Mom – Day 23
I have been a bit sick and in bed for a few days. Dal has taken over while I was out. While I was sick I had the opportunity to turn on the TV for a few minutes to watch ‘The National Press Club’ luncheon with the guest speaker being Ayaan Hirsi Ali. I have spoken about her before. She was born in Somali in 1969, then her family moved to Saudi Arabia, she received political asylum in the Netherlands and I believe she is now living in the U.S. She described being a Muslim in Somalia and Kenya (where she also lived) and how families followed their beliefs with respect to Islam but when she lived in Saudi Arabia, Islam’s Sharia law was not a choice but a mandate by the government. She is now a Muslim Women’s Rights Activist. Although, I listened to maybe the last 15 minutes of this luncheon, there was another statement she made that struck a chord, she stated that Sharia law is ‘Gender Apartheid’ – wow - The audience also asked her what she thought about the firing of Juan Williams from NPR because of his comments with respect to Muslims. She said that in Europe it has been quite successful to find ways for people not to critique or question Islam (she gave examples of physical threats to their lives, trying to make it a criminal act, and/or by discrediting or humiliating the person or entity). She said that a government entity should never put a halt to public discourse.
I never considered myself a feminist or someone that would take a course in Women Studies. I always pictured ‘those’ women to be those who want to just be heard or ‘those’ women who couldn’t think of something better to do or study or who wanted to be more like a man. I never pictured myself writing this blog today. I love being a woman, I love wearing my red lipstick and high heels when I want to – but that is just it, when I WANT TO. My friend Carol gave me this wonderful CD called ‘Mujeres de Agua’ by Javier Limon. It is a compilation of music from different women artists from different parts of the world and they are singing for the women in Iran who cannot make their voice public. I love the CD, maybe I am becoming one of ‘those’ women?
I love you Zach