The Veil Of Islam

It occurs to us at BFD that one of the primary motivating factors of many Islamic fundamentalists’ dim view of western culture, is the fact that western culture has no need for, nor any interest in the veiling of any members of our society.  The fact that females of the human species are regarded by western culture as equal to males of the species in terms of human rights and the rule of law is something that scares the bejesus out of Islamists  in positions of power (always male) in the Islamic dominated societies.

It seems to us that the veiling of women in areas of the world dominated by Islam is for the one, unspoken, but universally understood purpose of subjugating women, and maintaining the delusion that just as a diamond ring, an automobile, cattle, a business asset, a bank account, an oil well, or an airplane, are simply chattel, so are female family members chattel, the personal property of the family patriarch.  As chattel, females are to be protected from predation, reserved for barter when making family alliances, used for the propagation of male heirs, and to serve as a symbol of the family patriarch’s wealth and influence.  Females in contemporary Islamic societies do not have anywhere near the rights that females have achieved in western society, as described through first-person experience by Megan K. Stack in her story titled In Saudi Arabia, a view from behind the veil published in the Los Angeles Times.

The plight of Saudi women, and likely many other women in countries ruled by Islamic oligarchy’s are discussed by the blogger “hometownwriter” in the SAND GETS IN MY EYES blog in a posting titled Metaphors and Wajeha Al-Huwaider.  If you follow this blog you will find much more revealing information about life in Saudi Arabia from the perspective of an American ex-patriot.

In our analysis this goes a long way towards our understanding of why radical Islamic fundamentalists would view westerners as infidels and a threat to their way of life.  The balance of power in their world is like an inverted pyramid, with virtually no power at the inverted tip, where females stand, and increasing power up the inverted pyramid accruing to family patriarchs, then accruing further and further up the inverted base of the pyramid with the most power accruing to the ruling oligarch.  Because this is an inverted pyramid, however, the smallest amount of force from outside could tip it over, so of course a good and righteous member of Islamic society will strive to annihilate any and all western infidels that pose a threat to the equilibrium of the pyramid.  In our view this is just how the system works in this culture.

If this hypothesis is correct then, it would seem that as long as any western nation, and the United States in particular, persists in imposing themselves through their direct intervention in the Islamic world, we can expect a sustained and unrelenting resistance and push back, and desire for annihilation of our own society, by radical Islamists.  This leads us at BFD to surmise that the only rational tactics that the west should take to neutralize the threat to our own peaceful existence from the hands of Islamic radicals, and to foster an environment in which Islamic societies recognize and accept that all of their people are equals, are to first remove our presence from where it is not wanted, removing the direct physical and societal threats that are perceived to their value system.

Secondly we need to promote full knowledge and understanding of the freedoms, rights, rules of law, ethical and moral values that are the cornerstones of our society through our education system, through our media arts, through our literature, through our mass communications such as radio, television, and the Internet, to any and every ear, eye and mind we can reach the rest of the world.  If those who may be subjugated, anywhere in the world, can be reached and empowered with the knowledge that life can be made different, then eventually, aspirations of another way of life will grow organically and from within those societies that are enmeshed in cultures clinging upon ancient folkways and customs.

Those of us who have achieved a safe, free, peaceful, productive, intellectually and emotionally rich life have an obligation to share our culture, our knowledge of ourselves and our world with those in the world who are lacking parity with us, in an open, generous manner.  We need to lead by example, to demonstrate to our human brothers and sisters that they can make choices in their lives, and we need to keep the lines of communications to them open at all times and in all manners.  Cultural and political change, anywhere in the world, has to come from within, but that can only happen when there is knowledge of another path.

Having said all of the above, it seems to us at BFD that we, in the United States, also have an obligation to take a long, hard, and honest look at our own culture and the values that are promoted in our own society, and at the teachings and messages that we espouse to our children, our citizens and to the world at large via the moral and ethical values that we teach through our families, and schools.  We need to consider the messages that are sent to the rest of the world through the way we conduct our business, through the popular culture that we distribute, and through our actions and the way we comport our nation among all other nations.

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13 Responses to The Veil Of Islam

  1. ms. place says:

    Stoning is still an acceptable form of punishment in this culture. A woman who has been raped is an outcast. In fact, in order to get revenge, it is common to rape your enemy’s Virgin daughter.

    One of my heroines is Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who now lives in the U.S. She was under house protection for years for daring to tell the truth about the plight of Islamic women. Here is one short link to a story about her, but you can find plenty on the Net. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4985636.stm

  2. Big Fella says:

    Yes, we have been aware of Ayaan Hirsi Ali for a couple of years. One courageous human being.

  3. ms. place says:

    Natch. Should have known. She is truly amazing, and so articulate.

  4. Stanley says:

    Hey Ollie, I just wanted to let you know that I wrote an email to Megan Stack at the LA Times congratulating her on her article and telling her about something that happened to me when I was working there and she replied with the following:

    “Thank you so much for reading the story and taking the time to respond. It is always a great pleasure to hear from a thoughtful reader, and especially on a story as personal as this one. In fact, I have a friend whose Jordanian, Christian brother did get two leg canings, once for wearing shorts to work out at the all-male gym, and once for not being inside the mosque at prayer time (His protests that he was Christian, of course, fell on deaf ears). Needless to say, he wound up back in Amman…”

    Thanks again,

    Megan

  5. Big Fella says:

    There is nothing like being there, on the ground, to really understand what life is like beyond the perimeter of the sheltered life here at home. I am sure you and Ms Stack have many interesting stories to compare. Let’s hope that Mr. Zell and his management team at the Tribune Company don’t gut the editorial staff any further. Whether the “bean counters” over there realize it or not, one of the reasons I continue to maintain my subscription is so that I can read first person accounts like Ms. Stack’s, and the other first person accounts of Times staff and stringers, all pseudonymous for the obvious reason that their lives are in danger simply because they represent the Times and its readers.

    They need to stop destroying the legacy that Otis Chandler left, which was a news institution on par with the New York Times, and learn how to adapt to our contemporary time, while not losing all of the good stuff.

  6. IMAN says:

    I’m so sorry to see how u ppl have only one way to live (your way) and if others didn’t live exactly like u..Then of course they are being repressed and suppressed and the person who said u can rape his virgin daughter as a punishment (ARE YOU KIDDING ME) u ppl believe anything((THAT IS SOO SAD)……Does it ever occur to you that topics like (arranged marriage is not only seen only in black and white) I’m sure what u had in mind in (the father telling his daughter: this is your husband …Go marry him and never let me see your face again) I’m I right?!!…sorry to disappoint you…But it’s nothing like that..Arranged marriage more or less r like DATING…U see some1 who u feel might be serious about u (and not lead you on forever then leave u once he finds some1 who’s prettier. or better in any way( then there r different ways u either meet and c if u get along or not ( for months )or maybe introduce him to your parents (it depends on the family)and when are officially engaged you can go out and get to know each other more. And if (u were not compatible) u can easily break the engagement…
    I hope I shed some light in to the case and maybe you could do some research and STOP believing everything u read and stop idealizing ayan..She makes me ashamed of being Somali..
    Ps::in some parts of the world…ppl follow their traditions and not Islam (PLZ KEEP THAT IN MIND..)
    Peace….

  7. Big Fella says:

    In the early history of the United States, it was customary for white people to own black slaves, despite the fact that it was a custom that went back much further in world history, no manner of justification made it any less despicable than it was.

    The seperation of females from society at large, which in essence relegates them to less opportunity and less rights than males, whether done for cultural or religious reasons is based upon archaic belief systems that developed many generations ago, in a very different world.

    Just as humankind has been able to advance its overall body of intellectual knowledge, has been able to improve its quality of life, been able to learn to eradicate disease and improve life expectancy, to adapt to a world that is becoming more populated and diverse, to adapt to the evolution of our living environment as the growth of humankind has impacted the Earth, it (humankind) must adapt or discard old customs, old culutral beliefs that deny any human being the same opportunities in life as any other human being.

  8. ms. place says:

    Ah, Iman, I believe you believe what you say. But I also believe Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who has put her life on the line to tell her story as she knows it. We know one cannot give a blanket blame to all Muslims, but atrocities happen. There is good and evil in all cultures.

    Here are some articles from reliable sources:

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/article616428.ece

    http://forums.brisinst.org.au/read.php?32,1416,1417

    http://www.smh.com.au/news/opinion/fighting-back-against-the-ultimate-weapon/2007/01/05/1167777276573.html

  9. IMAN says:

    I c what u mean, and I honestly don’t blame u when you see an isolated incident and then come to BLAME Islam for what they r doing,, I read some of your articles and I never said that our community is perfect or your community is perfect …I only said stop generalizing what u read to a whole community,, do u have a clue how unfair that is, in every community (emphasizing on the word EVERY,,,)) u see examples of violence towards women. Let’s take USA for example…the battered women shelters are every where, so when ayann((she made me hate my own sister’s name)comes out with a video of a battered women with verses of Quran written all over her body ,I’m I suppose to applauded her courage and efforts to give the worst idea to the world about MY religion. MY life, that infuriates me ,,,,I don’t even know any1 who beats his wife ((big shock..ha!!))I’m asking you again to open your mind and realize that some ppl (like me ..CHOOSE how they live and are more than happy with their life…??!!!!!!!
    peace

  10. Stanley says:

    How many “battered women’s” shelters do they have in the entirety of Saudi Arabia do you suppose?

  11. Pingback: BFD Blog! » Blog Archive » The Veil of Islam: Saudis Take A Step Backwards

  12. Pingback: BFD Blog! » Blog Archive » The Veil of Islam: Saudis Take A Step Backwards

  13. Pingback: The Veil of Islam: Saudis Take A Step Backwards :: The Sirens Chronicles

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