for Allah to judge and decide, Not us.

    Regards,

  22. In my country a few days ago a man who used to go, eveyday, naked while going in bike, and consequently arrested every day, had a judgement stating there was no rule in that city that obliged him to go dressed while biking. And although there is not an express law prohibiting that, people do not go naked.

    It’s common sense not to go nude in the city, at work, to school…You do not even need to forbide that.

    Does that mean I go naked to the beach? NO. You decide. You control. You can do both things. Both are respectable. Do what is more comfortable to you.

    I agree with @Victoria that asking how is walking around naked in Europe in any way correlated with restricting women’s movement in Saudi Arabia. You could explain that as It’s not easy to see the point. Whether unveiled or not, we all go covered, in west and east, as we wear clothes. The thing is that KSA way is totally extreme.

    But I’ve to tell you that we have a choice. It’s up to us deciding what to do and wear. Woman in KSA have no choice.

    .

  23. “t’s up to us deciding what to do and wear. Woman in KSA have no choice”

    so why do the majority of women here dress like whores, for the record I’m from the U.S

  24. @khaled M

    Yes there are legal nude beaches in many states in the US.

    I mention the way women in the US dress because Islam believes it is applying universal truth. If so, then US women are immoral by Saudi standards.

    I am glad that you are so sure of your religion that you can assume other people are going to hell!

  25. @s1

    maybe just because they have bad taste?

    Its their choice. I have the opportunity to dress like one too if I want, as I can get any kind of clothes in stores, but I don’t dress like one.

    It’s up to each one to decide which image you want to give to others.

    Still you decide.

  26. Jerry M, you are absolutely correct in response to Khaled M’s argument. Islam does apply a universal truth–it does so because its wholly totalitarian. No questioning. No criticizing. No amending. Just all out DOMINANCE. Hence why “The West” has become everything antithetical to Islamic “values”. Khaled’s response hardly surprises me though given the precedent of wholesale stereotyping.

    S1- “so why do the majority of women here dress like whores, for the record I’m from the U.S”–Hey buddy! So that was you chillin on Hookers Row?! I see how you can judge US women and how they dress because clearly all you associate yourself with are the prostitutes. Go figure!

  27. @s1 i visited several times the Us but I’ve never met saw a woman dressed like a whore (apart from the real one)….just out curiosity can you describe a woman dressed up like a whore? anyway it’s up their choice this choice isn’t given to the saudi women….when they put foot outside KSA (the majority of them) dress like an average woman (a little bit conservative) but if they have a choice the majority of them don average clothes

  28. I wish there is a significant presence of Saudi female bloggers so we can hear what they have to say directly. It’s sad, but the environment in SA is not even conducive for women to express their views as openly as males. I would imagine if this blog entry belonged to a woman, she would be called all kinds of names.

    For the critics, the decency laws that govern dress codes in the west are decided by elected officials with all the population participating in the debate, whereas in SA it’s decided by unelected males with no significant input.

  29. so why do the majority of women here dress like whores, for the record I’m from the U.S
    ———————–

    Majority? Really? REALLY?

    Why must it always come back to some idiot MAN thinking women give two farts about what he thinks? It is obvious all you do is stare and judge. You’ve never ASKED anybody about why the dress the way they do. And frankly speaking, bad taste is just bad taste.

    Men go out in public looking like idiots too.

  30. To “The FireBrand:

    You state:

    “Islam does apply a universal truth–it does so because its wholly totalitarian. No questioning. No criticizing. No amending. ”

    Islam does have very strong elements of triumphalism within it, and the form that our governmental clerics here support certainly has stronger trends of such triumphalism than other forms of Islam.

    It should be noted that many religions have such triumphalism [Christianity is but one example] .

    However, it would be incorrect to say that within Islam there is no questioning, criticizing, or amending.

    As to questioning, even within the most triumphalist forms of Islam, there is a body of Islamic jurisprudence devoted to questions and answers.

    And, within certain forms of Islam (some variants of Sufi for example) questioning and doubting are even viewed as a mystical path to be taken.

    As for amending, that is complex. Clearly, innovations in Islamic thought have occurred. And, some forms of Islam are so filled with amendment (Ahmadiyya) that they are viewed as heterodox by many other believers.

    as frustrating as our clerical establishment here may be, one should certainly not view it to equate with Islam.

    Indeed, there exist critics of our clerical establishment who do so from a religious basis because they assert that our religion in fact is at variance with the religion intermixed with tribal values and customs that is in practice here.

    One should not create a false parody of Islam because of the practices that we follow here.

    One does not say that Christianity as a whole has specific characteristics based on the practices of the Opus Dei movement of European Christianity.

    Islam, in reality, is considerably more varied than one might think by solely examining our nation.

    I would urge all others to similarly not make logically impermissible arguments by extrapolation from one example to all all situations.

    Discussions regarding isolated instances of clothing worn (or apparently not worn) are profitless.

    Let us all agree that our religion requires standards of modesty in dress.

    The question, I believe, is whether every standard required by one or more believers should be mandated by the government.

    I know of instances in which our Commission members have imposed by force standards on ladies in my family that are not supported even by the Commission. However, these police can act with impunity, and have done so.

    The question should be whether the force of government should support such a clerical police constabulary.

    The question should not be whether there would always be in our very conservative society a legal code that would mandate far greater mandatory standards of modest dress than in Europe.

    Of course such laws would exist.

    The perceived by some right to wear mini-skirts seems to me to be less than the right to freedom of conscience, freedom of association, and other rights contained within the UN Declaration of Universal Human Rights.

  31. Jerry M- me thinks s1 lives inside a television program studio where they shoot the shows, lives in a brothel, or is homeless on the beach… I live in NY and not every woman out there on the streets going about their daily lives dresses like she belongs in a “gentleman’s” magazine!

    With so many people who are working everyday of their lives, worrying if their jobs will be cut, if they will lose their homes; their very lives…the dress codes of whores would be the least of their worries. Not to mention – s1, most companies have dress code policies in their by-laws.

    And boy will I be astounded next time I see a doctor enter the Operating Room looking like a “whore” or illegally naked!

    And no it is not legal in Europe to walk around naked; but it is illegal to drive if you are totally blind… s1…what that has to do “with the price of coffee in Columbia or Mocha in Yemen” is beyond me!

  32. Puca,

    You mean that nobody (especially Police) should HAVE any RIGHT to restrict any person on wearing or exposing parts of his body?

    (Yes or No)

    —————

    Jerry M,

    This was not my question,

    My question was:

    You mean in other beaches it is illegal to be nude?

    Or

    Is it legal to be nude in All beachs in the US?

    (Yes or No)

    Finally, Yes, I have total faith in my religion, but I DID NOT SAY that other people will go to hell, re-read what I wrote carefully.

    ———————–

    Ellis,

    There are hundreds of female bloggers, but they write in Arabic, and in most cases you won’t like what they write :)

    As for decency laws. I love your argument, it makes sense.

    So, does that mean we as people in Saudi, have the right, if given the chance, to vote that woman should cover their hairs in public (enforced by law).

    Among all other people who replied, I think u’re the only one whom I can have civilized dialogue with.

    Thanks.

  33. @khaled,

    I apologize for careless reading.

    As far as full nudity everywhere, no, it isn’t something you can do everywhere, but women can breastfeed in public in many places (everywhere? I am not sure). This would have been unthinkable 50 years ago, but it is common today in the US.

  34. Khaled M,

    You’re a provocateur.

    The way it is in SA is very skewed. Men advance laws that affect only women. I doubt we’ll see both sexes voting on a law that equally calls for both sexes to be totally covered.

  35. Jerry,

    Ok, so there are restrictions, in a way or another.

    The next question would be:
    Is it ok for the authorities in Europe or the US to impose any restrictions on what people can expose or what they can’t?

    (yes or no)

    Thanks,

    ———–
    Elis,

    I thought that labeling people is a trait of extremists only, ain’t it?

    That was not an answer, let me rephrase the question so that it would fit your criteria.

    So, does that mean we as people in Saudi, have the right, if given the chance, to vote that woman should cover their hairs in public (enforced by law). Assuming that ALL Males and Females will take part of this vote.

    Thanks,

  36. Andrew,

    You make some very good points, but when judging a religion an outsider will usually start with externals, such as the behavior of the members.

    Islam in the US still in primarily practiced by foreigners (and African Americans who came into conventional Islam via the NOI sect). Mosques are funded by the Gulf states (often Saudi Arabia). They are not just spreading Islam, but their particular culture along with it.

    So, there is no idea of adapting standards of modesty for the West, simply the one abaya fits all standard.

    Many mosques in the US hire Imams who don’t even speak English! What is the point of having sermons in Arabic to Muslims who may speak Urdu or Pashto (and of course English) but little Arabic. The children in these mosques speak no Arabic. It is a complete waste.

  37. @ Khaled M.

    YES is the answer, and NO it’s also the answer.

    Yours is a tricky question, and the only options you offered me is YES/NOT, so you don’t really want my answer.

    One can interpret or misinterpret anything written. My statement was pretty clear..

  38. Puca,

    Does that mean you are not really clear on what you believe in? and have no rigid point of view?

    If u are judging what is happening in Saudi, that means you have crystal clear “principles” and you would be able to answer my question, with yes or no.

    P.S. My question is NOT tricky, it is pretty straight forward, and many libertarians or naturalists would answer with clear cut (Yes, NOBODY should restrict any person on doing whatever they want)

    Regards,

  39. Jerry M:

    Your points are reasonable.

    We will be judged by the actions of our members, and regrettably often by the actions of our most irresponsible or incendiary members.

    However, I would urge that neither we Saudis nor our religion be judged on such a basis.

    I would note that our country is far more complex than the incendiary attitudes of many of our clerical establishment.

    Moreover, to extrapolate from them to our religion as a whole is risible. In Malaysia, for example, a predominantly Islamic nation, the head of the central bank is a lady, as are many other powerful leaders.

    One should not deduce that because we Saudis behave and act in a certain manner, and because many, many holy sites of our religion are located within our nation, that our culture is more authentically religious than that of others.

    Our social norms are often based on tribal values that persist.

    Just as one does not deduce that because Francisco Pizarro was an avowed Christian who killed thousands in the name of his beliefs and whose actions were backed by the Christian governmental clerical establishment so too all other Christians such as Finns must share his views.

    In reality, societies are more complex, and such false deductions are impermissible.

  40. @Andrew

    Thanks for you comments.

    One thing that is obvious from discussions like this is that often the terms we use in discussion don’t have the same meaning. For example in the US most people would not use the word ‘Christian’ to describe the Catholic church. While from a Muslim view Christianity is one religion, most Christians regard the varieties of Christianity as distinct religions, and are puzzled at why Muslims assume Pope Benedict has any relevance to them. Most modern Protestants would tell you that what the Spanish empire did in the Americas has nothing to do with Christianity as they understand it.

    I am sure most Saudis are baffled by the terms used by Americans to describe their religious establishment, in particular the term Wahabi. (and I apologize for any misspellings) It has no religious meaning for Muslims but it is a convenient term for many Westerners when making trying to describe how Saudi official Islam differs from that practiced by Sunnis in Lebanon.

  41. Andrew,

    Just to clarify. My point is that Islam isn’t practiced in a vacuum. The reason why Westerners are often so suspiscious about Islamic institutions in the West is that they do come into the West with so much cultural baggage.

    If anyone thinks it is just Islam, let them search on google for what many Protestants say about the Catholic church (‘whore of Babylon’ is a common phrase), many Christians in the US regard the Catholic church as something beneath contempt. If Muslims expect any better for their religion and institutions they should quickly disabuse themselves of that notion.

  42. Khaled,

    “Is it ok for the authorities in Europe or the US to impose any restrictions on what people can expose or what they can’t?”

    Yes, societies in both Europe and the US have governments that are elected. Most of them have written constitutions (the UK is one exception) that set guidelines. So, it is acceptable to write laws that set limits of dress.

    People have the ability to contest the validity of those laws in court.

    I don’t think Saudi Arabia, as an example, has the same kind of legal codes, and it certainly doesn’t have an elected government.

  43. Jerry,

    Thanks for your clear answer.

    So, if we start a (honest and fair) poll in Saudi, where men and women will be casting their opinions, and, say, 70% of them say, yes, women should be covering at least their hair in public places.
    Then you think it will be alright? and we won’t be oppressing anybody then?

  44. @Khaled M

    I am clear on what I believe, and I have clear principles.

    I judge with no rigid point of view your question. That just means what it means, don’t read between lines or judge me as weak, as I’m not. What the answers means is: I’m not strict, understanding that as a person unable to understand that not everything in life is black or white. Grey also happens.

    But your question is not that easy, as your answer has proved.

    I can not answer yes as a libertarian(anarchist when translated to my language) or a naturalist as you say, because I am not.

    And I can not answer no as If I think that compulsory authority must control all my life aspects.

    That’s why I can not answer only with a YES/NOT.

    There’s life between extrems.

    If we all thought the same about everything.. it would be a boring existence.

  45. @ Khaled,

    “Then you think it will be alright? and we won’t be oppressing anybody then?”

    That is a good question. The US supported slavery for many years. The fact that is was legal didn’t stop it from being both immoral and oppressive.

    In many ways the problems I have mentioned about Saudi Arabia have a similar example in the US.

    The populace can make bad laws. The saving grace is that those laws can be changed. It only took 100 years after the US Civil War for necessary civil rights legislation to be enacted. Of course change moves faster today than in the 19th century, but it is probably foolish for Westerners to expect immediate change in a country whose culture is so traditional (ie: tribal/family based).

    One problem in the US is that even after the first attempt at civil rights legislation was made, it took along time for the right to vote to be available to all adult citizens. It took a long time before some immigrants, in particular Chinese, had the right to receive citizenship.

    The only reason why Saudi Arabia’s situation is important to outsiders, is that Saudi Arabia has a vast amount of economic power. It has imported millions of foreigners to work in the country. How it treats those foreigners is important to foreigners. I don’t really care if Saudi women accept their status. I do care if American women married to Saudis have rights to see their children when those marriages end (as will happen on occassion). I do care how American workers are treated.

    The US has had a long problem in how it treats its own immigrant labor – especially when that labor is at the lower economic end. So, my criticisms of Saudi Arabia shouldn’t let anyone assume that conditions in the US are even nearly perfect.

  46. Puca,

    I was not judging you. I was asking you. And u made it clear that you have clear point of view :)

    So, follow up question, based on your reply about (relativity of things).

    Does that mean it is NOT always the case, that the Majority in a democracy can impose laws that would make some minorities dissatisfied?

    This HAS to be a (yes/no) question, because I am actually asking if it is black/white or Not to let majority impose laws on minorities.

  47. Puca:

    “I’ve always wondered why this obsession to cover woman. Cultural? control?”

    Muslim women are ordered to cover up in the Quran. It’s NOT men asking us to. Covering up/hijab should be a woman’s decision. Her choice to OBEY the Lord. Islam doesnt call for compulsion.

  48. @ Khaled M

    hahah ok!!

    About the YES/NO question… sorry but I’ll answer you first, with an example that drives spanish politicians crazy.

    Catalan and vasc regional political parties (minority) rule the country when there is not an absolute majority. So minority can impose rules too.

    Yes, a democratc majority can make rules that not always prove right. Democratic majority, that when realizes that what they have legislated proves wrong, or unsatisfactory or discriminatory, have the chance to repeal them.

  49. @ Muslima

    Hi!

    As you say, I do think that covering up/hijab should be a muslim woman’s decision.

    The thing is that not in all muslim countries you can decide.

    I know there are some in which you can really choose. Some wear it some don’t.

    And some others where there’s no choice. YOU MUST. And that issue becomes an obsession, you must because if you do, you are a modest woman, unseen, protected, loved and respected for your true selves…

    But you can be all that too if you don’t cover.

    It’s a muslim woman decision. But it won’t be a real decission unless..they can really have the chance to decide.

  50. muslimah:

    I would be more careful.

    When you state: “Islam doesnt call for compulsion.” you must recognize that there certainly are forms of our religion that do call for compulsion.

    I note this because I feel it to be important to be clear that one cannot say “Islam does require A or B or C” with very few exceptions.

    Rather, in most cases, there are varieties of Islamic belief, ranging from one view to another.

    In truth, our religion is extremely varied in its beliefs and approaches to many issues.

    It is, lamentably to say, that our clerical establishment here often would aver that there is only a single religious response to many questions.

    However, Islamic thought is extremely heterogenous, and one must not say that our religion only requires one thing.

    Indeed, those most incendiary generally state that religion requires but one action.

    Please note that I mean this in the best and kindest possible way.

  51. @ Puca

    “The thing is that not in all muslim countries you can decide.”

    There’s no Islamic country today. there are muslim majority countries more like.

    “But you can be all that too if you don’t cover.”

    yes you can. but hijab and modesty are an integral part of Islam (for men and women)

    I can write a book on saudi arabia honestly. pls dont judge Islam by that country.

  52. “It is, lamentably to say, that our clerical establishment here often would aver that there is only a single religious response to many questions.”

    and that’s the root of all the madness in saudi arabia.

  53. @ muslima

    Don’t worry, I’m not!

    Every country, as every person is a whole world. (I hope the translation of this spanish say, is.comprehensible)

  54. muslimah:

    I strongly agree with your statement ” dont judge Islam by that country.”

    Here we often utilize the fact that many, many holy places are located within our country to create the view that the form of Islam supported by our clerical establishment is the truest and most authentic form of Islam.

    However, this is not true.

    Our religion is a universal religion; as such, there is no rationale for believing that the form extant within our nation is superior to other forms solely because it is located here.

    With reference to the other discussions, I would remind everyone that an ochlocracy is not the same as a democratic government.

    Modern thought encompasses both the notion that people as a majority should be able to govern themselves, and also the equally important view that the basic rights of minorities must be zealously guarded, even when such defence runs counter to the views or wishes of the majority.

    Of course, I do not view a right to wear a mini-skirt as a fundamental or basic right.

  55. Minorkle here. Yes I was quite a batsman in my day. After I graduated from Mount Holyoke as a utility infielder and ambidextrous pitcher, I began to ply my trade with the Nippon Ham Fighters. My diminutive size made me ideal for the Japanese leagues. I continued as a utility player and part time mascot. I was beloved in my own dojo. Unfortunately things took a sour note when I was called out on strikes to end the 1988 Japanese World Series. Our hated rivals, the Yakult Swallows had stolen the series and I was to blame. The headlines blasted, THERE IS NO JOY IN NIPPON, NOT SO MIGHTY MINORKLE HAS STRUCK OUT. Oh the indignity of it all. I hung up my spikes, never to play again.

  56. Very interesting topic, whether or not it was taken out of context; traditional religious clerics have been and still to stand against women rights. I do not know why they always mistrust women and expect the worst of them in their decrees. It is very complicated but Saudi Arabia has to understand that it is different now. We have great modernist Ulama who call for modernism within Islam.

  57. That video makes sense for a country like the United States where wearing the hijaab is a choice, but in Saudi Arabia, which forces more than the hijaab in dresscode by law, without choice and where women have no right to participate in politics.

    Also, living in Kuwait, just from my personal experience, the women wearing THE MOST CORPORATE MAKE UP PRODUCTS and the MOST AMOUNT OF MAKE UP are the ones who wear hijaab. I have never seen so much spending on designer, western cosmetics as when I came to this country. If this video tries to create a connection between wearing a hijaab and denouncing consumerism Kuwait will prove it totally wrong.

  58. Lindquist : Islam is not the only religion, who ‘afraid’ of womens sin. Also in christianity the ‘power’ of women is or was an integral part.
    A consequence of the secularisation has been at least in parts of the christian world, that some of the more dubious moral judgements in religion has been downplayed.
    But you shouldn’t go more than 50 years back, before you could meet judgements like the Grand Mufti’s in the public discourse.

  59. Victoria:

    What you say about external efforts to reinforce feminine identity is interesting.

    I have read theories that our society now, with its very conservative social mores, is much like certain South american societies of 150 years ago.

    In those societies, gender differences are also extremely important, and different dress, etc. also all serve to reinforce those differences.

  60. Heads up folks….the next big story….the judge suggesting that men slapping their wives is okay. Those with 2 halalas of common sense have got to rise up in various ways….big and small and insist on what kind of country Saudi is going to be. No one will hand you the way of life that you want for your country or hand you the rights that you want. You must make yourself heard and keep expressing yourself…otherwise a minority of taliban-esque quality will be quite happy to dominate you all.

  61. @ robyn graves: our Prophet (salAllahu’alaihee wasallam) said : the best amongst you is he who treats his wife the best. obviously that guy doesnt know what’s he talking about. i feel sorry for all the women in his life.

  62. i dont know why there isnt more outcry in the rest of the world about laws that oppress women in KSA and elsewhere.

    excuse my language, but as we say in new york city, this is downright fucked up.

  63. Betty,

    I don’t know!

    But I thought you ARE the democratic countries, why not (FORCE) your (ELECTED) leaders to stop supporting the dictatorships in the Middle East?
    And the people over there will take care of toppling them.

    P.S. No thanks we don’t want to COME and remove the dictators here, one disaster in Iraq is enough. Just stop supporting them please.

  64. @ The Fire Brand: The day Saudi population declare atheism, hell will break loose. Many enraged Muslims from South Asia will probably wage war on atheist Saudis (as they will be in the majority) in order to drive them out of the Holy Land. probably the dawn of third world war.

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