Sanctity of Human Life

A boy and a girl have died in a horrific car accident after being chased by a patrol that belongs to the Commission for Propagation of Virtue and Prevention of Vice in the northern city of Tabuk. In the details, the Toyota Camry of the boy was completely crushed under a large truck on Medina-Tabuk Rd during his attempt to escape from the Commission’s patrol.

This tragic incident is the latest in a series of highly publicized cases involving the Commission during the past two years that resulted in the death of citizens, such as the case of Salman Al Huraisi who died during a raid on his house in Riyadh last year as well as the case of Saud Al Balawi who died in the Commission center in Tabuk after he was arrested for giving a ride to an unrelated old woman.

I don’t want to talk about the apparent recklessness and brutality in these cases. I don’t want to talk about the number of violations on local laws and basic human rights committed in these cases. Because I will be stating the obvious. Instead, I just want to say a few words about another aspect here, which is the absence of any sign of respect to humanity.

I think that one the most important things these stories show is the blatant disregard for human life and dignity. Even if the Commission members were acting within their legal rights, the outcomes of their actions have been disastrous. Yet, none of these incidents has seen the Commission admit that any mistakes have been made or apologize to the families of those who died, directly or indirectly, on the hands of the Commission members.

This holier than though attitude is disgusting and is incompatible with the message the Commission try to promote of guarding Islamic values and protecting morality in public. How can they make such claim when they show absolute disrespect to the sanctity of human life?

Jeddah: Gurlz vs. Guyz

jeddah_boysI have said it before and I shall say it again and again: those Jeddawis never fail to impress me. Their latest is a 12-minute documentary featuring young men and women who talk about their views about the opposite sex and dating.

As I have said in a recent post, dating is a risky business in Saudi Arabia, and to have a documentary discussing it this way is truly amazing. The short film is produced by Izzaty Islamy, a two-year-old girl’s social club that sponsors monthly discussions and has conducted debate events at Dar Al-Hekma College and the International Medical Center. I can’t wait to get my hands on the film and watch it; and since it’s only 12-minute long the group might consider uploading it to YouTube or something like that.